You know you’re in a constitutional crisis when…

“Unlike pornography, a constitutional crisis is not always obvious when you see it” writes Quinta Jurecic for Although the disobedience in question turned out to be more the product of confusion than systematic overthrow of the rule of law, the term constitutional crisis was thrown around quite a bit.A recent Supreme Court filing challenging Matthew Whitaker’s replacement of Jeff Sessions at the Justice Department referred to Whitaker’s appointment as a “constitutional crisis.” There is no standard definition of what makes a constitutional crisis as a matter of law or history.Under the Trump administration, suggesting the arrival of such a crisis evokes a mood more than anything else—a sense of ineffable, fractured dread.The question of whether the nation is in the grip of such a crisis first surfaced within weeks of President Donald Trump’s inauguration, and it has never really gone away.

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