You are herecontent / Sheehan Versus Pelosi?

Sheehan Versus Pelosi?


By John Nichols, www.thenation.com

The Bush administration is no barrier to the burgeoning movement for impeachment. In fact, George Bush and Dick Cheney should probably be made honorary members of the various coalitions seeking to remove them from office. Not a day goes by when the president and vice president do not take actions that strengthen the case for impeachment — actions that, on Cheney’s part, have already inspired ten U.S. House members to endorse articles detailing his high crimes and misdemeanors.

Many more House Democrats would sign on for impeachment if the leadership of their caucus was not pressuring them to back off.

Thus, the greatest barrier to the movement to hold the president and vice president to account is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California.

Before last year’s election, Pelosi announced that impeachment was “off the table.” It is probably good that she did not try to nullify another section of the Constitution — say, the part about freedom of speech. But Pelosi did serious damage to the system of checks and balances when she declared that her House would not use the tool created by the founders to assure that the legislative branch could keep errant executives in line.

No one really expected Pelosi to lead the charge for impeachment.

As the office holder who follows Cheney in the line of succession to the presidency, the Speaker ought not be the primary proponent of the removal of those ahead of her in the Oval Office queue.

But the solemn oath she swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States should have precluded her from cherry picking the sections to which she chose to “bear true faith and allegiance.”

More importantly, it should have precluded the Speaker from muscling members of her caucus to eschew talk of impeachment.

Unfortunately, Pelosi has misread her moment in history.

Even more unfortunately, she refuses to acknowledge her error.

Enter Cindy Sheehan, the “Peace Mom” who two summers ago gained the attention and sympathy of the world when she demanded that Bush explain why he sent her son to die in an unwise and unnecessary war.

Sheehan, whose advocacy for impeachment is every bit as ardent as her advocacy for bringing the troops home from Iraq, has never cut Bush any slack.

And Sheehan’s not cutting Pelosi any either.

Earlier this year, Sheehan’s frustration with Pelosi’s failure to take the steps necessary to restrict funding for continuation of the war caused the tireless activist to step back from the forefront of the peace movement. But Sheehan’s back as of July 10, leading a caravan and march from Texas to Washington to to demand the ouster of Bush and Cheney.

And when she arrives in Washington July 23, Sheehan she will issue the ultimate challenge to Pelosi.

If the Speaker has not put impeachment back on the table, Sheehan promises to announce that she will mount an independent campaign against Pelosi in November, 2008.

“Democrats and Americans feel betrayed by the Democratic leadership,” says Sheehan, who is furious with Pelosi and her caucus for not doing more to end the war and hold Bush to account.

That betrayal is felt particularly in Pelosi’s San Francisco district, where voters have overwhelmingly endorsed referendums calling for an end to the war and for the impeachment of Bush and Cheney. Now, members of Code Pink–Women for Peace and other groups are camping out in front of Pelosi’s home to protest her failure to represent their views and values.

Sheehan, a California, sums up homestate sentiments regarding Pelosi when the activist says: “She let the people down who worked hard to put Democrats back in power, who we thought were our hope for change.”

The depth of the frustration in San Francisco with the Speaker’s leadership — or the lack thereof — is what makes Sheehan suggest that, “I would give (Pelosi) a run for her money.”

Certainly, Sheehan’s notoriety would make the race a more serious one than the easy runs Pelosi has enjoyed since she won her House seat in a 1987 special election.

Could a Sheehan challenge actually upset Pelosi? That’s a longshot — and Sheehan, who is far savvier about politics than her critics recognize, knows this.

But she also knows that politicians are most likely to respond to political pressure. So Cindy Sheehan is turning up the heat on Pelosi with a political threat that George Bush — after his long and bitter experience of tangling with the “Peace Mom” — would undoubtedly advise the Speaker to treat with a good measure of seriousness.

John Nichols’ new book is The Genius of Impeachment: The Founders’ Cure for Royalism. Rolling Stone’s Tim Dickinson hails it as a “nervy, acerbic, passionately argued history-cum-polemic [that] combines a rich examination of the parliamentary roots and past use of the ‘heroic medicine’ that is impeachment with a call for Democratic leaders to ‘reclaim and reuse the most vital tool handed to us by the founders for the defense of our most basic liberties.’”

