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Are American Presidents Above the Law?
March 6, 2019 • 7:30 pm PST
Moderated by Madeleine Brand, Host, KCRW’s “Press Play”
The Mueller report promises to clarify what happened in the 2016 election and its aftermath. But that document may only add to the confusion over a broader question: What does it take to fire an American president? In recent months, critics of Donald Trump have discussed removing the president by impeachment, indictment, and the 25th Amendment. But no president has ever been impeached and convicted by the Senate, and the Department of Justice may preclude a president from being indicted. If impeachment is impossible, what methods exist, legally, for removing a president? Why do we have special prosecutors if they can’t prosecute? Is the American president, for all practical purposes, above the law? UCLA constitutional law scholar Jon D. Michaels, Wake Forest political scientist and author of The Special Prosecutor in American Politics Katy Harriger, and Joel D. Aberbach, political scientist and former director of the UCLA Center for American Politics and Public Policy, visit Zócalo to examine the historical, customary, and legal precedents that protect our presidents.