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"Suppose...": Arguments for an Impeachment Resolution


By Bernard Weiner
Co-Editor, The Crisis Papers
September 27, 2005

Suppose it could be proven that the integrity of the vote-counting in the 2004 election had been seriously compromised, and that Bush-Cheney probably lost. What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush Administration told huge lies to get the U.S. military into Iraq, thus leading to the deaths of thousands of American soldiers, the maiming of tens of thousands of others, the deaths of more than 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush Administration effectively has turned over the writing of pollution-control legislation to the corporations that create much of the pollution? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush inner circle knew that a huge terrorist attack was about to go down in the Fall of 2001 and chose, for whatever reason, to ignore the warnings. What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that high officials of the Bush Administration, for political reasons, deliberately revealed the identity of a covert CIA officer, and that of a CIA mole inside Osama bin Laden's inner circle? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush Administration concocted a legal philosophy that would permit the President to ignore laws passed by Congress, and has "disappeared" a number of American citizens into military-base prisons away from public or legal scrutiny -- in effect, making the President into a kind of dictator? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that under rules devised by the Bush Administration, confidentiality between lawyer and client no longer exists, federal agents can enter your home and conduct a search without you being present or even being told it happened ("sneak&peak," it's called), can hack into your computer and read your private emails without you being informed, can check what library books you're reading and prevent librarians from telling you they've done that. What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush Administration devised legal rationales for torture of suspected terrorist-prisoners in U.S. care -- with more than 100 dying while being interrogated -- and that key detainees are being sent to U.S.-friendly countries where extreme torture methods are used? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that because of their incompetence and delay in responding to the Gulf Coast Katrina catastrophe, more than a thousand innocent American citizens drowned or starved to death? What would you do about it?

Suppose it could be proven that the Bush Administration, hostile to science, has denied the reality of global warming and its effects on regional weather changes, such as the increase in monster hurricanes like Katrina and Rita, and thus devoted little or no attention to the deadly implications. What would you do about it?

"WHAT DO I CARE WHAT YOU THINK?"

Well, you get the idea. You or I could continue this list forever -- civil liberties decimated, church&state merging, humongous deficits, activist judges granting more and more power to the central government, certain citizens (especially women and gays) being discriminated against, etc. etc. And then we'd always come back to the same closing question: "What would you do about it?"

The reason I ask is that the Bush Administration has been caught in the spotlight on these issues for the past four-and-a-half years, with documented evidence reported in the mainstream media. Scandal after scandal, corruption after corruption, high crimes and misdemeanors -- and yet, nothing happens.

As Bush himself once said about his critics, almost in these words: "So what, I'm the President. What are you going to do about it? What do I care what you think?" As long as Bush is in the White House, with all the power at his command, with all his loyalist toadies keeping real-world consequences away from him, he feels that he and his inner circle in the bunker with him are untouchable.

And, to date, he has been. So what are you, what are we, going to do about it?

ALMOST AT CRITICAL MASS

I suggest that anti-Bush critical mass is just about achieved in the body politic, especially after the disgraceful, shameful neglect and bungling associated with the Katrina scandal, which led to the deaths of so many American citizens. Nearly two-thirds of those polled these days agree that the Iraq War is a mistake, and the troops should be brought back home soon. Bush's approval rating is now in the high-30% range. If and when in the next few months indictments are unsealed against key Bush Administration officials -- perhaps including not only Karl Rove and Scooter Libby but John Bolton and, maybe as unindicted co-conspirators, Bush and Cheney -- true critical mass could be achieved.

At that point, we don't want to be just sitting there watching the unfolding of the Bush Administration's self-destruction, or witnessing their last, dangerous, martial-law death throes. We need to have protected ourselves, and helped prepare the way for the moral/legal/political turnaround that is coming.

One way to lay the necessary foundations is to get the citizenry talking seriously about the possibility of impeachment. Now. And, in addition to raising the issue amid the chattering class, perhaps the best way of getting the word out more widely is for an impeachment resolution to be introduced in the House. Now.

