Text of my letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi

Text of my letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, below the fold:


Madam Speaker,

As a registered Democrat in the state of Massachusetts, I contact you not as a California 8th district constituent, but as a citizen of the United States first, and a party member second. I have already contacted my representative, congressman Capuano, with these concerns.

Our president and vice president have committed grave crimes against the republic and the office of the Presidency. The most obvious and recent was the commutation of Scooter Libby, Vice President Cheney's aide, after a jury convicted and a judge sentenced him to a standard 30 month jail sentence for his crime of perjury and obstruction of justice. These are felonies. But President Bush, while admitting that Mr. Libby broke the law, commuted his sentence anyway - even though he has never done so before for anyone else convicted of the same crime. Citizens must conclude then that rule of law is only for those without friends in the White House.

This is more than just the appearance of conflict of interest. It undermines the whole judicial system. Rule of law has been tarnished at the very top. One could detail any number of other examples where the president has flaunted law, but this is instance is so obvious, so contemptuous of our most basic and cherished principals as set forth by our founders, that there is no more rationale needed to impeach.

In fact, Ms. Pelosi, I argue that it is your RESPONSIBILITY to begin impeachment hearings immediately. If you do not remove those men from office, it will set a precedent that we - the citizens - may never undo by legal means. I fear that we are at the precipice of despotic tyranny. You swore an oath to defend the constitution. Not the Democratic party. Not your congressional seat. And most certainly not Mr. Bush, as his aide seemed to imply recently during senate testimony.

Seek out responsible conservatives who realize the danger to our republic. They exist. As Bill Moyers has shown in his interview with Bruce Fein and John Nicols. It is clear that the Democrats do not have a supermajority to force the issue. But you could raise one with the help of responsible Republicans who would be willing to take the helm after Bush and Cheney's removal from office. All we need is another honest Republican, like Gerald Ford, at the ready.

If you fail to act, you and the 110th congress, may well be remembered in history as that feckless and cowardly legislature that handed a modern Caesar his dictatorship without even a whimper or a cry. Today, you needn't hide a knife under your senate robes, legal means exist to achieve the same result. Tomorrow, that may not be the case. Democrats are watching, Speaker Pelosi. Please act. I don't want to live under the thumb of a despotic state. I am a citizen, not a subject.

Thank You,
J. Maynard Gelinas
ADDRESS REDACTED
Registered Democrat

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Speaking Of Madame Pelosi. . .

(#50777)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .witness her latest coup: keeping the nation safe for predatory attorneys out to sue public minded citizens. Nice job, Nancy--if things don't work out for Edwards in the presidential campaign, he can make big bucks helping CAIR sue people.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Not a single Dem quoted

(#50791)

If you read the original Washington Time report, you'll note that not a single Democrat was quoted. I wonder why. Did the reporter not ask for a statement, or was no statement forthcoming?

http://www.washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070719/NATION/70719001/1001

Well, here are the facts, if you're really interested.

(#50849)

121 Dems voted against Peter King's amendment - I'm sure you can find out who they were, but among the usual suspects, Rahm Emanuel, Homeland Security Chair(!) Bennie Thompson, Nita Lowey and Jerry Nadler all voted against it. (Link.)

On a related front, the Flying Imams lost a bid to exclude the press from their efforts to prosecute everyone who found their suspicious aircraft activities, well, suspicious. Apparently sharia law is silent WRT press freedoms and the people's right to know what goes on in court.

I used to be with it, but then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with isn't it, and what's it seems scary and weird. It'll happen to you.—Abraham Simpson

It's the Moonie Times

(#50808)

Falsity can be assumed.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Yeah. Because had it been published in the NY Times

(#50859)

the story would have magically rewritten itself to be true. Like the Wall Street Journal's editorial page, the Washington Times editorial board promotes a perspective I disagree with. But their reporting is generally fine and within journalistic norms.

I would like to have seen note of an attempt to contact a senior Democrat for comment though. Just knowing they were _unwilling_ to comment is worth reporting. IMO: that reporter was sloppy.

Indeed

(#50797)
M Scott Eiland's picture

If I had been responsible for something like that, I wouldn't want to be quoted regarding it either. I suspect that they will be forced to deal with the issue at length rather soon, however--selling out loyal citizens for the benefit of greedy trial lawyers (and the incidental benefit of terrorists) isn't a particularly palatable Democratic congressional tendency. . .

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

I'm glad they stripped it

(#50801)
HankP's picture

the possibility of abuse is too great for individuals to not have recourse to the courts.

