Leftist Harvard Law School professor Laurence Tribe took to twitter say Fox News, Tucker Carlson, and Trump voters are guilty of “treason,” but after a severe backlash, he deleted the tweets.
“Led by Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson, the GOP’s Trump wing appears to be throwing its weight behind [Russian President Vladimir] Putin. If Putin opts to wage war on our ally, Ukraine, such ‘aide and comfort’ to an ‘enemy’ would appear to become ‘treason’ as defined by Article III of the U.S. Constitution,” Tribe tweeted Monday on morning.
But as soon as the backlash began, Tribe backed up and suddenly tried to claim that he didn’t mean treason in the legal manner and tried to say treason should not be charged even if Trump is guilty of working for the Russians because we were not at war with Russia at the time.
“I’m persuaded by those who thought I meant to be using the word ‘treason’ literally — despite my use of the phrase ‘would appear to be’ — that I should’ve been more careful: Because we’re not at war with Russia, treason prosecutions should be off the table,” Tribe belatedly explained. “Sorry if I mislead you.”
Then he deleted the whole thing.
Laurence Tribe has now deleted his original tweet as well as his follow-up. pic.twitter.com/hPPZ5cJ49s
— Jerry Dunleavy (@JerryDunleavy) February 21, 2022
Regardless of what he claims he “meant,” a law professor should have known better than to accuse voters, Trump, and Fox News of “treason.”
Treason is not a general term. It has specific meaning under the law.
Here is how the U.S. Constitution defines it:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.
The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.
Also, not the “two witnesses” provision? YEs, that is there to prevent malicious charges of treason because the actual turning against the U.S. has to be witnessed in real time by others who will swear to what they saw and heard.
This makes the charge very hard to prove.
But the founders did that for a reason. While they did want to punish real treason, they also wanted to protect Americans from trumped up, malicious, purely political witch hunt charges.
Tribe should have known better as a so-called law professor.
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