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Tutor profile: Matthew S.

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Matthew S.
Senior Analyst with a Master's in Political Science
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Questions

Subject: SAT

TutorMe
Question:

What subject areas have you excelled at within the SAT and which are you qualified to teach?

Inactive
Matthew S.
Answer:

I have experience both taking and teaching the SAT, with excellent skills in all areas of the test. I am happy to work with students in the areas of critical reading, writing, and math (with and without a calculator).

Subject: German

TutorMe
Question:

Was hast du über die Thanksgiving-Ferientage gemacht?

Inactive
Matthew S.
Answer:

Ich habe die Ferientage mit meiner Familie verbracht. Wir haben ziemlich gut gegessen und viel zusammen gelacht. In meiner Familie spielen wir am Abend Kartenspiele und Brettspiele. Mein Lieblingsspiel ist Skat, aber das Lieblingsspiel meines älteren Bruders ist Schach. Er spielt Schach seitdem er 8 war und hat ein paar Wettkämpfe gewonnen. Meine Eltern spielen nicht so gerne, aber über den Feiertagen spielen sie doch mit uns. Mein Vater liest lieber ein dickes Buch -- im Moment liest er Also Sprach Zarathustra, von Nietzsche. Am Thanksgiving Tag wachen meine Eltern sehr früh auf und kochen den ganzen Tag lang. Am Abend essen wir alle zusammen. Dieses Jahr haben sie Truthahn, Mais, Kartoffeln, und Erbsen gekocht. Zum Nachttisch gab es Schokoladenkuchen -- das ist mein Lieblingsnachtisch. Ich mag Thanksgiving und die Tagen danach, weil ich viel Zeit mit meiner Familie verbringe und nicht in die Schule gehen muss. The above paragraph is written from the perspective of a high school student and uses grammar and vocabulary with which an intermediate student would likely be familiar. I possess C2 level German fluency, the highest level of fluency attainable in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

Subject: US Government and Politics

TutorMe
Question:

To what extent is the US impeachment process, as spelled out in the Constitution and invoked numerous times throughout US history, a legal versus political process?

Inactive
Matthew S.
Answer:

In the US system, impeachment refers to the bringing of formal charges against a government official, analogous to an indictment by a grand jury. It is not, by itself, sufficient to remove an official from his or her post. The US House of Representatives brings the charges and then votes by a simple majority whether to impeach. If the impeachment is approved, the proceedings move to the US Senate for a trial of the accused. Though impeachment has been deployed by the House more than 60 times in US history, only two presidents (Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton) have been impeachment, and neither was then removed from office. (Though the House is currently conducting an impeachment inquiry, Donald Trump has not been formally impeached.) In the strictest sense, impeachment is a legal proceeding. The Constitution lays out the framework for impeachment, delegating the power to impeach to the House (which requires a simple majority) and the power to convict and remove an official from office to the Senate (by a two-thirds supermajority). However, the Constitution leaves the list of impeachable offenses intentionally vague, limiting it to "Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors". While bribery is relatively well-defined, treason is somewhat subjective, and "high Crimes and Misdemeanors" is more nebulous still. Whether an offense is impeachable depends largely on the composition of the US House. In both Presidential impeachments, a majority of the House held significant political animus to the Commander in Chief. For Johnson, he faced a Congress of the opposite party that was angered by his lenient and milquetoast policies toward Southern Reconstruction. Similarly, Clinton faced a hostile House of Representatives that was spoiling for a fight. Had either president had a House of Representatives controlled by his own party, impeachment would have been much less likely, giving weight to the argument that impeachment is more political than legal. Finally, the current impeachment hearings against Trump were initiated by a Democratically-controlled House; if the House had remained in Republican hands, the chance of an impeachment inquiry into their own President would have been negligible. While impeachment is a legal process -- with rules, votes, and immutable consequences upon conviction -- it is in essence more political than legal. The decision to start impeachment proceedings, as well as what constitutes an impeachable offense, is a political one.

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