Thursday, January 7, 2010

On this day: Impeach!

In 1999 the US House started impeachment hearings against President Clinton, for only the third time in history. Not surprisingly, impeach has only leapt up during presidential impeachments in the US (as opposed to judicial impeachments, or foreign impeachments), but it is interesting how quickly it has fallen. After Nixon resigned (and ended the long national nightmare), impeachment fell off the map, to pre-Nixonian levels, if not lower. After the Clinton impeachment failed, impeachment disappeared—it was not made an issue in the next election and only crept up after calls to impeach the next president.

And that other impeachment? Well, the little peak in the late 1860s was the impeachment of Andrew Johnson, which also fell rather precipitously, even as he survived by just one vote.

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