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

and no damned her, IMPEACHMENT IS NOT OFF THE TABLE, but her tenure as the Speaker is surely about to come to a SCREECHING F'ING HALT PRETTY DAMNED SOON ONCE WE BEGIN TO RECALL HER FROM HER OFFICE!!!!!!!!

While we`re getting rid of the garbage we might as well get rid of senator Dianne Feinstein & Senator Barbra Boxer beings there both good Bush & Cheney war supporters and of them also think it`s to late to impeach these criminals or even begin the procedings for there tyranic war crimes and war profiteering that people seem to be for getting about.Also Feinstein and Clinton wanting to inact the fairness doctrine to destroy the freedom of the the press ya these people or excuse these criminals of the constitution and others like have got to go either way wether there democrats or republicans if they lied to us the american people they`ve got to away these criminals have damaged our country enough and it is time we take it back and clean it up I hope they enjoy there last terms!!!

So I'm going to ask, what good will it do to impeachment, when the nitwits in power are gone? A new administration will be at hand.

My other fear is Sheehan is out to punish Pelosi for taking impeachment off the table. But is that the right reason to run though? This could take her needed assistance on impeachment now and One-issue campaigns don't work and if she is a serious candidate, her purpose should be to serve in the interests of that dicstrict. One issue campaigns NEVER win, nor is getting back at someone on a particular issue.

Actually punishing Pelosi is exactly the right reason to run against her; Pelosi has not only betrayed those that put her in power, she has also betrayed the constitution and her oath of office. Taking impeachment off the table is probably the biggest mistake Miss Nancy has ever made!

The only thing politicians care about is power and there own self interest; the only way we as voters can get to a politican is to attack there power and self interest by throwing them out of office.

I am all for Sheehan running against Pelosi, this will not limit her in supporting impeachment and ending the war but give her an even more powerful platform from which top speak. Even if Sheehan does not win the election this is an opportunity to make Miss Nancy's life a, much deserved, living hell. Nothing scares a politician more than a threat to there winning an election.

Go Cindy GO; I am not a Californian and can not vote for you but I will give you all the financial support I am capable of. It is high time to hold these scum bag politicians feet to the fire and demand action.

You can't be the "devil's advocate." Sorry. When it comes to the US Constitution, Nancy Pelosi is clearly working with the devil, an evil that has infected our national government for decades.

GWB knows the devil when he sees it. And, in some perverse way, some of us do, too. It's just "different" evil.

So I'm going to ask, what good will it do to impeachment, when the nitwits in power are gone? A new administration will be at hand.

My other fear is Sheehan is out to punish Pelosi for taking impeachment off the table. But is that the right reason to run though? This could take her needed assistance on impeachment now and One-issue campaigns don't work and if she is a serious candidate, her purpose should be to serve in the interests of that dicstrict. One issue campaigns NEVER win, nor is getting back at someone on a particular issue.

How on Earth can you come and say, "One issue campaigns NEVER win…"??! The entire Democratic majority in Congress - Pelosi's very position as Speaker herself, from as recently as last November - was ALL AND ENTIRELY because of the single issue of ending the Iraq War. What planet have you been living on?

Single-issue campaigns work whenever the issue is important enough. And Cindy's issue - IMPEACHMENT as the best means to end Imperial Aggression - is even more concrete and important than solely ending the Iraq War, on which Pelosi dishonestly rode to success last November. Why do you think her Northern Californian (ex-) constituency is so pissed off with her (or hadn't you heard about that)?

I suspect, "ctrenta", that you're not "play(ing) devil's advocate"; that you ARE the Devil's Advocate, who doesn't "love Cindy Sheehan" a single bit. I hope I'm wrong, and if so, will apologize right now for calling you a liar.

Meantime I will address your other dubious questions, as we will doubtless encounter them again in the future. Firstly, the People of Northern California - along with the rest of us, including practically everyone around this world - would be profoundly well-served by Ms. Sheehan, to the extent she can help restore Constitutional Democracy to America and stop this Aggression for Empire. Again, this is important enough to justify her election - to ANY district - on its own merit.