BTW, isn't the "greedy trial lawyer" stuff getting a bit old? Everyone hates lawyers until you need one.

I blame it all on the Internet

AFAICT.....

(#50869)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

....you still hate 'em even when you need one. They're kinda like colonoscopies.

Fair Enough

(#50830)
M Scott Eiland's picture

I hope you take solace in that "victory" as the Democrats are being beaten enthusiastically about the head with it. The image of trial lawyers assisting CAIR in degrading the ability of the American people to report legitimately suspicious behavior without the fear of being sued is bound to be a tad damaging in certain quarters to those who are seen as responsible for said degrading.

As for the second paragraph, I am a firm believer in giving judges the tools to slap down lawyers who are inclined to pursue actions in bad faith knowing that the downside of failure will not be overly onerous. A few lost tickets should get the message across.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

I really doubt

(#50831)
HankP's picture

we'll be hearing much about this again, honestly. There will probably be a few cases, but it will be rare.

As to your second point, if you're claiming that the state bar associations aren't doing a good job with quality control, I'd agree with you. But that doesn't create greedy lawyers - you need greedy plaintiffs to do that.

I blame it all on the Internet

Lawyers Have A Right. . .

(#50833)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .and an obligation to say "No" when a client comes to them with a claim they believe to be genuinely frivolous. Furthermore, judges have an obligation based on their oath to slap down lawyers who don't live up to that duty. I hold both lawyers and judges fully responsible for failing to live up to that obligation, no matter how many intellectually dishonest legal commentators choose to praise them instead.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Nah, its' not old. None of us here could probably

(#50822)

afford the greedy trial lawyers anyway, we'd have to go for the garden variety.

My pets are the tobacco Settlement lawyers. I know you don't smoke but those of us who do are still paying them nine years later with no end in sight. Over 300 lawyers. $30B over 25 years LINK.

the possibility of abuse is the reason

(#50818)

it was put in. If you act in good faith, a lawsuit shouldn't follow. This is the reason they have passed "Good Samaritain Laws" throughout the country.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

Ah, but the law says nothing

(#50826)
HankP's picture

about "good faith", at least as far as I could tell. And one way to determine if it was done maliciously would be for someone who had evidence to sue them.

I blame it all on the Internet

Do we have anything...

(#50847)

...not from Powerline or the Moonie Times on this? Because both are liars in service of their causes.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Only thing I can figure is that some people don't want to

(#50819)

protect Whistleblowers. All this time, I thought that was a leftist tenet; long live the whistleblowers. Guess not.

It is akin to the Wall put up by a previous Admin

(#50821)

which forbad security agencies from talking to each other.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

While You're At It. . .

(#50668)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .you can send her another letter asking her to impeach this judge, for refusing to act in accordance with his solemn duty to provide Mr. Wilson and his blushing bride with a big payday (and the DKos/HuffPo/Firedoglake asylum with a new national holiday). I'm sure the Lady of The House will be quite receptive.

[Scott leans back in his chair and hums to the sound of thousands of little moonbat heads exploding in outrage at Judge Bates for not going along with the program]

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

I'm sure someone else asked this...

(#50690)

but this graf from the Post story is interesting:

U.S. District Judge John D. Bates said that Cheney and White House aides cannot be held liable for the disclosure of information about Plame in the summer of 2003 while they were trying to rebut criticism of the administration's war efforts levied by her husband, former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV. The judge said such efforts were certainly part of the officials' scope of normal duties.

Did Judge Bates really mean to say that outing a CIA agent is OK if it's done for political purposes? Talk about your slippery slopes here...

That said, I think the suit was silly. The damage done here to Valerie Plame was incidental: the real damage was done to Plame's foreign contact when she was working undercover. The Bush League got away with it, and as much as I'd like to see Bush or Cheney forced to testify under oath, that's not likely to happen.

The best thing Democrats can do is wait. I still think the Presidency is theirs to lose in 2008, and the first thing a Democratic President should do is rip down the curtains put up over the past eight years. Let the sunshine in, and let what happened during the Bush-Cheney years be exposed to public scrutiny.

"I've been on food stamps and welfare.  Anybody help me out?  No!" Craig T. Nelson (6/2/2009)

That's always been the case

(#50730)

since Cheney was never going to face criminal charges.

Everything else we have heard out of this WH in relation to Wilson and his charge of Administration perfidy, has been about minimizing the political price of the decision made at the highest levels to undercut his credibility, even to the extent of outing his wife as a CIA operative.

Unless Cheney is impeached, the Administration of GW Bush will have got away with it, because thanks to Cheney/Bush any new Administration will have more than enough on their plate to demand more time and effort than proper exposure would require. Best leave it to the historians to have at them, I suspect history will not be kind.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

What damage?

