You are herecontent / Statements on the Introduction of Congressman Dennis Kucinich's Articles of Impeachment Against President George W. Bush
Statements on the Introduction of Congressman Dennis Kucinich's Articles of Impeachment Against President George W. Bush
"More than two centuries ago, the Founders of this country set forth a procedure for Congress to follow in the event of grave abuse of power by the Chief Executive. That process is impeachment. In the face of the monumental deceit and disregard for the Constitution that we have witnessed on the part of the President over the past seven years, Congressman Kucinich's initiation of this process is neither fanciful nor futile, neither vengeful nor vindictive; it is the sober fulfillment of his sworn duty as a Congressman to follow the law without regard to personal consequence and misguided political stratagem. It is, quite simply, an act of patriotism."
Elizabeth de la Vega, Former Federal Prosecutor and Author of United States v. George W. Bush et. al.
"This thick collection of impeachable offenses could be expanded dramatically and should be viewed as a sampling of the crimes and abuses of President George W. Bush and his subordinates. Bush has had many accomplices -- first and foremost Vice President Cheney. But our Founders created a single executive precisely so that we could hold that one person accountable for the actions of the executive branch. It is high time we did so, and millions of Americans will be urging their representatives to support the effort being led by Congressman Kucinich.
"These articles establish, and hearings would establish further, that President Bush was decidedly in the loop and effectively 'the decider' behind countless abuses of power. And, of course, his public comments have time and again advertised his indifference to the laws he is violating. Not only does overwhelming evidence show us that Bush knew his claims about WMDs to be false, but the president has shown us that he considers the question of truth or falsehood to be laughably irrelevant. When Diane Sawyer asked Bush during a televised interview after the war was underway why he had claimed with such certainty that there were so many weapons in Iraq, he replied: "What's the difference? The possibility that [Saddam] could acquire weapons, If he were to acquire weapons, he would be the danger."
"What's the difference? Hundreds of thousands of corpses and a fatal blow to the rule of law among nations. That's the difference. Unless we remove impeachment from the Constitution by failing to exercise it, in which case truth will no longer matter any more than justice or peace."
David Swanson, creator of ImpeachCheney.org, Washington Director of Democrats.com and co-founder of the AfterDowningStreet.org coalition, a board member of Progressive Democrats of America, of the Backbone Campaign, and of Voters for Peace, serves on the legislative working group of United for Peace and Justice.
"Overload is the main problem—I call it outrage fatigue. The sheer multitude, not to mention magnitude, of impeachable offenses tends to dull the senses. The opportunity to dig into just one or two provided some space and focused the mind.
"At the same time, the deeper one digs, the more unimaginable the dirt that comes up. Earlier, I had not taken the time to sift through the abundant evidence of the unconscionable ways in which George Bush and George Tenet teamed up—including, in Tenet’s case, lying under oath—to stave off charges of misfeasance/malfeasance before the attacks on 9/11.
"Since January 2003, my colleagues and I in Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity have felt duty-bound to turn our analytic skills onto the issue of how our country could have launched what the post-WWII Nuremberg Tribunal called the 'supreme international crime' — a war of aggression. 'Supreme,' said Nuremberg, because unlike other war crimes, this one 'contains the accumulated evil of the whole.' (Think torture, for example.)
"Intelligence officers take very seriously our Oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Our country's Founders, keen observers of the ways of power and human nature, anticipated there would be a time when a president would attempt to act like a king, and so they wrote into the Constitution an orderly way to remove a president and/or other high officials for high crimes or misdemeanors—impeachment in the House, conviction in the Senate.
"The Founders pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to create a system in which we could protect ourselves from unbridled power. Today, we cannot let a 21st Century string of abuses and usurpations stand without challenge.
"But the experience of the past several years shows that there is a very high hurdle in our way: no Common Sense. I refer, of course, to the courageous independent journalism of the likes of Tom Paine who stirred the innate dignity of Americans toward sacrifice for independence and freedom. Tom Paine would be horrified to see what has become of his profession today—with browbeaten journalists and former general officers doing the bidding of the corporations that own/pay them.
