Can The President of the United States Go To Jail?

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What would happen if the President of the United States went to jail or prison? Can he or she actually? “America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great,” wrote French political scientist Alexis de Tocqueville in his 1835 book, “Democracy in America”. The USA, he believed, offered equality that was not seen in other nations. The founding fathers of the U.S. had created a form of ruling that was not able to be tyrannical, that was chosen by the people and served the people, and if it failed to do so it would be removed. This America was a long way from absolute monarchies and from authoritarian government presided over by powerful dictators. It was supposed to embody what Thomas Jefferson wrote in the U.S Declaration of Independence, that, “all men are created equal.” With that in mind, welcome to this episode of the Infographics Show, Can a U.S. President Go to Jail?

If all men are created equal, perhaps that means that all men should be treated as equals when it comes to matters of justice. That’s why there are laws, and no people in a democracy should be immune to punishment. We could argue that the scales of justice do seem to be tipped in favor of those that have more money, to avoid close scrutiny by law enforcement or to hire brilliant legal teams to perhaps undo wrongdoings. Notwithstanding the sometimes mindboggling chicanery a very wealthy person might employ to get them out of trouble, everyone in the USA should be answerable to the same laws. This must mean an American president can surely go to jail, or prison. Just so you know, jail and prison are sometimes interchangeable words, but in the USA, jail is usually the place you go to for a short stint before you have a court hearing or you’re just serving a very short sentence. Prison is the place you go to after you’ve been convicted of a crime.

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