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Archive of entries posted on December 2010

Is the Senate a Continuing Body?

The main page of the U.S. Senate website today explains to visitors “What Happens When a New Congress Begins?”  Presumably, this informative blurb, probably written by the Senate historian, is not intended to delve into controversial and bitterly divisive topics.  Yet the author asserts that “the Senate is a continuing body” which “does not have [...]


Article I provides that “Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States.”  It has long been held by the Senate that disqualification is not an automatic consequence of conviction and removal, but [...]

Judge Porteous and Impeachment for Conduct Prior to Federal Appointment

On December 8, the Senate voted to convict and remove from office U.S. District Judge Thomas Porteous, who became only the eighth official (all of whom have been federal judges) in history to be impeached and convicted.  Porteous’s offenses stemmed from a corrupt relationship he developed while serving as a state judge before his appointment [...]