"In my view, impeachment proceedings are essential to:
--Reestablish the separation of powers in our Constitution as a check on the so-called “unitary executive;”
--Prevent a budding—and catastrophic—U.S. attack on Iran by exposing it as yet another war of aggression against a country posing no threat to the U.S.;
--Call attention to the blood already drained from our civil liberties and stanch the bleeding.
"Impeachment proceedings may be the only way to force the captive media to inform normal citizens about what has been going on in our country. Thomas Jefferson underscored the importance of this when he said: 'Whenever the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their own government.'"
Ray McGovern; former Army officer and CIA analyst; co-founder, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity; writer/speaker with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington, D.C.
"All of these Articles of Impeachment together are only the tip of the iceberg of the High Crimes committed by the Bush-Cheney administration. Yet this administration remains in power and immune from prosecution. Congress must impeach Bush and Cheney now - before they issue themselves full pardons for all of their crimes."
Bob Fertik, President of Democrats.com, Cofounder of AfterDowningstreet.org.
"President Bush, Cheney and other U.S. officials have violated numerous domestic and international laws governing crime of aggression, war crime, torture, etc., and they should be not only impeached by the US Congress but also be prosecuted by a special prosecutor, to the full extent of the law before or after impeachment. That is the best way to uphold the US Constitution and the rule of law at home and abroad."
John Kim, Esq., Attorney; participated in the World Tribunal on Iraq; and author of The Crime of Aggression Against Iraq.
"Americans are looking forward to an early end to the Bush administration, but unless we as a people force the current Congress to live up to its Constitutional duty to defend the Constitution against seven years of unremitting assault by President Bush, Vice President Cheney and the gang of 'mob lawyers' who have abetted their crimes, the next administration, and the next Congress will inherit a government that would be unrecognizable to the Founders. The only way to re-establish the concept of a tri-partite government of checks and balances, of, by and for the people, a free nation dedicated to the proposition that all people are created equal, and a country that again has the respect of the rest of the world, is to impeach those who have been trying to destroy those things."
Dave Lindorff, veteran investigative reporter from Philadelphia, co-author (with Barbara Olshansky) of The Case for Impeachment, working on a book about the Bush administration's war crimes.
"Impeachment is necessary. It is not a matter of politics, of right versus left, Democrat versus Republican. Rather, it is a matter of law. The current administration has repeatedly violated the Constitution and civil law. If there is no accountability for these violations, then why have a Constitution? Why have laws? The Constitution cannot protect itself. Nor can the Rule of Law. It is up to 'We, the People,' to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. I therefore urge the House and the Senate to do their sworn duty and impeach President Bush and Vice President Cheney for high crimes and misdemeanors."
Stephen Heller, formerly known as the "Diebold Whistle-blower," is an election integrity activist and a member of Velvet Revolution's Election Protection Strike Force team.
"The breadth of impeachable offenses committed by the Bush/Cheney administration is likely unparalleled in our nation's history. Equally unparalleled, and in many cases even more alarming and outrageous, is the lack of accountability brought to the perpetrators of these High Crimes and Misdemeanors. It is the Constitutional duty of members of Congress -- members from any political party -- to bring such accountability, particularly when the list of crimes began with the very acts that brought this administration into office during their elections, and right up through today when the same sort of crimes continue, and are in place to try and affect our next Presidential Election.
"This is not about politics, it's about the Constitutional duty of Congress. If a line in the sand is not drawn immediately and clearly in the face of such corruption and disdain for our American values, such as the Rule of Law, the historical bar for criminality in our Executive Branch will have been forever lowered, no matter who happens to serve in the White House in the future."
Brad Friedman, investigative journalist, creator/ editor of The Brad Blog, an expert in election integrity issues, and co-founder of the non-partisan watchdog organization VelvetRevolution.us.