(#50719)

"...the real damage was done to Plame's foreign contact when she was working undercover."

Given the fact that she once worked the Athens Station and that is known, it is highly unlikely she was ever a NOC; once you get stuck in that Station list, you tend to stay there. The Station guys do run nets but since the host nation generally watches them very closely, it's generally a disruptive or cover net and rarely produces much. The NOCs run the important nets.

Since Plame came back from her last overseas station in 1998, by 2003, any net she was running had almost certainly folded by 2003. Thus the likelihood that any damage was done is quite small. Infinitesimal, in fact.

I just don't buy the hydra-headed theory that

(#50723)

the CIA asked for the investigation out of (turf war/pique/secret liberal tendencies/need to cover its transit of WMDs to Syria), not because of any real damage.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Okay. NT

(#50734)

Straw heads don't explode. -nt-

(#50685)

.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Straw? Really?

(#50772)
M Scott Eiland's picture

I always assumed they were filled with sawdust and hemp fibers.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Oy vey.

(#50578)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

at the precipice of despotic tyranny

C'mon, Maynard. This kind of nonsense is why I can never manage to take the left very seriously for very long. Utter disconnect from anything that remotely resembles reality. Libby's commutation is no more a threat to my liberty per se than the use of any other Constitutional power.

It's true

(#50652)
HankP's picture

that the Libby pardon itself, while indicative of a corrupt administration, is not grounds for impeachment. The claim (and actions) that this administration can grab anyone, anywhere, hold them without resort to habeus corpus, torture them, and deny access to attorneys, is a far better reason to impeach and convict.

I know that your measure of all things is whether it will personally affect you, and these probably won't. However, to deny that they are impeachable offenses based on statistical probability is not what I'd consider a principled argument.

I blame it all on the Internet

You might wish to wait until your reason to impeach is

(#50663)

tested in the Courts, as it is sure to be. You may or may not have a case.

While the fact that you believe those things are evil or wrong; impeachable efforts in any event, it may come as a surprise to you that others who see themselves just as principled as you differ.

Lot of that stuff going around, BTW: LINK.

Color me surprised

(#50664)
HankP's picture

that the police want more power. Not much of an argument, I'm afraid.

I blame it all on the Internet

My plan is to always meet flawed arguments with equally

(#50670)

flawed arguments... :)

The point was, of course, that police most everywhere want more power, we are not alone.

They in the UK will likely not succeed because Parliament will say no. Here in the US, our Congress is about one notch (hmm, maybe two...) dumber than their Parliament so, when asked, they said yes. Means nothing until its tested in Court there or here.

As I keep trying to tell you guys, it doesn't have to be your way to work and the system works if you'll just give it the time that was inserted by design to keep people from over reacting and doing something stupid...

See what happens...

(#50593)

...next time you're in business competition with a crony, I guess. Or your kid happens to be in the same building as an INS raid.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

I'm already....

(#50649)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

....in competition with political cronies, I'm in New Jersey. And if my kid gets picked up in an INS raid, I'll just call my cousin at INS. Ways and ways, PM.....

Right, right...

(#50684)

...forgot the Fundamental Cry of the Conservative: "I've got mine!"

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

As Opposed To The Fundamental Cry. . .

(#50769)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .of the Liberal: "Give me yours--or else!"

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Zing!- nt

(#50854)

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

5

(#50774)

nt

It is better to get what you want than it is to be right. -me

Cry of Humanity....

(#50695)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

....perhaps. The complaints are predicated purely on the not-having, and cease when something is got.

(At least until it is noticed that another monkey in the vicinity has more. Lather, rinse, repeat.)

That's actually not how some folks work.

(#50720)

That is, there's a reason why the Spiderman character became iconic and endured.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

People like to kid.....

(#50761)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

It won't end the Bush nightmare

(#50540)

Cheney would resign before he was impeached and Bush would nominate Don Rumsfeld of someone just as bad to be his new VP.

As much as I would like to see Bush & Cheney impeached it just isn't a practical solution to any of the problems we have now.

"And now you run in search of the Jedi. They are all dead, save one. And one broken Jedi cannot stop the darkness that is to come." -Darth Sion

I'd like to see Cheney impeached

(#50591)
HankP's picture

because he deserves it, and just because Bush nominates a new VP doesn't mean that Congress would approve it.

I agree that none of these scenarios are going to happen unless something really significant happens - like a White house aid getting a conscience, or some other equally improbable event.

