March 11, 2015 at 12:51 pm #7973VitalogyParticipant
Some law professors and liberal commentators say they believe the “open letter” Sen. Tom Cotton and 46 of his Republican colleagues sent this week to the leaders of Iran, warning them that any nuclear deal they sign with President Obama won’t last after Obama leaves office, might be a crime.
That letter from the Arkansas Republican to the ayatollahs and other Iranian officials, critics say, is a violation of the 1799 Logan Act, which says starkly:
“Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.”
“This [letter] seems squarely to satisfy the elements of the law,” Temple University law professor Peter Spiro declared, suggesting a crime has occurred here.
Just imagine the uproar if 47 Dem Senators wrote a letter to Saddam!March 11, 2015 at 1:01 pm #7974
They have totally lost their shit.
No ability to govern reasonably remains.March 11, 2015 at 1:15 pm #7975
Another realization is this kind of thing is the end game in the bubble.
Like they thought Romney was winning by a landslide, they really do believe Obama is incompetent, among other things, and all issues are polarized, making data driven, fact based dialog impossible.
Full bat shit people.
I’m not sure we have any meaningfull basis to be reasonable left.
At some point the Republicans are either going to clean it up to a point where divided government is plausible, or it will make more sense to vote them out of power.
We really need an effective opposition party, not just opposition.March 11, 2015 at 1:26 pm #7977jerry1949Spectator
Oh no! What are we going to do when 47 senators go to prison for breaking an ancient law that has not been enforced for more than a century?March 11, 2015 at 1:39 pm #7979
For a bunch of guys that claim to carry around copies of the Constitution, they seem to be quite ignorant of what is actually printed therein. We can only hope beyond hope that they’re all removed from office, so that they can be replaced by people with functioing brains.March 11, 2015 at 2:01 pm #7980
That will be the more likely remedy.
It is very telling to see that response too.
Ever since we decided it didn’t make sense to actually enforce penalties for this kind of garbage, there has been an increasing amount of it.
So it’s going to be votes, not jail.
Probably should be jail though, or at the least 40 special elections.
Yes F&B, you are righr. We have one party who is demonstrating psychopathic behavior and we all need to make our votes count accordingly.March 11, 2015 at 2:46 pm #7981edselehrParticipant
“Oh no! What are we going to do when 47 senators go to prison for breaking an ancient law that has not been enforced for more than a century?”
Unlike the Bible, the Constitution and the laws of this land cannot be ignored because it’s been a long time since the law has been invoked.March 11, 2015 at 2:59 pm #7982Deane JohnsonParticipant
Vitalogy, your headline and the first paragraph are inconsistent. In the headline, you say they broke the law. In the story it says they might have.
“Some law professors and liberal commentators say they believe the “open letter” Sen. Tom Cotton and 46 of his Republican colleagues sent this week to the leaders of Iran, warning them that any nuclear deal they sign with President Obama won’t last after Obama leaves office, might be a crime.”
Other law professors I’ve seen on cable say it wasn’t illegal. Liberal CNN for one.
Vitalogy, you’re a classic example of a person who sees what they want to see and hears what they want to hear.March 11, 2015 at 3:08 pm #7984Andy BrownParticipant
Legal issue aside, other non signing Republican Senators admit their colleagues were “not helpful,” “inappropriate” and “unconvincing.”March 11, 2015 at 3:57 pm #7986LangstonParticipant
Not surprised that some GOP senators would do this, but am surprised that so many did. Thought types such as McCain, Hatch and Grassley knew better. It was not only Cotton that stuck his neck out.March 11, 2015 at 8:24 pm #8001VitalogyParticipant
Yes Deane, I say they broke the law. So do many others.
I don’t expect jail, but I do expect a spanking for being such idiots. And anti-American!
At a minimum, it’s shitty politics. I’d even say somewhat treasonous if you ask me.
Mark my words, the signatures on that will come back to haunt.March 12, 2015 at 7:13 am #8009
For those who claim that the Logan Act is archaic, we can also point to a more recent SCOTUS ruling:
“Aside from Article II of the Constitution, even if these 47 Senators get away with the seeming violation of the Logan Act, there is this to consider:
United States v Curtiss-Wright Export Corp. (1936) –
“The President alone has the power to speak or listen as a representative of the nation. He makes treaties with the advice and consent of the Senate; but he alone negotiates. Into the field of negotiation the Senate cannot intrude, and Congress itself is powerless to invade it.”
This is a Supreme Court ruling. These 47 Senators have violated the law. Additionally, given the malicious intent and egregious nature of this act and damage to the reputation of the United States in the international community, it is at least Malfeasance in Office and Official Misconduct and they should be investigated on these grounds, and appropriately charged and punished.”March 12, 2015 at 7:30 am #8010Listener_PeteParticipant
The Logan Act doesn’t apply to US Senators. What they did was stupid, but it wasn’t illegal. I learned this from Thom Hartmann.March 12, 2015 at 7:33 am #8011
On what does Justice Hartmann base that opinion? Is he aware of this case?March 12, 2015 at 7:40 am #8012Listener_PeteParticipant
I think he read the legislation, plus there have been Democratic Senators who have litteraly done the same thing. Ted Kennedy.
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