With Approval of Congress at 9%, Impeachment Inches Its Way onto the Table

When the Democrats regained control of the House in 2006, the new Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, famously took the impeachment of George Bush “off the table.” This puzzled and disappointed millions of people who rightly wondered why a president could be impeached over a sex lie in 1999 but not over a lie just four years later that sent hundreds of thousands of innocent people to their deaths in Iraq while draining the U.S. Treasury of billions upon billions of dollars.
True, the fact that Bush’s lies cost the lives of 4,116 lives of US service men and women, injuries to over 30,000 of our troops, the deaths of over 1 million innocent Iraqi civilians, the destruction of Iraq, and a long term cost over $3 trillion may not rise to the level of a sex lie about a blowjob, but they still deserve at least a hearing.
In parliamentary proceedings, however, any item that can be taken off the table can be put back on it, if conditions change and the leadership wills it so. Yesterday, Speaker Pelosi signaled that an Article of Impeachment charging Bush with lying to Congress about his pretexts for invading Iraq might at least get a hearing in the House Judiciary Committee.

There’s no way to know what changes in conditions, if any, may have prompted her to rethink impeachment, but it may have something to do with a new Rasmussen poll released on Tuesday that found approval of Congress at 9 percent, which is essentially a statistical zero.

Pundits have long speculated that Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and the other leaders have been averse to impeaching Bush because the impeachment of Pres. Bill Clinton put the Republican-controlled Congress in such bad odor with the public.

Let’s assume that Pelosi and company are not so blind that they can’t see the difference in severity of Clinton’s misdemeanor and Bush’s high crimes — or that they’re such bad politicians that they can’t judge the difference in the voters’ view of Clinton, whose approval rating remained in the mid-60s throughout the ordeal, and its disregard for Bush, whose approval is in the low 30s. Nor can they be unaware of the corollary fact that disapproval of Bush’s misadventure in Iraq is in the upper 60s.

But the bottom line for Pelosi is, with approval of Congress at statistical zero, what has she got to lose? A good politician in that kind of trouble should not be averse to throwing some red meat out to the base.

Who can say if that’s what is happening but yesterday, the right-leaning Politico.com reported that Pelosi herself said that there might be hearings on impeachment:

“This is a Judiciary Committee matter, and I believe we will see some attention being paid to it by the Judiciary Committee,” Pelosi told reporters. “Not necessarily taking up the articles of impeachment because that would have to be approved on the floor, but to have some hearings on the subject.”

Pelosi added: “My expectation is that there will be some review of that in the committee.”

Late yesterday, Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio introduced a single Article of Impeachment before the House that charged Bush with the high crime of “deceiving Congress with fabricated threats of Iraq WMDs to fraudulently obtain support for an authorization of the use of military force against Iraq.”

The Article closes by stating that Bush “invaded Iraq and occupies it to this day, at the cost of 4,116 lives of US service men and women, injuries to over 30,000 of our troops, the deaths of over 1 million innocent Iraqi civilians, the destruction of Iraq, and a long term cost over $3 trillion.”

True, this does not rise to the level of a sex lie about a blowjob, but it at least deserves a hearing.

H/t: The BRAD BLOG

18 Comments

  • July 11, 2008 - 2:14 pm | Permalink

    You can push your congressional reps on this issue. Vote, and send it to your reps on Govit.

    Here’s the impeachment bill
    http://www.govit.com/H_RES_1258/Impeaching_George_W__Bush,_President_of_the_United_States,_o/

  • July 11, 2008 - 4:16 pm | Permalink

    Don’t waste your breath or the energy it takes to write and e-mail or dial a phone. They’re all whores and don’t care. They don’t represent you. They represent the interests that paid them money to run favors for them.

    Hang them all.

  • July 11, 2008 - 6:07 pm | Permalink

    In fact, there is a lot to lose by pursuing impeachment–not for Pelosi personally or the Democratic party, but for the country as a whole. Our political process already took a heavy hit in the international arena during the ridiculous Clinton impeachment process, and another one based on our behavior in Iraq. If we demonstrate a habit of devoting time and money to impeaching our Presidents rather than working toward real solutions toward real problems, our barely-existent credibility will take yet another blow.

  • boo
    July 11, 2008 - 7:27 pm | Permalink

    NOTHING would give the USA more credibility than impeaching Bush.

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  • tom
    July 11, 2008 - 9:39 pm | Permalink

    I completely disagree with Tiffany and couldn’t agree more with boo! Impeachment hearings are the OBLIGATION of the congress! Please read the Constitution and lets get back to those ideals!

  • Anthony Look
    July 11, 2008 - 9:42 pm | Permalink

    Impeachment proceedings should be the obvious action that should be taken for many infractions, the least of these being misdemeanors.
    It is shameful that this Democratic congress has not made it their primary concern.
    That 9% approval rating after the FISA vote, trust me it is lower than that now. I am going to devote monies and time to make sure Pelosi does not get re elected and my vote on Obama went out the window when he voted yes on FISA. Hillary haters, Obama supporters-screw you.

