The Impeachment of President Clinton Essay

698 Words3 Pages
James Madison, in writing the US Constitution in 1787, intended that the system of checks and balances would separate the powers of the government branches and counter a “tyranny of the majority”. He carefully sought to distribute powers in a way that prevents any one faction from dominating. Under this system, the President can appoint federal judges, grant pardons, veto bills, propose laws, reject part of bills, etc. Equally, the Congress can override presidential veto, impeach the President, ratify treaties, etc., and the Courts can declare laws and executive orders unconstitutional. The contemporary system of checks and balances isn’t working as Madison intended as illustrated by the impeachment of President Clinton, the government…show more content…
James Madison, in writing the US Constitution in 1787, intended that the system of checks and balances would separate the powers of the government branches and counter a “tyranny of the majority”. He carefully sought to distribute powers in a way that prevents any one faction from dominating. Under this system, the President can appoint federal judges, grant pardons, veto bills, propose laws, reject part of bills, etc. Equally, the Congress can override presidential veto, impeach the President, ratify treaties, etc., and the Courts can declare laws and executive orders unconstitutional. The contemporary system of checks and balances isn’t working as Madison intended as illustrated by the impeachment of President Clinton, the government shutdown in 1995, and the Iran-Contra. The Clinton-era of politics presented the danger of presidentialism to the system of checks and balances. The possession of authority and executive power is used by presidents to advance their agendas. When their power is challenged, a President may assert authority without a constitutional basis. This sets precedent for the next President to resist contraction and creates a vicious cycle. An undemocratic attack on checks and balances is seen in the impeachment and trial of President Clinton. The House vote for impeachment was grounded on the charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. President Clinton was wrongfully impeached by the House of Representatives and was properly acquitted by the
Open Document