I blame it all on the Internet

He does deserve it but it won't happen

(#50599)

If the Dems manage to pass articles of impeachment Cheney will resign, Bush will pardon him and then Dubya will nominate someone equally as bad as Cheney, or maybe worse. At the end of all of that Iraq will still be a mess and Bush will still not care about public opinion. I just don't see the upside to expending all those resources to try and impeach Cheney or Bush.

"And now you run in search of the Jedi. They are all dead, save one. And one broken Jedi cannot stop the darkness that is to come." -Darth Sion

Bush can't pardon an impeachment

(#50620)

and no replacement will have the same command of the government bureaucracy that Cheney has. Republicans have bottlenecked all legislative action in the Senate, what else does Congress have on its plate?

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

You can't be impeached if you aren't the VP anymore...

(#50636)

...but you can be tried for your high crime and/or misdemeanor. That crime would be what Bush pardons.

Re: Cheney's command of gov't

As General De Gaulle once said, "The graveyards are full of indispensable men." There is someone better than or as good as Cheney at working the strings of gov't. I can't name him or her, but these people do exist. When I was thinking of someone worse than Cheney I was thinking of someone who would think as Cheney does but who sells it much better. Such a person would be worse than Cheney b/c a VP slot is great for a future run at the WH. As it stands now Cheney will, most likely, never be more than he is right now.

"And now you run in search of the Jedi. They are all dead, save one. And one broken Jedi cannot stop the darkness that is to come." -Darth Sion

Apparently, based on work done thus far this year,

(#50624)

not much -- and that's good news for the Nation. The less those jackanapes do, the better off we all are.

Spoken

(#50632)

like a true partisan, welcome to the discussion.

Now go out and research what this Congress has achieved over its short duration when compared to previous sessions under Republican control. While you are at it why not enlighten yourself regarding Republican use of the filibuster in the current session as opposed to its use by Democrats in the previous one. Finally, take note that Congress under the Democrats has restored the much needed oversight function of the executive and tear up those talking points because they aren't getting you any traction.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

Record low poll numbers

(#50645)

for - any - Congress - ever is all I've seen from them. Well a lot of hot air too, but to be fair you can't just tag that on this Congress.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

If I wanted traction, I wouldn't be posting on a blog.

(#50643)

You yet again take an unbiased statement and try -- futilely -- to twist it to your warped, partisan agenda.

I said this year because this one promised much (as do they all) and yet again has delivered little (as do most all, both parties in charge).

My perception is that over many years, the use and the misuse of the filibuster, parliamentary tricks and local rules by both parties has been relatively equal, generally for partisan as opposed to national gain and fairly squalid.

You may not recall but I have long stated my opinion that the nation works better with one party on each end of Pennsylvania Avenue and that I don't really care which is where. I have further stated the less work any Congress does the more we benefit. You did note there was no partisan label to my comment, you merely apparently allowed your paranoia and defensiveness to take over.

I then said the less those jackanapes (meaning all Congroids, both parties, any year) do; the better off the rest of us are.

Thus I merely concisely (for once...) restated my long held opinions and you took a standing broad jump and landed in the mud. My apologies for any lack of clarity on my part which assisted you in doing that...

And if they don’t impeach

(#50493)

what then? Do you go Green? Man the barricades?

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

No...

(#50494)

Both the Green and Libertarian parties are too extreme for me. The Democrats and Republicans must both act to stop this madness. And if they don't. Hell. I don't know what will happen.

I fervently hope the executive, under either party control, would relinquish the power this administration has attempted to consolidate. But I strongly doubt that will happen.

What will I do? I don't know. But I sure as hell won't belong to any political party afterward.

"would relinquish the power"

(#50579)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

You mean you want the next executive to re-write the Constitution?

That's a funny question to ask

(#50602)

Since I believe I am arguing fervently to maintain the constitution our founders intended.

Ahem.

(#50651)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

Did they intend to write "and he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment" or not?

Yes. Those may not be the words

(#50793)

But they are most certainly the intent. Abusing the pardon privilege in order to obstruct justice over crimes committed within the executive is a clear violation of the oath of office. The conspiracy is between all four: Libby, Gonzales, Cheney, and Bush. They are not fit to hold office.

You do? Hmm. Well, we can differ on that. NT

(#50613)

That is a bit disingenuous

(#50495)

your letter is constructed in a manner that if the President and the Vice President are not impeached irreparable damage will be done to the republic. However, if your elected representatives fail to act all you can muster is disassociation from either party? This leads me to believe you are only employing political hyperbole to compel the Speaker to do your bidding, because the threat to the republic can’t be all that grave if the only act you can think of to save it is to become a registered independent.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

If the Bush use of signing statemnets

(#50500)

becomes accepted as legitimate, we will cease to be a Republic. Too many pieces of legislation have been reversed 180 degrees by Executive Order to believe otherwise.

