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Coalition Requests Impeachment of Jay Bybee
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A coalition of organizations including the Center for Constitutional Rights, After Downing Street, Democrats.com, and Courage Campaign has sent a joint letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers requesting the impeachment of Jay S. Bybee. The coalition is encouraging other organizations to join them in this effort. The full text of the letter follows:
Dear Chairman Conyers:
On April 16, 2009, the Department of Justice, with the consent of the President of the United States, Barack Obama, released four previously classified memos relating to the treatment of certain detainees. One of the memos, dated Aug. 1, 2002, was written by then Assistant Attorney General Jay S. Bybee , now Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, and explicitly authorizes the use of water boarding of a detainee, as well as the use of other techniques of interrogation, including stress positions and sleep deprivation. Water boarding was characterized by Attorney General Eric Holder at his confirmation hearings as torture—and it has been widely viewed as such by other nations and international organizations, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, as well as the United States itself in the past.
The use of torture violates the Constitution, laws, and treaties of the United States and is inconsistent with our country’s deepest values. Because of Mr. Bybee’s apparent facilitation of torture, which we believe constitutes a high crime and misdemeanor, we the undersigned, most respectfully urge that the House Judiciary Committee, under your leadership, investigate fully and completely whether sufficient grounds exist for the House of Representatives to impeach the former Assistant Attorney General and present federal appellate Judge, Jay S. Bybee.
We stand ready, of course, to provide whatever assistance we can to you and the members of your Committee.
Vince Warren, Executive Director of the Center for Constitutional Rights
Michael Ratner, President of the Center for Constitutional Rights
Bob Fertik, President of Democrats.com
David Swanson, Cofounder of After Downing Street
Rick Jacobs, Founder and Chair of Courage Campaign
Dave Lindorff, ThisCantBeHappening.net
Tim Carpenter, Progressive Democrats of America