  • Bushfatigue
    July 12, 2008 - 1:05 am | Permalink

    Pelosi was briefed on the CIA’s “enhanced” (aka torture) interrogation techniques, and didn’t raise a word in protest. Impeachment is “off the table,” because it would expose the complicity of Pelosi and other leading Democrats in war crimes and torture.

  • linda
    July 12, 2008 - 5:32 am | Permalink

    Our government has turned into a joke. The constitution is just a piece of paper to use when it fits their agenda. Clean house and get rid of them all. Lets get back to government by the people and for the people Not for government for the politicians and and big companies. We are a fraction away from disaster.

  • christy
    July 12, 2008 - 5:58 am | Permalink

    we need a revolution on apathy.

  • Bill
    July 12, 2008 - 6:53 am | Permalink

    Perhaps Pelosi’s reluctance to impeach Bush has to do with Cheney becoming president…you know, out of the pan and into the fire. Of course there is probably a legitimate argument for impeaching both…they both lied to Congress and the American public about Iraq. However, I am sure her motives would be questioned if she tried to impeach both as she would be next in line for the presidency….

  • The BIG FIG NEWTON
    July 12, 2008 - 6:57 am | Permalink

    WE CAN MOVE CONGRESS IF ENOUGH PEOPLE GET BEHIND THIS ISSUE AND WE REACH CRITICAL MASS.

    CALL YOUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES AND PUT THE HEAT ON THEM BY DEMANDING THEY SUPPORT IMPEACHMENT OR YOU WILL VOTE THEM OUT.

    YES, IT’S TRUE THE CONGRESS IS MOSTLY BOUGHT AND PAID FOR, HOWEVER, VOTES ARE WHAT COUNTS ON ELECTION DAY, AND IT’S PEOPLE WHO VOTE, NOT CORPORATIONS.

    DON’T GIVE IN TO PESSIMISIM, WHICH IS TO DO. STAND FIRM AND FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT FOR JUSTICE. IF WE FIGHT FOR WHAT WE BELIEVE WE MAY WIN. IF WE GIVE UP WE HAVE LOST ALREADY.

  • July 12, 2008 - 10:14 am | Permalink

    The Constitution does not require impeachment to be a long, drawn-out process the way the Republicans did it in 1999. With “smoking gun” evidence, it can be accomplished in a couple of weeks.

    If the impeachment of Bush were to move forward, the impeachment of Cheney would probably be bundled in. If Bush and Cheney are impeached together and forced out, Pelosi herself would become president.

    If it were to be done in succession, with Bush first and then Cheney, Pres. Cheney would appoint a vice president, who would have to be approved by the Senate and who would serve as president after Pres. Cheney is forced out.

    Alternately, Cheney might resign when his impeachment becomes imminent, allowing Bush to replace him with an appointed vice president, who would then serve as president after Bush resigns or is forced out.

  • July 14, 2008 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    Impeachment is the best thing America could do to show the world we do not agree with this president’s hatred of everyone else in the world, including us, the Amercan people.

  • George
    July 14, 2008 - 12:55 pm | Permalink

    TELL ME WHY WE ARE GOING TO BE PUTTING A MEMBER OF CONGRESS IN THE WHITEHOUSE? WANT TO FIX IT – WE NEED A GROUND SWELL CAMPAIGN, SIMILAR TO THE PEROT PHENOM AND KICK ALL INCUMBANTS OUT IN PRIMARIES, REGARDLESS OF PARTY AFFILIATION, JUST ONE TIME AND CONGRESS WILL REALIZE WHO’S PAYING THEIR SALARIES AND WHO REALLY HAS CONTROL OVER WHAT GOES ON. THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO BE OUR REPRESENTATIVES AND NEED TO REALIZE WE REALLY DO HAVE THE POWER. BUT……………..

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  • Robert
    July 16, 2008 - 5:19 am | Permalink

    Wake Up. If congress impeach Bush for what is obviously a war started under false pretences and hence a criminal conspiracy. Then the US government under international law will be liable for all the damages resulting from that criminal activity initiated by a US government administration. Damages in the trillions of dollars, for every US citizen and Iraqi who suffered harm. Even foreign countries who relied upon the information will be able to seek reparations from the US government for costs incurred. So it is a lie and it is an abandonment of honour and justice but, the US congress will never allow trillions of dollars of damages just to lock up a criminal US administration. Fortunately, ‘er’, the US administration was so corrupt there is plenty of other stuff to impeach them on and still send them to prison along with a large number of their corporate cronies.

  • KARL MARX
    August 15, 2008 - 12:10 pm | Permalink

    YOU PEOPLE ARE ALL FUCKING NUTS. DO AMERICA A FAVOR AND READ THE FUCKING CONSTITUTION.

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