Same with the refusal of Harriet Miers to testify and Sara Taylor saying her oath was to the President.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Posh

(#50505)

similar things were said about the income tax one hundred years ago, and look, the republic survived.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Well okay

(#50518)

But remind me to say "I told you so" when President Hillary negates a Congressional mandate and does the exact opposite of what the legislation provides.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Feh

(#50523)

Hilliary's chances worsen by the day. As it stands now I'm guessing it will either be Edwards or Obama.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Feh indeed. Trial lawyers and....

(#50580)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

Exactly. What is your worst nightmare of Democratic despotism?

(#50520)

My worst nightmare of Republican despotism would be Guatemala, or El Salvador, here in the United States of America. Government thugs with M-16s killing anyone who utters a single word against authority. Or perhaps even the families of those opposed to the regime. That is an extreme, of course.

I assume the Republicans worst nightmare of Democratic despotism would be turning the US into some nightmarish amalgamation of Disneyland and Sesame Street. You know, Elmo in riot gear with an M-16 saying: "EAT YOUR COOKIE AND BE HAPPY. OR ELSE!!!"

Actually, I would picture....

(#50582)
Bernard Guerrero's picture

....a disgusting egalitarianism of outcome that emphasizes nonsense like skin-color, grievance and "fairness" over talent and ability. Backed up by AK-47s, of course.

Harrison Bergeron vs. Tulia

(#50592)

One of them actually happened.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Hell on earth

(#50585)

right there [shudder]. No doubt courts would be replaced with a Council of Elders too.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

I swear I read "Council of Elmos"

(#50737)

lol!

Heh

(#50853)

and that is a much better description by the way.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

That's extreme? Really?

(#50533)

Your Republican nightmare scenario seems par for the course on much of the port side blogosphere, and for elected Democrats who hearken 9/11 to the Reichstag fire. So as far as I can tell it isn't that extreme at all, at least for those predisposed to think that way.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Oh come on

(#50535)

It's just a good excuse to bring up the comparison with Democrats wanting a despotic Disneyland. Because I think it's both true and funny.

With their prices

(#50545)

you don't need the Democrats for a despotic Disneyland.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

lol!

(#50550)

.

Imagine red dawn

(#50522)

where the freedom loving hicks are the republicans and the communist paratroop hordes are president Clinton's storm troopers. Thats my mind's eye of their conception of president Hillary :)

gotta love that Cuban commander

(#50526)

that film was such cheese. I loved it as a kid though.

WOLVERINESSSSSSS!!!!!

Yes. I honestly believe that

(#50497)

Irreperable damage to the republic will result. The republic will fall, to be replaced by a despotic executive.

But what is it you would *like* me to say? Because I'm not going there. My next legal recommendation would be for the state legislatures to force a constitutional convention.

I’d like you to be honest with yourself

(#50503)

To my eyes Libby’s pardon is just another in a long line of partisan favors. While I think a compelling case can be made that it is unjust there is plenty of injustice in the world, that’s life. However, his pardon certainly isn’t a threat to the republic, and I’d hazard to guess that 10 years from now when the name Scooter Libby is mentioned the general reaction will be- Scooter who? If you feel differently then fine, but I’d expect if you really felt the republic was in danger because of it you’d be motivated to do something more than merely dropping your Democratic registration in Massachusetts. And I don’t see where Republicans and Democrats at the state level would find the motivation to force a Constitutional Convention without the backing of their masters in Washington. After all DC is the goal for a great many of them and it seems obvious to me they are company men willing to play the game to get there.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

It IS a threat to the republic

(#50515)

Whenever the executive usurps and trumps the power of another government branch for personal gain, that is a lawless executive. If the executive is allowed to break the law here, the executive will break the law elsewhere. And more often than not, the citizenry will never know until long after the fact.

There are many many other troubling policies of this executive that thwart the most basic ethics of our republic, from extraordinary rendition and confinement without legal representation to lies offered to congress and under oath by the Attorney General.

Where this goes so scares me that I cannot but conclude that to ensconce these precedents into law would be the undoing of the republic.

Yet all you’re willing to do

(#50521)

if these injustices stand is drop your affiliation as a Democrat? If so it does not seem to me you’re passion for the Legislative and Judicial branches of government run that deep when push comes to shove. Anyway, just because you’re not a registered Democrat does not mean you won’t vote that way in future elections anyhow. So I really don't see what the Democrats stand lose by not paying any attention to calls for impeachment by you or others like you.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Again I ask: What are you asking me to say?

