Media coverage of possible presidential impeachment dominates the news today as few issues in recent memory. Yet, the constitutional framework which controls impeachment, (scattered throughout Articles I, II, and III), is little understood by even normally informed Americans.

An ancient practice derived from English common law, impeachment was incorporated into our 1787 Constitution with minimum specificity and maximum ambiguity about what constitutes an impeachable offense or how the impeachment process was to play out.

Madonna is professor of public affairs at Franklin and Marshall College and Young is a speaker, pollster, author and former professor of politics and public affairs at Penn State University. They encourage responses at terry.madonna@fandm.edu and drmikelyoung@comcast.net.

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