As I see it, such a resolution will have no chance of success if it is introduced only by a single, and easily dismissable, Member of Congress. No, this impeachment resolution -- calling for hearings into the alleged high crimes and misdemeanors of Bush and Cheney -- ideally should be introduced by a huge number of Representatives, including whatever courageous Republicans can be convinced to join.

There also is strength in numbers, perhaps giving members courage to take the giant step in the company of many of their peers. Who will start the process by talking along these lines to their fellow Members of Congress? My guess is that if someone with the stature of John Conyers and Jim Leach began talking up the idea of an impeachment resolution, others might well consider signing on. Even better would be if anti-war Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi were to bite the bullet and join in. I'd say a minimum of 40 names would be necessary to break through into the major media as a "serious" movement afoot.

WHY MANY REPUBS MIGHT JOIN IN

Why would Republicans want to abandon the Bush cabal that helped turn them into the majority party in Congress? Well, for one thing, they want to get re-elected and Bush could well be an embarrassing and politically radioactive albatross around their necks in 2006. If Bush and Cheney were to go, they could run campaigns devoid of their association with that pair, and might well return to their seats of power in the Congress.

Likewise, CEOs and other business types, including Stock Market brokers and economic powers that be, see the damage being inflicted on the budget, on deficit financing, on the economy, and so on, and might well believe that three more years of this bumbling, ideologically-driven administration could well take the country down with it. Better to cut their losses now by abandoning Bush&Co. to the retribution of the public for four-plus years of reckless rule, and then stabilize things and get the country back on track.

So many retired military leaders and traditional Republicans, conservatives all (in the pre-Bush meaning of that term), already have cut themselves loose from a party kidnapped by far-right extremists. It's not outside the realm of possibility that these GOP forces might coalesce into a movement that sees the forced eviction of Bush&Co. from the White House as in the best interests of themselves, their party, the economy, and the American people in general.

Now, introducing such a resolution calling for impeachment hearings could well fail when it comes up for a vote. But Bush& Co. may have gone so far over the acceptable edge, it's not outside the realm of possibility that such a bill could pass. (Members of Congress were talking about the impeachment of President Nixon in the early-'70s and, though no such resolutions passed, they helped set the stage for Nixon's resignation later as the Watergate scandal unfolded.)

In any event, discussing the reasons for impeachment outside the fringes of internet discourse -- actual governmental officials talking about it -- would significantly alter the respectability of the topic being raised in the public sphere. Suddenly, it would be a serious issue being discussed seriously, both out on the street (where there would have to be unrelenting rallies and civil disobedience) and in the corridors of industry and political power.

NO SEX BUT PLENTY OF DEAD BODIES

The basis for impeachment of Bush-Cheney would not be a personal indiscretion a la Clinton -- extremely bad judgment, but a private sexual act between consenting adults -- but crimes and misdemeanors that have resulted, and continue to result, in the death and destruction of American citizens and their property, both abroad and at home.

As for the wording of such a resolution, my guess is that the experts in such things will opt for a simple, all-inclusive indictment rather than a laundry-list of specific offenses, which will come later. For example, Bush and Cheney took their oaths of office swearing to "preserve, protect and defend" the Constitution and, by implication, the citizens of the United States. They have done neither.

The Constitutional protections designed to shield citizens from an overbearing federal government are in shreds; citizens are being killed in a war based on lies; we Americans are less secure than we were before the invasion of Iraq; and monster storms have become more deadly because of unfeeling incompetence and a denial of scientific realities.

It is long since time to take corrective action. Many progressives and Democrats have been moving in that direction for a long time, but the time may be ripe for significant factions of the Republican Party to join in the movement to pry the grasping fingers of Bush&Co. from the levers of power.

Introducing a resolution calling for impeachment hearings is the first serious step along that road back to political sanity and moral accountability for our country. Let's demand that our Representatives in Congress do it, and if they won't, we will elect those who will.