(#50528)

Because I am not willing to promote violence against the state.

I'm asking you to tell me

(#50541)

what action you're willing to take to defend the republic. You're the one who sees it in danger, yet I'm left to conclude, if you're being serious, it doesn't mean all that much to you if the only action you can muster is not identifying with either party, something a plurality of Americans already do I believe.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

What would you do? n/t

(#50546)

aeiou sometimes y

"And now you run in search of the Jedi. They are all dead, save one. And one broken Jedi cannot stop the darkness that is to come." -Darth Sion

If I really felt the republic was in danger?

(#50558)

I'd plan my resistance commensurate to the threat. If the danger was an armed coup of some sort then I'd exercise my right to bear arms and get my ass in shape, if it was from a creeping executive stifling opposition through quasi-legal schemes then I'd try and get myself arrested as a political agitator. Things like that. If I thought the threat was from two corrupt parties I'd join a third or start my own.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

You said it

(#50568)

Not me. But behind this screen, I'm smiling.

Heh! Just like Cindy Sheehan?

(#50565)

If it was from a creeping executive stifling opposition through quasi-legal schemes then I'd try and get myself arrested as a political agitator.

Jez sayin . . .

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Thing is

(#50574)

there has to be a real threat, otherwise you just look like a kook or a crank.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Perhaps. . .

(#50569)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .though hopefully without the distasteful public pseudo-fellatio on Hugo Chavez and the anti-Semitic babbling.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Sheehan is just a clueless mom

(#50572)

She has no policy, legal, or historical expertise. She's just a mom who lost her son in war and got very pissed. For that I feel great sympathy.

It's a shame she chose to surround herself with terrible advisers though. And even more of a shame she did not recognize her limits and instead focus attention on the issue she most cares about: the death of her son in war. As such, she has been distracted from her cause and is now a pawn for any number of other interest groups.

That Chavez thing was just an unbelievable blunder.

Hmmm. Check, bet, or fold?

(#50544)

Well, I'm not prepared to fold.

Cathartic, I hope, for your sake.

(#50486)

I really liked the "Pelosi with a knife under her Senate robes" allusion to Brutus as a Democrat, though. But what a surprise that you see Bush as Caesar - I sure don't. And who does Rove play - Popeye?

I used to be with it, but then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with isn't it, and what's it seems scary and weird. It'll happen to you.—Abraham Simpson

No catharsis. Still angry.

(#50492)

But what role does Rove play? I dunno. lol! I hadn't even considered it. I just wanted to compare the knife with impeachment. *\shrug\*

Sonny, I think you need to read the U.S. Constitution

(#50430)

and then edit heavily.

By the way, MA is a Commonwealth.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

I have read the constitution. But this is about criminal conduct

(#50452)

I disagree. Vehemently. In my opinion both President Bush and Vice President Cheney have committed conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of justice while in office. That is a felony.

This is not about partisanship or party. These men have broken their oaths of office and should be removed forthwith.

As you say, that is your opinion. Others differ. I differ, for

(#50461)

example but neither your opinion nor mine is the determinant. The House is and unlike you and I, we can voice opinions all over the place.

So can House members but if they want to get serious, they have a responsibility to the nation and must weigh the cost of pursuing punishment for the crimes you see with not only the standards of evidence that are germane and whether such a prosecution would be successful.

Based on the last frivolous Impeachment, I suspect they think that on balance it's not a good idea to have another impeachment proceeding that results in no conviction.

Aside from the fact the even if the house moves to impeach, you still have the Senate sitting in judgment and the numbers don't look good for those who espouse impeachment.

Given your suggestion, Madame speaker would nominally become the President (thus you are advocating a massive conflict of interest...) and I'm not at all sure that the House, in its entirety, would want that to occur...

This why a paleo-con needs to be named Speaker

(#50501)

once the House votes to impeach. The Speaker of the House need not be a member of Congress.

House votes to impeach then Pelosi takes a sabbatical and someone such as Colin Powell or even Bob Dole (Heh!) is elected speaker.

Then the senate votes. No Democratic coup for POTUS.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

I think John McCain is the perfect interim President

(#50532)

He has personal animus against the Bushies, he holds conservative social views, he has excellent military credentials, and I believe he would execute his oath of office faithfully.