"Our country was built upon the Constitution. It's the foundation of who we are as a free people. If Congress continues to disregard its relevance as a living document, and the Bush White House continues to shred it before they leave office, then we have lost everything precious that the Founders sacrificed and fought for. They fought for our future. They understood that there could be no peace without justice. They knew how fragile their republic would be without the Constitution as its anchor. Yet even with their farsighted wisdom, they couldn't have foreseen the numerous crimes that George W. Bush committed in just seven and a half years of his being in office.
"If we take our place in history seriously, if we want to heal our country and honor what the Constitution has given us, then the only prescribed remedy is impeachment of Bush and Cheney. In that way we will restore our nation to its rightful place in the world."
Sophie de Vries, National Impeachment Coordinator for Democrats.com and project manager for the articles of impeachment.
"I fully support Rep. Kucinich's efforts to uphold the Constitutional basis of our Democratic Republic. Absent accountability, the rule of law, and the other underpinnings of our system, we'll devolve into tyranny. We're seeking to halt and reverse the dangerous trends outlined in the articles of impeachment. Hopefully it's not too late."
Mike Hersh, Progressive Democrats of America National Staff and Executive Director of HealthCareMaryland.org
"In Ohio's 2004 election, we witnessed unprecedented partisan purging of voters from the rolls, suppression of minorities at the polls, and voting machine irregularities -- all favoring Bush. These new high-tech Jim Crow tactics embraced by Bush and his campaign are impeachable offenses."
Robert Fitrakis, Ph.D., J.D., professor of political science, award-winning investigative journalist, editor of the Columbus Free Press and www.freepress.org, and an election rights attorney.
"In the past four years, my academic research has touched on many troubling areas of what appears to be a shining democracy in its waning years. I have investigated issues regarding federal surveillance on civilians, arrogation of unrestrained executive power, use of the military as a posse comitatus, the withholding of public information, and the aggressive dismantling of the system of checks and balances that holds our fragile system together.
"My research has taken me through a clandestine labyrinth of maneuvers led by an executive branch that will go down famously in history for its numerous crimes, not the least of which is its attempt to dismantle our democracy. Without impeachment hearings, the full spectrum of the crimes of the Bush administration may never be known, and many of the incursions it has made on our democratic society will be hidden in the legal and bureaucratic structures they have developed. Without holding this administration accountable, many of the victims of this administration will forever be forgotten to history. For the sake of all those who have been its victims, for the sake of the maintenance of our democracy, we must impeach this administration."
Barbara Bowley, Associate Professor of Social Sciences and Information Literacy at Woodbury University in Burbank, California. She is author of "The Campaign for Unfettered Power: Executive Supremacy, Secrecy and Surveillance" in Impeach the President: the Case Against Bush and Cheney, edited by Dennis Loo and Peter Phillips.
"Using impeachment to get Bush out of office is not what is most important since he is going out anyway. I want to see him impeached even if it happens on his last day in office because we need to set a precedent that this abuse of power will never be considered acceptable."
Richard Mathews, alternate member of the Los Angeles County Democratic Central Committee.
"Hundreds of innocent civilians die daily because of the US occupation of Iraq. Over a million have died since the US invasion and more will die if the Bush administration ignites a war with Iran. We cannot wait until January 2008 for a new president to decide to phase down the war. Impeachment is the only way to stop the on-going slaughter and end the war immediately. After Impeachment we must move to indict the US war criminals who lied us into this terrible period."
Peter Phillips, Professor of Sociology at Sonoma State University and Director of Project Censored, editor of 14 books including Impeach the President: the Case Against Bush and Cheney, with Dennis Loo.
"The situation today is more serious than the conditions that provoked the American Revolution. If we stand by now and allow this government to openly torture, abrogate habeas corpus, carry out unjust, illegal and immoral wars, and spy on all Americans, may we be damned by history."