Copyright 2005, by Bernard Weiner

Bernard Weiner, Ph.D. in government & international relations, has taught at various universities, worked as a writer/editor for the San Francisco Chronicle, and currently co-edits The Crisis Papers (www.crisispapers.org).
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Sir, Good article but I think you are dreaming if you think the American people will wake up to this corruption. It is well past-due. I've been watching the activities of Fitzgerald and the grand juries. At one time I was very hopeful but as time goes by I think the results of these juries will be the same as those in the past. No indictments, no anything and it will be announced that the investigation is closed. This cabal is so well isolated that they are untouchable now. I'm very fearful that the teachings in the Bible are soon upon us, a one world government.

Why shouldn't American church members be the ones to spread the idea of impeachment? After all, it is the religious leaders of this country who are assenting to some of these indiscretions by their silence, and they should understand that means they too are complicit!

There all republicans but that didn't stop me from telling them to begin impeachment investigations into the Bush administration. I will continue to "hound" them until they take notice or I will do my damndest to replace them. We must act now, contact your representative and inform them that they work for you and not only the party that elected them. POLITICS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS. American lives are being taken in Iraq because of lies. Over 1000 people died in Hurricane Katrina because of the incompetence of George W Bush. (I still can't believe it took him 4 days to respond to the hurricane.) I will continue to contact ALL representatives, I hope you will follow suit.

This site sucks! Why don't you check out a real point of view @ http://www.democraticunderground.com

There are lots of informative sites and I'm sure no one here would mind some constructive criticism. But just saying that it "sucks" isn't exactly helpful to anyone.

Is it the site itself that you don't like, or is it some of the opinions expressed here? And, in either case, what are your specific complaints?

I used to run to my car after work to catch as much as I could of the last hour of Rush's show every day. I think I was one of the first that signed up for 24/7 rebroadcasts on the internet. Those days are long gone. Rush wants to blame everything on the liberals and looks at things the Republicans do with a jaded slant, providing excuses and telling you what to think about it like it's not that big a deal. We are not in a right vs left fight, Sir, but a us vs them. Politics of divide and concur has worked so well in this country and we are in this mess because people are attached to their party and refuse to look at the truth. Jobs have left this country, we have a massive debt, we are in an illegal war, your Constitutional rights are gone in the name of terrorism, and the future is dim. This isn't right or left. It is America compliments of the Right and Left.

We must be driving the right crazy. The above link takes you directly to Puke Limbaugh's website. Don't waste your time!

What have you done to rate the Esquire, you put after your name? Are you up for knighthood in England? Are you just some scumbag lawyer who thinks that you're better than the rest of us?

Mr./Ms. Annonymous,

I have practiced law since 1978 in Pennsylvania for your information. I have been posting on this site under my true identity since June, 2005. I understand the Constitution of the United States as is my duty as a lawyer and in accordance with the oath I took in October, 1978 when I was admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

If you want to verify my identity and credentials I invite you to consult Martindale-Hubble, the legal directory. Check in the Pennsylvanina volume and look under Bethlehem. In case that is not good enough for you, check the Pennsylvania Supreme Court records and you should find my ID#27809.

By the way, what is your point in challenging an old English term which has been attached to lawyers for centuries and which came over with the colonists?

I invite you to e-mail me your background at richschaedler@mail2.myexcel.com

WE who regularly post on ADS.org are quite used to you right wing nuts hiding behind annonymity or phony nicknames. Practicing law for 27 years and a deep sense of duty as a lawyer to honor the solemn oath I took to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Unbited States and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is why I use the term after my name. For you to imply that I, in any way, see myself as better than you or anyone else I have the privilege of serving in the lawyer/client relationship indicates your inability to comprehend information and think critically about that information.

Now, go ahead, e-mail me a good lawyer joke. I'm used to them!

God knows I'm impressed, you elitist piece of crap! You're a scumbag lawyer who's part of the number one problem with this country, to much litigation over trivial BS.

Still nameless, eh?

