By Rick Lucke
The 110th Congress is setting
a dangerous precedent, essentially codifying Bush’s brand of wrongdoing
instead of demonstrating that it should not be tolerated.
The dereliction of its investigative duty has created the same air of suspicion that the Bush Administration’s obstruction of investigations has done, and action must be taken.
There is no longer any doubt of the
Bush Administration’s crimes. Donald Rumsfeld fled France in October 2007 fearing arrest for
ordering torture under the Bush administration. Criminal complaints have been filed with Germany’s top prosecutor
against Rumsfeld and other high ranking Bush Administration officials
for the same crimes. Bush has openly admitted his complicity in these crimes.
The recently released Congressional Senate Select Committee
Report makes clear
that Bush, Cheney, and various other administration officials knowingly misrepresented facts in making their case for war against Iraq.
As these misrepresentations were conducted in order to engage the U.S.
military in an illegal war, this constitutes fraud against the U.S.
government. The list goes on: 35articles of impeachment were introduced.
Articles of impeachment against both
Bush and Cheney have been introduced in congress. Representatives
of both parties in both legislative houses have suppressed all efforts
to hold the Bush Administration responsible for its crimes. What
are they hiding? What defense can these representatives possibly
have for avoiding their Constitutional duty; what reason?
One reason put forth is fear of public
backlash that would cause more election losses for democrats. This argument inevitably
relies on Clinton’s rise in popularity during his impeachment hearings,
and ignores the fact that Americans saw Clinton’s impeachment for
what it was: a political ploy. Even so, the next presidential
election was one of the closest in history. This backlash argument
is shortsighted; go back further in history to find a more comparable
circumstance: Richard Nixon’s impeachment.
The Bush Administration’s list of
violations of domestic and international laws dwarfs that of Richard
Nixon. During Nixon’s impeachment his ratings dropped quickly
and significantly and staged the 1976 elections with a net gain of 1
seat in congress by Democrats, as well as a slim presidential win; again,
not much backlash effect, but one that favored Democrats.
Other reasons include the expense and
interference with other urgent business. The urgent business this
congress has tackled reads like a David Letterman Top Ten list of silliness (the majority of progressive
legislation vetoed or failed while the White House received virtually
everything it asked for), and consistent additional funding of the Iraq
war far outspends even the most elaborate impeachment hearings.
There simply is no valid argument against impeachment.
The Framers of the Constitution intended
impeachment as a remedy for exactly the kind of president that is George
W. Bush. Every time Nancy Pelosi speaks about the abuses of the
Bush Administration her words ring hollow, as she and many others in
Congress have refused their duty to follow the Constitutional remedy
for such abuses. The overwhelming evidence against Bush begs the
question: Why is impeachment “off the table”?
When representatives fail to uphold
the law, fail to do their Constitutional duty, they must be removed
from their posts. If Congress will not do its duty, then voters
must start with replacing those representatives if there is to be any
hope of restoring what Bush has destroyed. Voters, impeach congress.