I prefer John Warner

(#50536)

but if Reid/Pelosi offer the job to McCain, I'd be okay with that, too.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

You're a busy man Bill

(#50504)

I think your house would be a better use of your time and energy rather than these impeachment fantasies.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Its a long shot to be sure

(#50527)

but very much more plausible than ANY scenario that results in POTUS Nancy Pelosi.

Me? I'd offer the position to John McCain. Tell him that he can be POTUS if he can round up 17 GOP Senators. With his campaign busy lawn-darting, it might be his only chance.

Even if nothing comes of this, it would be fun to troll Chuck Hagel (another option) with the possibility.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Well

(#50553)

none of that seems overly reality based to me. Time after time critics of the Administration say these little controversies are the magic bullet that is going bring Bush/Cheney down, yet they all end in bitter disappointment. Methinks some of you fellas are letting your emotions get the best of you.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

I'd remind John McCain about that rumor

(#50555)

Karl Rove spread during the 2000 primaries. The rumor that McCain was actually the natural father of those little brown babies he and his wife adopted.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

And

(#50560)

that is going to compel him to support impeachment at the cost of all future support from the Republican base? This must be one of those nuanced arguments because I just don't see it.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Future support

(#50590)

Senator McCain is not a young man, and he has to realize by now that he is not going to be President. That's not much of a threat any more.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

If what you say is true

(#50603)

why is he wasting his time campaigning then?

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

He hasn't accepted it yet. -nt-

(#50605)

.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Then the bases reaction

(#50610)

remains a threat.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

Hey. . .

(#50525)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .if I can dream about ARod being traded to the Dodgers, Bill can dream about convoluted impeachment scenarios. Fair is fair.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

True

(#50562)

because everyone knows A-Rod is coming to Detroit as their shortstop and Carlos will moved to first.

"We should not tie the hands of law enforcement in the effort to bring these terrorists to justice"- Leon E. Panetta

I'm happy just using the idea

(#50529)

to troll John McCain and Chuck Hagel.

"Listen guys, just find 17 votes and YOU can be POTUS."

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

This cannot work if the Dems act unilaterally

(#50491)

The Democrats will lose if they attempt to take the White House by impeachment. IMO: they must find a minority of Republicans willing to buy-in. Then select a responsible conservative for the role of interim president. Just like President Ford did after Nixon.

I think John McCain is the perfect person for that role (though I don't know if he agrees). For numerous reasons. It would be an appropriate turnabout.

No provision for that, even Bill's scenario is dicey.

(#50547)

You'd have to impeach one or the other, get a new VP appointed and go from there. Not going to happen.

Using your criteria for impeachment, I think probably all of the 11 I've lived under except perhaps Carter would qualify for impeachment...

I don't expect the next two or three to be much better so you may be looking at a lot of anger.

The last

(#50556)

2 guys to hoe this row both resigned, in succession.

Although I would prefer to see impeachment (of Gonzales and Cheney though not necessarily Bush) as a salutary lesson to those who will follow, I could live with resignation.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

Parallel bills of impeachment

(#50554)

Pro forma hearings in the House, 4 hours maximum. Its all pre-arranged in the House office buildings.

Aim for total surprise. Start at 10 AM and impeach Bush, Cheney and Abu Gonzalez by 4 PM. Of note: there are no filibusters in the House.

Pelosi steps down as Speaker at 4:15 PM and at 4:45 PM the chosen caretaker is elected Speaker, be it John McCain, John Warner, Chuck Hagel, Colin Powell, Jim Leach, Bob Dole, Ken White. Who-ever best floats the boats of 17 GOP Senators.

That night start running TV ads in the home states of every GOP Senator up for re-election in 2008.

Then its off to the Senate.

Pure politics, exactly as the Constitution intended.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Well then you need to edit your diary

(#50455)

because you fail to make the case that you now espouse. So if you have some information you would like to share with Nancy, please have at it. We all look forward to your analysis.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

I'm the only one who edits my diaries for you

(#50463)

don't ever forget that bub.

also, this is a letter that he's showing us. why would maynard edit it into a letter he didn't send?

stop the madness.

That is a letter

(#50458)

And no. I will not edit it. Or change it. Or in any way validate your presumptions. The evidence is at its face and clear as a brook. They are criminals.

You disagree. And that is fine.

you present no evidence

(#50466)

hence the letter lacks substance.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

I think you'll find Roger Taney making the same argument

(#50524)

in Ex Parte Merryman and as for the results well history's like that sometimes.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

sweet sweet irony

(#50519)

I thought you were dead.

Or at least lurking.

