Remove from office Vs revoke legitimacy

< Previous | Next >
Hello everyone,


What I am going to ask is something that everyone's talking about in Brazil, as the president - Dilma Rousseff - is at risk of being 'removed from office'. I've been doing a lot of searching online (dictionaries, Google, etc) and found two options: 'remove from office' and 'revoke legitimacy'. I personally prefer the first one, as it definitely has more to do with 'prosecuting someone (president, mayor, etc) and forcing them to leave (office) because of something wrong they did (crime).' My question: which option is natural/correct in the example I made below?

a. Dilma Rousseff is at risk of being removed from office. Vs b. Dilma Rousseff is at risk of having her legitimacy revoked.


Thank you in advance!
 
  • sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The first one is concrete (although without further context I can't tell whether an election or some other procedure is involved); the second one is more abstract. The first one leaves me in no doubt about the possible outcome; the second one is vague. I much prefer the first.
     
    Thank you, Sound Shift. I've been studying English for more than 20 years and I've always seen 'remove from office'. I remembering reading a book with technical terms and they recommended 'remove from office'. I needed to talk to a native speaker to confirm it, as English is a complex language.

    More:

    • The accusations must be investigated in Congress, and then impeachment must be approved by two-thirds of the lower house and, after a trial, by the Senate, before Rousseff can be removed from office. [Los Angeles Times - USA - 2015]
     

    e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    I would say that removing someone from office is the first phrase that springs to mind.
    To talk about revocation of legitimacy seems rather formal and much less straightforward. It is also much more of a legal term in my view.
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    I find the concept of "revoking legitimacy" strange and nonsensical, and I would never use it. You can revoke a title or an award, but not legitimacy.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    I find the concept of "revoking legitimacy" strange and nonsensical, and I would never use it. You can revoke a title or an award, but not legitimacy.
    :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
    As an aside, however, I'm guessing you might be thinking of your Eduardo Cunha, speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, who apparently refuses to resign, despite condemnation by his colleagues for alleged corruption.

    In such a case, we might say that a person has "lost his legitimacy" but continues in office.
     
    As an aside, however, I'm guessing you might be thinking of your Eduardo Cunha, speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, who apparently refuses to resign, despite condemnation by his colleagues for alleged corruption.

    In such a case, we might say that a person has "lost his legitimacy" but continues in office.
    Thank you very much, Sdgraham. This is one of the best answers I've ever seen here. It really helped clarify the use of "legitimacy".
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top