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Saturday, June 14, 2008

Impeachment is Not Going To Happen, But...

by Jay Allbritton
Dennis Kucinich stopped by the O'Reilly Factor to talk about his articles of impeachment against George W. Bush. And they called the articles a waste of time. Talking to O'Reilly...

One of the arguments I've heard on the left against impeachment hearings is that it would hurt Barack Obama. As evidence, polls that showed Bill Clinton receiving a huge bump in his approval rating when impeachment proceedings started were cited by Lionel at Air America. Lionel didn't cite any of the polling that shows how the American people feel about impeachment now. There's a good reason for that. No impeachment polls have been taken this year. Late last year 55% of people in this poll believed that Bush's abuses of power raised to the level of impeachment (although about 40% percent of that number believed that despite Bush's impeachable offenses, he should not be impeached). That was over six months ago and all trends are moving toward impeachment. We also have to consider how deeply unpopular Bush is. My God, he has David Letterman firing at will on him every night.

Granted, there's no way that the entire impeachment process can play itself out before Bush leaves office. His lawyer Fred Fielding will gum up the process enough that a vote on impeachment in the House might not even happen before November. But, if Barack Obama is serious about allowing his attorney general to investigate crimes of the Bush administration, letting a few months of impeachment investigations go on before the general election is a good way to build up a record that prosecutors can use later. It's also a good way to keep reminding the American people what John McCain's buddy did to us.

There's also the morality issues. If we don't do this, we'll be repeating the mistake Gerald Ford made when he pardoned Richard Nixon. We send the message that when the President does it, it's not illegal, no matter what it is. Not only does that mean the unitary executive is not dead and buried, but it's also very destructive for a society to lose its grounding in the rule of law.


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