By all means, go for it

(#50423)
Bird Dog's picture

If history repeats itself, it just might be the only thing that'll move Bush-Cheney's approval ratings upward.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Perhaps

(#50454)

But it is necessary. Even if the Democrats lose as a result.

Thought you didn't like them. -nt-

(#50424)

.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

I have no confidence in Bush-Cheney,

(#50478)
Bird Dog's picture

and my confidence levels are about the same for the Democrats in Congress. An impeachment saga will distract the Dems from pretty much all other relevant legislative business, and I count that as a plus.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

An impeachment saga

(#50557)

would be a very bad move.

No impeachment unless a GOP caretaker volunteers to be interim POTUS. Then, a blindingly fast impeachment.

No saga, no parade of witnesses. No grandstanding.

Start at 10 AM and impeach by 4 PM. Gonzalez, Cheney and Bush in a trifecta package.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Hmm...

(#50482)

...interesting restatement.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Good for you

(#50420)
HankP's picture

but I'd recommend starting with Cheney first.

I blame it all on the Internet

Gonzales

(#50428)

Just to give the machinery a workout and whet some appetites, wouldn't hurt any in helping to flush out Rove also.

Then Cheney.

With Cheney gone Bush can stay out his term and continue to play President on condition he accepts the guidance of the GOP's grandees, who will in turn receive direction from the Democratic leadership in Congress to start winding things down in Iraq.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

Dream on. And focus your hopes on a meaningless spectacle

(#50485)

instead of something constructive, like getting the people currently wielding power in Washington to spend more time on the nation's future than they do on venal scheming for earmarks. Or like making sure the new boss, D or R, isn't same as the old boss.

I used to be with it, but then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with isn't it, and what's it seems scary and weird. It'll happen to you.—Abraham Simpson

New boss, old boss.

(#50589)

Accountability might be a way to approach that problem.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

Yes it's but a dream

(#50537)

However:

The case for removing Gonzales for 'performance' reasons is a no-brainer and there is widespread public support for removing Cheney, who is more unpopular than the misadventure in Iraq. Moreover Cheney is the key to hobbling Bush, without Cheney's mastery of government bureaucracy and Gonzales/Rove running interference, all the inflated majesty of the office would be peeled back to reveal Bush as the ineffectual cartoon figure he truly is.

Like the recent 24 hour vote on Iraq, forcing Republicans in Congress to defend an unpopular President or his acolytes is the smart way for Democrats to go politically and its also the right thing to do for the country.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

24 hour debate

(#50543)

was merely the appetizer for refusing to allow votes on the GOP "soft criticism" amendments.

Today, Reid is forcing the GOP Senators to make a stark choice: Stand shoulder to shoulder with Bush; or not.

Hey, if the GOP filibuster prevented an up-r-down vote why should ANY of the GOP amendments get an up-r-down vote.

The proper balance between defense and welfare are the tectonic plates that lie beneath our political discourse.

Did the Republicans "filibuster"?

(#50542)

Cause, based on reading the news, I never quite figured that out. *cough!*

Well, the polls would indicate

(#50552)

that the public is ahead of the corporate news heads on this one, but I don't discount that the wingnut welfare recipients will make any impeachment a tough slog.

"Something I think most liberals don't understand is exactly how stupid many conservative leaders are." - Matt Yglesias

Hey, I Thought I Was The Only One That Wrote Letters Like This

(#50397)


...lol

Though I confess that I have not jiggled my gig in this fashion for a while.

Nicely done....even if people may not agree with your position on this, you've put yourself out there on the front lines.

No shy wall flower-ism for you!

***********

Before Conservatives have a hissy, it would be nice to see an equally passionate letter to Nancy arguing against an Impeachment of the Chimp.

Now those are some talking points I'd like to see.

Best Wishes, Traveller

Please refer to the previous comment with respect to the

(#50431)

Constitution.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

I'm pretty pissed *cough!*

(#50398)

no text

What you should be

(#50432)

is embarrassed. Who ever taught you history should be pissed.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

Hey, now. -nt-

(#50439)

.

It's impossible to debate if people simply hold beliefs that have no grounding in reality.

That's all he's got right now.

(#50440)

Sad cryptic comments on a blog.

Bitter, poorly punctuated, fruit.

cryptic, hardly

(#50443)

simply reflects the executive powers illustrated in the Constitution.

So given your response, the tally so far, is two history teaches who failed and should be pissed.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H

I still only count one...

(#50449)

...um...Timmy

Guard, protect and cherish your land, for there is no afterlife for a place that started out as Heaven.

apparently you need more fingers

(#50757)

to do that you have to unclench your fist.

““I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration!”” –H