Dr. Loo, co-editor/author of Impeach the President: the Case Against Bush and Cheney, Associate Professor of Sociology at Cal Poly Pomona, serves on the National Steering Committee of the World Can’t Wait.
"Impeachment is the most important item on the national agenda. This moment in history determines whether our nation will be governed by the rule of law or not. The people of Washington State are honored to be counted among those who stand now to defend the laws and principles established in our constitution."
Director, Washington For Impeachment
"For the last year and a half, I have somehow managed to balance work and a full time college course load with impeachment advocacy because I believe that this administration’s subversion of the Constitution is the single most important issue facing this country. The founders of the Republic and architects of its democratic tripartite form of government clearly intended impeachment to serve as the legal means to address executive aggrandizement and violation of the rule of law. I have been dismayed at Congress’ unwillingness to fulfill its oath of office to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic”. It has been particularly upsetting when my Congressional representative, who is the Chairman of the House of Representatives Judiciary Sub-committee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, has intransigently refused to support the call for impeachment hearings even while acknowledging that the Bush administration has committed “high crimes and misdemeanors” as specified in the Constitution. However, taking to heart former Congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman’s words that impeachment must come from the grassroots, I have steadfastly continued to lobby Congress to undertake impeachment hearings.
"I am deeply grateful to Congressman Kucinich for his admirable work to preserve and protect the Constitution and am honored to contribute to this effort. It is essential to the future of our country as a democracy that we hold a rogue executive in check and restore the balance of power. Only by putting this administration on notice through impeachment hearings will we reclaim our civil rights, restore the rule of law, extricate ourselves from the illegal occupation of Iraq, stop the killing, wounding and displacement of countless American and Iraqi lives, and prevent an illegitimate and unprovoked attack on Iran. Quite simply, without impeachment there is no democracy.
"Thank you, Congressman Kucinich, you are a true American hero."
Sharon Lynch, NY CD-08 Progressive Democrats of America Chapter Chair
"I believe impeachment of Bush/Cheney is not only the right thing to do for our national well-being, but it must be done if we truly are a nation of laws. The Bush regime has shattered any moral authority America may have had, and we should never again claim superiority to any other nation. I am ashamed of our country's brutality and of its global arrogance and ignorance. I'm ashamed that our elected representatives have not yet impeached this administration. It is unthinkable to have a president who calls the Constitution, the same one he sends our young men and women to kill and die for, 'just a goddamned piece of paper.' When our veterans' pleas to impeach their commander in chief continue to be disregarded, how can we possibly claim we support our troops?
"If this administration is allowed to leave office without answering for its illegal and immoral activities, America will forever forfeit its standing in the world, and citizens will never again be able to take pride in their country."
Tobi Dragert, Director
Los Angeles Area Impeachment Center
"In light of the illegal war in Iraq, the systematic torture of prisoners in US custody, the illegal surveillance of Americans, and George W. Bush's refusal to carry out his constitutional duty to faithfully execute the laws, impeachment proceedings should be initiated immediately and a criminal investigation launched against the President of the United States."
Marjorie Cohn, President, National Lawyers Guild
"Good government requires constant maintenance. We must notice problems when they occur and to try to fix them. That is how we can best express our love for our country. We are at a critical time as a nation. The system of government brilliantly conceived by our Founding Fathers is crumbling. The Executive Branch is expanding its powers far beyond its Constitutional role and at the expense of Congress and the American people. Other nations, who once admired America, now watch with horror as we start preemptive wars and torture prisoners who are held without charge.
"According to the Constitution, the House of Representatives has the sole power to impeach. The House must, therefore, fully investigate the various charges, well known to the public, and then fulfill their oath to protect the Constitution by impeaching President Bush and Vice President Cheney. It is critical that this be done before Bush and Cheney leave office. Otherwise future Presidents will inherit these awful powers and the bar will have been set so high that it will be nearly impossible to impeach them."
Phil Burk, http://www.impeachbush.tv
"because we love America"