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Cindy Sheehan: Impeach or else

Anti-war activist takes on “untouchable” Democrats
BY SCOTT WEAVER, C-ville Weekly, Charlottesville, Va.

On June 20, anti-war activist and perennial pain-in-POTUS’-ass, Cindy Sheehan, will lead a rally on Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall. Sheehan—who in May quit her anti-war activism in disgust only to return recently—is traveling to Washington, D.C., to call for the impeachment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. She’s also announced that she’ll run against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi if Pelosi doesn’t back impeachment by July 23. Here’s some of Sheehan’s conversation with C-VILLE while she was on the road to Montgomery, Alabama.

Cindy Sheehan gave C-VILLE an exclusive interview in advance of her Charlottesville anti-war protest on July 20.

C-VILLE: What prompted your return to activism?

Cindy Sheehan: I always planned on coming back in a humanitarian group called People for Humanity. But when George Bush commuted “Scooter” Libby’s sentence, that really pulled me back in. While I was away, George’s “surge” had been disastrous. Then Dick Cheney says he’s not in the executive branch and doesn’t have to turn over his papers to the National Archives. That was just another flagrant abuse of executive power. It was just the last straw. I had to get back in earlier. I have been deeply disappointed with the Democratic leadership since they took over office. I had no illusions they were going to make much of a difference. Even before they were elected, Nancy Pelosi said impeachment was off the table.

You started your journey in Texas. Where else have you been?

Yesterday we were in New Orleans. We went to a couple of grassroots organizations to see the progress that’s being made—by these organizations, not by the federal government or FEMA. It’s always uplifting to go there, to see mostly young people from all over the country flocking there to feed the people, clothe them, shelter them. You know, they’re my heroes.

In the lower Ninth Ward most of the rubble is gone. But now there are weeds growing, and they told me if the city comes out and mows your weeds and you don’t pay your bill, then they just confiscate your property. It’s just a big gentrification program.

Did the criticism from the left surprise you?

The criticism isn’t coming from the left. It’s coming from the middle. And what I’m saying is pretty radical. That there’s not much difference between the Democratic and Republican parties when you get right down to it. I’m saying the two-party system is failing us.

I never got any heat from that faction until I started speaking out against the Democrats. It seems like if you’re a Democrat, you become untouchable. I just don’t agree with that. When I threatened to run against Pelosi, her response was, “I don’t have time. I’m focusing on ending the war.” How can she say that when just six weeks ago they gave Bush another hundred billion to wage it?

But the Democrats didn’t actually have the votes to override Bush’s veto, did they?

Then don’t give him the money! They can withhold it. Look what the Senate’s trying to do to Cheney. That’s what the Congress is for. Instead of giving Bush a nonbinding resolution or a bill with timelines he’s going to veto, just don’t give him any money. We’ve seen generals and Republicans say that region is not going to be stable with the U.S. military in there. Our presence there destabilizes it every day further, so that there’s less chance of us coming home.

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