You asked whether I was a candidate for knighthood or a "scum bag lawyer" so I told you.

I have always countered lawyer jokesters with a statement and I'm going to use it with you as a right wing lawyer basheing asshole:

There are two types of people in the world, lawyers and the rest who wish they were one.

I'm still waiting for you e-mail with your true identity.

Common sense obviously not a requirement to be a lawyer, this guy is clearly a troll and you are stupid enough to keep replying to his comments. Wake up moron, he’s playing you!.

I would suggest that those of us who attach our real names and occupations consistently to our commentary on this site not waste our focus on those who merely hurl epithets and have no mental discipline from which to offer constructive ideas.

I don't agree with much of what you write, but I respect your opinion and am disappointed when you allow yourself to be drawn into silliness.

I spend my working day running errands for your colleagues in downtown Miami;the experience leads me to reflect upon the ease with which people demonize those with whom they have no regular contact or familiarity.To me, lawyers are just human beings, some good, some bad,etc.

It's often noted that the U.S. employs a disproportionate percentage of the attorneys in the world.Could the the availablity of dedicated experts at the nuances of a vast and complex legal system have something to do with this country's economic success?

Say, as compared to a country such as Haiti, where property rights are not clearly defined, obviating the fungibility of real property and precluding the accumulation of capital?

Good luck fixing that mess without lawyers!

No, I'm not prejudiced in favor of lawyers; I recognize that there is skewing of the system to their unjust advantage in many cases and that should be corrected.But that does'nt change the fact that lawyers are essential to the function of a modern, technologically advanced and prosperous society.

---The Bikemessenger

Richard,

My name is Steven A. Lawrence and I am from Orlando, Florida. You want my resume, well here it is. Enjoy!

By the way I am not a troll, I just hate lawyers. Just because I mock lawyers does not mean that I'm a right wing nut.

Steve

Well, I am impressed with Esquire. I have enjoyed reading everything he has written on this site. He also knows spelling and grammar. You, on the other hand, have added nothing of value, and you sound immature. People have gathered here to unite in the search for truth, to improve our Government, and to preserve the Constitution of our fine country.

Just wondering how you get to work in the morning........that is, how do you get your head through the door?

P.S. Just in case you are wondering, I've got more degrees to my name than you'll probably ever have time in your life to achieve........not that that means a damn thing.........just thought you'd want to know. Now then, piss off and go back to being a 'ditto head' or a Rush 'suck ass'.

I worked at the polls in November 2004. There were an unusual number of unregistered voters who were alllowed to vote by registering at the polls with only a driver's license ID. These number of unregistered voter was extremely high. TO count these votes takes much longer to count than the regular ballot. The same circumstances was reported in the paper in other districts. Coincidence, I think not!

I worked at the polls in November 2004. There were an unusual number of unregistered voters who were alllowed to vote by registering at the polls with only a driver's license ID. These number of unregistered voter was extremely high. TO count these votes takes much longer to count than the regular ballot. The same circumstances was reported in the paper in other districts. Coincidence, I think not!

I worked at the polls in November 2004. There were an unusual number of unregistered voters who were alllowed to vote by registering at the polls with only a driver's license ID. These number of unregistered voter was extremely high. TO count these votes takes much longer to count than the regular ballot. The same circumstances was reported in the paper in other districts. Coincidence, I think not!

There is no doubt that many more people are sensing the changes coming. The realization is that things cannot remain as they are for much longer.

http://thegalacticpost.blogspot.com/2005/09/diane-there-are-soon-to-be-t...

Check out the cover story on this site http://liberalsrule.com/. I think it is inline with the views of AfterDowningStreet.org reader & commentators.

Great Site, Super Dave, thanks for the link.

Hastert is under investigation and Majority Leader David Drier will seriously consider the resolution.....

However everyone needs Drier to be the one to do it, introduce the evidence to him, and make the case about impeaching Cheney (& then Bush as an accomplice)

WHO CAN DO THIS? THE TIME IS NOW!

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