Barberton public library hosts guest speaker regarding impeachment

Hannah Predojev

Herald Staff Writer 

A fresh perspective in today’s world accounts for a lot, as taking a neutral stance can ultimately initiate a healthy, respectful narrative among the community. 

For an hour and a half, Dr. David Cohen, Ph.D., a professor of political science at The University of Akron, teaches students about congress and the presidency. He has been teaching at the school since 2000. 

A few weeks prior, he was part of a panel conducted by the Akron Press Club on impeachment, with three other law professors. He provided his thoughts on the role of impeachment. 

“It is a historic time for our country; this is only the fourth time that we have seen serious impeachment proceedings going on,” Cohen said. “Donald Trump will likely one of only three presidents in American history ever impeached. So, I think it is history before our eyes…” 

During the discussion, he touched on multiple topics, including how one can become impeached. One can be removed from office for a variety of reasons, including bribery, profiting off of the presidency, treason and sex scandals. Additionally, he noted that the concept is rarely used in the judicial system. In fact, Cohen acknowledged that only 62 individuals have been removed from office since 1789. Additionally, he elaborated on its history and the process. 

Mikhala Warner, an Akron resident, is a senior and political science major in Cohen’s “American presidency” class. She discussed why she believes people should come together, regardless of political status.

“I think it is important because this is setting a precedent for how future [leaders] will think that they will be able to behave, so if they are just voting on party lines, then presidents are going to have the power to do what they want, regardless of what the Constitution says…” 

The free Dec. 10 event at the library drew a significantly large crowd, with almost every seat filled, with a mix of both young and old participants. Cohen ended the evening by answering questions. One community member asked how confident Cohen felt about whether or not votes would be recorded accurately. He mentioned that he had “pretty massive concerns,” as touch screens leave one susceptible to the art of hacking, with “no evidence of a paper trail.”

Regarding the 2020 election, Cohen believes there will be record turnout for both the Democratic and Republican party. 

The session draws a large crowd, filling almost every seat in the house.

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