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Preponderance of the Evidence vs. Beyond a Reasonable Doubt

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Preponderance of the Evidence vs. Beyond a Reasonable Doubt

Post by Stan Dane on Wed 31 May 2017, 6:31 am

An observation.
 
In the US legal system, there are two standards of proof that must be met before the judge or jury decides who wins a case. Civil courts use a lower standard of "preponderance of evidence," while criminal courts use a higher standard of "beyond a reasonable doubt."
 
I saw the term "preponderance of the evidence" used in the Warren Commission Report in at least one of the conclusions. Since the Warren Commission was, for all intents and purposes, acting as judge and jury regarding Lee Oswald, it made me wonder if the Commission was using looser, civil standards to "convict" Oswald of criminal charges, avoiding the more stringent "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard. If so, I am not surprised the filthy bastards would try to browbeat the general public this way.

Just wondering. Maybe beowulf can answer this.
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Re: Preponderance of the Evidence vs. Beyond a Reasonable Doubt

Post by greg parker on Wed 31 May 2017, 9:24 am

Stan, this is what wiki says about them fwiw,

In the United States, a Presidential Commission is a special task force ordained by the President to complete a specific, special investigation or research. They are often quasi-judicial in nature; that is, they include public or in-camera hearings.


Presidential Commissions often serve one of two political purposes: to draw attention to a problem (the publication of a report by a commission can generally be counted on to draw attention from the media, depending on how its release is handled); or, on the other hand, to delay action on an issue (if the President wants to avoid taking action but still look concerned about an issue, he can convene a commission and then let it slip into obscurity)[citation needed]. However, there have been cases (the Tower, Rogers and Warren Commissions) where the commission has created reports that have been used as evidence in later criminal proceedings[citation needed].
----------------------------
If you then look at the list of commissions held thus far, most have nothing to do with legal matters. They deal with administrative matters.

I'm guessing (and beowulf may well correct me) that a president has virtually no boundaries on how a commission operates. In this case, it comes back also to a dead man having no legal rights or protections.

This quote from wiki does seem to fit here as to the reason for it:

to delay action on an issue (if the President wants to avoid taking action but still look concerned about an issue, he can convene a commission and then let it slip into obscurity

We know Johnson was determined to put a stop to any other form of inquiry, regardless of where or or who was running it. We also know that Dulles was of the opinion that no one would ever read the final report (which fits with a belief that it would all slip into obscurity once wound up).

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