To Impeach Or Not To Impeach, That Is The Question
I have argued on this blog almost from the very first post that we need to impeach George W. Bush. He has flagrantly violated our constitution, lied to Congress and the American people and has violated international law in the execution of his war of choice. The only impeachable offense he hasn’t been caught perpetrating is getting a blowjob in the oval office. The case for impeachment is not based in retribution for impeaching one of ours, it’s about being true to our constitution and proclaiming to the world that the rule of law matters, that we are a civil society and that no one, not even the president, is above the law. It is also critical to send a message to all future presidents that we have no tolerance for the subversion of our founding documents and principles, and extra-constitutional powers cannot be claimed by the Executive Branch without it meaning the end of your presidency.
When Nancy Pelosi came out before the election and stated firmly that the Democrats, if they took over Congress, would not seek impeachment of this president, I was extremely angry. How could she take impeachment off of the table? How could she decide, before ever seeing the evidence, that impeachment is not warranted? I understand that she made a calculated move to help her fellow Democrats win in tight races across the country, but I think she went farther than she needed to go.
All that said, I am not in a hurry to impeach this President. I think it was easy to shout from the rooftops that Bush needed to be impeached when there was no hope or possibility that it would actually happen. Now that it’s possible, we have more than just impeachment to consider.
If the Democrats are to retain control of Congress and set up a win for the Presidency in ’08, they have to have more than impeachment to offer. Now that the situation isn’t hopeless and there is a chance to really start solving our national problems, I want that effort to be in the forefront. I want Democrats to start passing legislation that will really help working Americans, that will start solving our healthcare crisis and that will help relieve some of the pressure that most Americans are feeling. The Democrats must show, clearly, that they are capable of solving problems and by making the President veto good legislation that has the support of the people, they will have the added bonus of exposing the GOP as being callous to the challenges faced by the American people. That is the perfect setup for the Democrats to take the White House in two years, and that is the only way that we will have even a small chance of repairing the damage the GOP has wrought over the last six years.
Please do not misunderstand me, I am still in favor of getting the impeachment ball rolling. I want John Conyers to start his investigation and I want the subpoenas to start rolling out. I want to watch the hearings on CSPAN, I want the truth to make it to the American people and I want the public pressure (and disgust and anger) to swell to the point that Nancy Pelosi’s promise becomes impossible to keep, but there are two tracks and both trains need to keep moving forward. The current GOP led Congress was unable and unwilling to get any real work done and showed that they were incapable of doing more than one thing at a time (amending our Constitution to protect the flag and marriage being most important of course). The new Democratic Congress must put them to shame and pursue an agenda that will make our lives better while simultaneously ferreting out the truth. Once the truth is exposed, the question of impeachment becomes, as the Vice President is fond of saying, a no-brainer.