Tuesday, April 24, 2007

CONGRESSMAN DENNIS KUCINICH PUTTING ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT OF PRESIDENT CHENEY ON THE TABLE

CLEVELAND, OHIO--This is probably the only way to sink the Bush administration, since Vice President Cheney is doing the real running of the Oval Office. Most Americans have known this since before the Bush campaign and the GOP stole the 2000 elections. A rundown of Cheney's actions would fill several-blogs, but he's surely the overall architect of the last six years of Bush administration policy, with George W. Bush doing the signing-off.

Perhaps they think the U.S. Attorney scandal, and all the other scandals will provide proceedings into criminal prosecutions. Not even an average poker-player tips their hand, so asking Pelosi, Schumer, Reid, Emanuel, and all the other senior Democrats is going to be pointless. Readers also should remember that once impeachment has been secured, the Constitution blocks further criminal-charges and proceedings.

Cheney is the right-choice: he was clearly behind the cooking of intelligence during the run-up to the war in Iraq, as well as direct-involvement in the outing of Valerie Plame as a CIA-operative. He has also been the main-proponent in the Bush administration of the use of torture in the war on terror, and certainly can be viewed as the force behind all the illegal no-bid contracts in Iraq, as well as the illegal warrantless surveillance programs. Anything you hate Bush for, really originates from Dick Cheney. The Nation's John Nichols summarized things neatly yesterday:

Cheney has for decades argued for an expansion of presidential powers that far exceeds anything intended by the founders of the Republic, and with his calculated moves to disempower Congress, to keep official meetings and documents secret, and to get the president to operate by executive orders and signing statements, he has dramatically and intentionally undermined the rule of law and the Constitution. The list goes on, but the point is clear: Never in the history of the Republic has a member of the executive branch been so ripe for removal from office as Richard B. Cheney. And Congress will soon have an opportunity to begin the process of holding the most powerful -- and the most powerfully abusive -- vice president in American history to account. (The Nation, 04.23.2007)

OK, many political-analysts have gotten it wrong is some sense (except Noam Chomsky and Frontline)--Cheney is like a combination of Richard M. Nixon (president), and Spiro T. Agnew (vice president). He constitutes a rogue element within the system, an advocate of the "unitary-executive" theory for decades, and is really a "co-president." This makes him extraordinarily dangerous to our system of checks and balances, as well as to all of our core liberties under what's left of American democracy after America's panic-attack following the events of September 11th, 2001.

It's going to be a tough-fight, because there are several-members of Congress who agree with him on the powers of the presidency. Not only do they want to preserve most of these questionable powers, they also want to expand them, just as he does. Felling Dick Cheney (and George W. Bush) doesn't fit into their assertions of what the presidency is and should be. It would cause the imposition of inevitable--and necessary--limits to the office of president. The Nation piece also makes another fine-point: both President Bush and Vice President Cheney can be impeached at one time--it's written clearly in the Constitution. CQ had some interesting insights into why it's Kucinich submitting the articles of impeachment:

Ohio Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich undoubtedly would like to be one of the front-runners in the 2008 Democratic presidential nominating campaign, but being a distinct longshot does give him the luxury of saying whatever is on his mind. That is something the vociferous critic of the Bush administration and the Iraq war apparently will prove again on Tuesday, when he is expected to announce plans to offer articles of impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney. (CQ, 04.23.2007)

He doesn't really care about being elected, incidentally, it's a symbolic campaign to get the issues he's fighting for into the public dialog. Be wary of those who say this isn't so. You can impeach a standing president and vice president simultaneously. Individuals and institutions who say you cannot are either ignorant, or they're lying to the public to create a misperception of the options open to civil society in removing a criminal administration.

Nobody said it would be easy, but submitting these articles now is crucial. Will Kucinich have a co-sponsor? Perhaps not this time around, but its coming is inevitable. Nine-members of the 82nd Airborne were killed yesterday in a truck-bombing, while dozens-of-Iraqis are slaughtered daily. Situation: critical, and it's never going to improve with more troops or extensions.

But Kucinich is smart, and so is Richard Cheney. Reports came out today that Cheney was again being treated for a "blood-clot." One has to wonder if this is true. Are the vice president's medical records verifiable and public? It's worth investigation, and is a legitimate public concern for someone holding such a high office, as well as the obvious security concerns, if he's truly unable to hold-office due to his health. What's funny is, I'm seeing Vice President Cheney speaking to the press at the Capitol building slamming Senators Harry Reid, Leahy, and the drive to put a timetable on the president's war in Iraq. He looks brimming-with-vigor...

As you can discern from the links, the impending submission of the articles of impeachment were reported yesterday, and as early as the 16th of this April. But it was on March 15th that Kucinich first voiced how serious he was. The shootings at Virginia Tech prompted Rep. Kucinich to wait, and now we have Cheney's people conveniently claiming that the vice president might be ill. In a widely-published editorial, Dave Lindorff wrote:

So far impeachment is a verboten word among Democrats in Congress, where House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and the party leadership have made it clear that anyone who steps out of line and submits a bill of impeachment will be punished. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and the party leadership have made it clear that anyone who steps out of line and submits a bill of impeachment will be punished. The leadership has even gone so far as to attempt—with considerable success—to crush grassroots efforts to introduce impeachment resolutions in state legislatures (such pressure on key Democrats killed such a measure in New Mexico, and derailed another in the state of Washington, and is being used now to attempt to block a third effort in Vermont). (Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel, 03.19.2007)

Why would the Democratic leadership try to protect the Bush White House? Again, to protect those powers of the Executive that they covet, but also because many of them also take marching-orders from America's elites. They still share many of the war's aims, geopolitically, with those of the GOP--just listen closely to their speeches and what they do and do not say.

Fine, it might be true--Cheney might be sick. But the timing is extremely propitious. It seems calculated. Kucinich has talked about the option of impeachment for months, but this writer believes targeting Cheney first is a new-development for the Democratic representative from Ohio. Hey, Rep. Kucinich: time to submit those articles TODAY, and hold a press conference immediately, he's well enough. But, Cheney's sick alright: he's criminally insane, an advocate of torture and so much more.

The Nation's Editorial Yesterday: http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20070423/cm_thenation/1189256_1

AP Today: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070423/ap_on_el_pr/kucinich_cheney

CQ Yesterday: http://www.cqpolitics.com/2007/04/kucinichs_pending_call_to_impe.html

Rep. Dennis Kucinich's statement today: http://kucinich.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=63379

His blog!: http://www.denniskucinich.us/

Dave Lindorff on impeachment: http://baltimorechronicle.com/2007/031907Lindorff.shtml