Thursday, April 18, 2019

Impeach? Or invalidate?

The Mueller report apparently concluded that there was substantial interference, but could not prove that Trump colluded with the Russians. Why is collusions dispositive? Wasn't the election nevertheless invalid, independent of collusion?  

People are assuming that SCOTUS wouldn't invalidate it, because there is no constitutional provision for such an action —  but courts in other countries have invalidated elections where there was sufficient tampering. I wonder if they were following constitutional mechanisms, or just flying by the seat of their pants.

The constitution has been interpreted to incorporate the English Common law, wherever that law was not abrogated by specific constitutional or statutory provisions.  The Common Law is a system of cases dating back for hundreds, maybe even over a thousand years.  Many aspects of our law, such as the “reasonable man” standard for negligence arose out of the English Common Law.

The English Common Law, historically, had two parts.  One part was called “law” and one part was called “equity.”  “Equity” included injunctions and laches.  The idea of “equity” was that where the result of law was too harsh, or non-sensical, a judge could, in limited cases, substitute his own judgment for the law.

Certainly, contracts are always voidable for fraud in the inducement, even if there is no provision in the contract for voiding them.  It seems to me that, by analogy, a statutory election could be invalidated given sufficient tampering or fraud.

Perhaps we ought to be considering a constitutional amendment regarding when tampering would give rise to invalidating an election, but maybe it isn’t necessary.  

It disturbs me that no one is considering this possibility.  No collusion, in everyone’s minds, means Trump until 2020, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

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