Conversely, Pelosi has done a great disservice not only to her district, but to ALL of us (duh!)

As for a Sheehan campaign diistracting from "needed assistance on impeachment", I must note that this is exactly the same canard - now turned on its head - which was dishonestly trotted out by the House DinoCrap Accomplices In Occupation (to whom you sound suspiciously akin). Cindy's campaign will be ENTIRELY about ADVOCATING IMPEACHMENT - a true, SINGLE ISSUE - and her independent party affiliation has already mitigated any distraction/obstruction from partisan politics.

Avoiding exactly that which so heavily compromises your girl Pelosi. (And will also compromise Kucinich and Paul, if they don't switch to independent parties as well.)

The above - plus the fact of Sheehan's irrefutable history - is proof-positive, BTW, that Cindy is an HONEST candidate, for a change! Hell, she is ALREADY REPRESENTING THE PEOPLE - again, a huge service to one and all, alike.

Sheehan out to "Punish Pelosi"? The WELLFARE OF THIS NATION, indeed of the world, REQUIRES for Pelosi to be held accountable. Just as for every traitor to the Oath of Office - and we all know it. Sheehan never had any personal nor pre-existing beef with Pelosi; the Speaker is being targeted precisely and only for her dereliction of her greater responsibility and thus greater culpability for the continuing damage.

We are not idiots, "ctrenta". We can tell the difference between substance and horseshit (with not a little hint of sexism) and we know this is no petty cat-fight. Perhaps now you do, too.

If you have any other argument(s), bring them on! If you are sincere I think we will learn from each other. And if not, then we will know it by the repetition in the LameStream Media of your fallacious red herrings, above.

Semper Fi,

-Matty in Florida

I like your observations but the tone and language is entirely un-necessary. We can have a civilized discussion without flame throwing or ad hominem (sp.?) attacks. Besides, I always though the dumbest question ever asked is the one never asked? You're response certainly isn't inviting to other people who may have similar and sincere concerns.

FYI, it was a sincere question, making sure we've got all our "t's" crossed without shooting ourselves in the foot. If people on our own side can't ask these kinds of questions, so much for us being a supportive environment priding ourselves on diversity of opinion.

I apologize if I offended or was unfair to you. Neither impeachment nor this board is about me. Can we continue to talk frankly?

It could be very useful to know what/who gave you the impression that single-issue campaigns never work. I know the Press uses it as a term of derision. Nevertheless, again it seems to me all the major elections - since 9/11 anyway - have been decided on the basis of single-issues. Are you seeing something(s) which I missed?

Same question for the rest of your earlier contentions - particularly the source of your idea that a Sheehan campaign would distract her from advocating impeachment. Again, the House Democrats threw up this "issue" regarding their obstruction of impeachment - was all that bombardment where you got it from, or was it something(s) else? Please clue us in if there is some evidence I ignored or over-simplified.

Because I do agree with you wholeheartedly that a Sheehan campaign should be examined fully as well as anticipate future, false arguments which will doubtless be thrown up.

No one stopped listening, just because of what I said, "ctrenta". In any cacs, will you accept my apology - or at least, trust this board - and explain further?

Semper Fi,

-Matty in Florida

I like your observations but the tone and language is entirely un-necessary. We can have a civilized discussion without flame throwing or ad hominem (sp.?) attacks. Besides, I always though the dumbest question ever asked is the one never asked? You're response certainly isn't inviting to other people who may have similar and sincere concerns.

FYI, it was a sincere question, making sure we've got all our "t's" crossed without shooting ourselves in the foot. If people on our own side can't ask these kinds of questions, so much for us being a supportive environment priding ourselves on diversity of opinion.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Support WarIsACrime



Donate.








Tweet your Congress critters here.


Advertise on this site!




Facebook      Twitter





Our Store:





















The log-in box below is only for bloggers. Nobody else will be able to log in because we have not figured out how to stop voluminous spam ruining the site. If you would like us to have the resources to figure that out please donate. If you would like to receive occasional emails please sign up. If you would like to be a blogger here please send your resume.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.