Sunday, January 04, 2015

Quite the Quandry . . .

US Representative, Michael Grimm has reportedly made a plea deal to charges of tax evasion and hiring illegal workers.  


Although the sentencing has not yet taken place, according to SI Live  "Michael Grimm faces up to three years in prison."  
SI Live also states, while his future is in question:  "But a few things are clear: He will be disbarred due to the felony, as a guilty plea is equal to a conviction, and he is not eligible for a pension from Congress."

What I find strange is the fact that although he is resigning his seat in Congress, there is no law stating he must do so.   Each state makes laws as to who can run for elected office, but there is no federal law prohibiting felons from serving in Congress.  Interestingly there are federal laws determining which citizens can enjoy their Bill of Rights before and after a felony conviction.  

In many cities, a permit is now required to legally assemble, and there is a "protest box" for those who choose to exercise their right of free speech, if they so choose to publicly and peacefully stand in disagreement.   One does not even have to be a felon to have lost their 4th amendment right regarding illegal search and seizure . . .  

According to my research, gun ownership is off the table for anyone convicted of a felony punishable by at least one year in prison.  States can choose to restore civil rights, but according to federal law, a person who has committed a felony cannot own a gun without full restoration of rights and the conviction expunged. 

In many states felons can't vote, and federal law prohibits gun ownership, but they can serve in Congress.  One can also admit the commission of a felony, and be elected to the Highest Office in the land, according to "Dreams From My Father."   

It would seem as long as an individual isn't caught and charges are not pressed, the lack of integrity to respect the law is irrelevant.  

While there's nothing in the Constitution or House Rules barring felons from serving in Congress, the situation created an unwanted headache and negative attention for Boehner as he seeks to head into the new Congress starting with a clean slate.  

Included in the link below is a map.
http://blogs.kqed.org/lowdown/2014/02/26/felon-voting

When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.  a Proverb of Holy Scripture
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