The Impeachment Fence

I’ve been wanting to impeach Bush for years now. Come on, who’s with me? We were on the impeach this Mo-ron train long before everyone else started to hop on, right?

Lied us into war with Iraq, the warrantless wiretapping, the torture in Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, around the world, Arch Chancelor Dick Cheney, outing Valerie Plame, Swifties, NCLB, suspension of Habeas Corpus, Patriot Act… I mean, the last stalwarts who stand behind this president are so fond of saying, “Oh you just hate Bush.”

Well, we do have a long list of grievances, some are actually even impeachable.

So the whole let’s dump the bastard is kinda old hat for some of us. We liked it before everyone else started liking it and it was cool.

But when asked if he thinks we should impeach Bush, Barack Obama has recently said “no.” This a sentiment that Ron Beasley of the Gun Toting Liberal was none too pleased with.

And it’s hard to disagree. Obama states, “I think you reserve impeachment for grave, grave breeches, and intentional breeches of the president’s authority,” even though he admits to being very put off by by the administrations transgressions.

Meanwhile, Martin writing for Scholars and Rogues, is opposed to Pelosi’s similar stance on the impeachment of Bush, though with a little understanding, and not quite as much dismay.

I must admit, for me it’s a tricky situation. As pointed out in a small article yesterday, there is a serious flaw in the strategy for congressional Democrats to be constantly on the attack against the administration. One backed lyzurgyk writing for PSOTD with a slightly more liberal bent.

In essence, a huge part of the low approvals for both congress and the White House is the severely partisan fighting going on in the nation’s capitol, and further pushes against the administration could only further taint the image of the public, boosting numbers for the dreaded “business as usual” question in many polls.

In other words, getting too lusty in one’s attack of the administration could backfire, and backfire hard. I want Bush gone, but now, with less than two years left to go, it’s becoming a question of patience and prudence. Do I want it now, have Pelosi ascend to the White House, and have the entire Democratic government find itself embattled with the public? Or do I wait, hope the president doesn’t cause too much more damage in the hopes that we can put someone better in the oval office in an environment where they can actually do some good?

It’s a gamble either way, but at least I like Obama’s justification for his decision not to impeach the president:

“I believe if we began impeachment proceedings we will be engulfed in more of the politics that has made Washington dysfunction,” he added. “We would once again, rather than attending to the people’s business, be engaged in a tit-for-tat, back-and-forth, non-stop circus.”

One can’t say what the big issue will be come November of next year what the big issue will be for certain. It looks like it will be Iraq, but with continued Democratic efforts to bring the war to an end, it may not be. It could be immigration, but with the most recent bill being tabled indefinitely, that may not be the case.

No one’s crystal ball is clear enough to know what the defining issue will be. But since Newt Gingrich took over the House and the Gopper movement during Clinton’s presidency, our two parties have been waging a blood thirsty war with each other, one that is pissing the American people off. No one wants a two party system that is totally at peace with each other, even if they say they do. People disagree, and that’s what it is about. But there are such things as limits, and we’ve been beyond those limits for quite some time now.

So whatever the issue is, the candidate who provides the most promise not to divide, but to unite, the one who shows the most potential not to continue the vile bickering that has plagued the capitol, that’s the candidate that has a leg up on winning the prize.

And so, while I’m sitting on the Impeachment Fence, I have to say that for me personally, the side against impeachment is starting to look a little greener.

UPDATE: DAMN GROUP BLOGS! I incorrectly sited PSOTD in the above piece, when the actual post was provided by co-writery lyzurgyk. Sheesh, group bloggers…

No, my fault, so let’s take a look at the REAL PSOTD’s opinion.

I wish I could say otherwise, but I am not impressed with Obama:

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama laid out list of political shortcomings he sees in the Bush administration but said he opposes impeachment for either President George W. Bush or Vice President Dick Cheney.

Obama said he would not back such a move, although he has been distressed by the “loose ethical standards, the secrecy and incompetence” of a “variety of characters” in the administration.

Why in the world would you remove an option before facts are known? Again, first you investigate, if the investigation brings out such crimes that are necessary for further action, then you look at impeachment. What’s most disappointing about Obama’s statement is that it is political, rather than legal, in tone. His approach is about what is expedient rather than keeping an open mind towards what is best for the nation in the long-term. Bleh.

I can hardly disagree with the main point, investigate, and if you find something, go after it. And in comments, PSOTD further clarified his stance as such.

I think the long-term health of this country is dependent on governing standards that stand up over time. Bush and company should be investigated, if evidence of an impeachable crime is found it should be tried. If nothing found, then no impeachment. But it is way premature to stay no impeachment before presentation of evidence. The standard of governance provided over the last six years is not acceptable and therefore not sustainable. If we continue to make governing and political decisions purely for expedience and powergrabbing we’re done as a country, sooner rather than later

Again, very hard to disagree. But here’s perhaps what rebuttal I can give. I think the point is, and this was more the reasoning behind Obama’s statement, that we’ve reached a point where it’s almost impossible to do the right thing as well. Congress hasn’t impeached bush for the first six years of his term because, big surprise, same party, and a lot of them were hoping to ride the coattails.

Bush tanks, Democrats come in, and people have more of a business as usual approach than ever before. I mean, Bush has committed impeachable offenses, we don’t need to wait and see, Carl Bernstein I believe made a great case about two or three years ago, and he’s only done more since then.

But, this is the problem, as lyzurgyk points out, people hate government. They HATE the bickering, they hate the wars. An impeachment of Bush will not be seen as government doing its job, even though that’s exactly what it would be. They would see it as more “business as usual.”

I mean, maybe we are at a constitutional crisis now, because politically, you can’t impeach the president. This is what would happen, and the only way an impeachment would NOT result this way is if we find out he got a blowjob.

You impeach Bush, you HAVE to impeach Cheney. I would intentionally NOT impeach Bush if Cheney was the replacement. So you impeach them both. Public gets pissed, business as usual on steroids. Nancy Pelosi takes over the oval office until the 09 inauguration. Every single human that is not a democrat believes it a coup, huge push to paint Democrats as essentially evil.

Democrats in congress now enjoys the lowest approval rate of history, possibly dipping into single digits. Pelosi does not fair better.

08 elections come, the Right Wing Noise machine will be successful, GOP takes back majority in both congress and takes the White House, and we are right back where we started ideologically, another four years of the same shit we had under Bush… probably worse considering the next guy might not be such a dumbass.

It’s hard for me to fault Democrats for not wanting to impeach the president, and the underlying system may be that the system is broken. It would be seen as a coup and just more political rancor, and since there is not anything close to a third party, nor will there be, that can take the reigns, it will be a situation in which you just hand the keys right back on over to the conservatives.

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