It is our Constitutional duty—yours and mine
December 19, 2007
It is vital to proceed with impeachment. I don't care if Cheney and Bush are removed from office only one hour before the next President is inaugurated. And I don't care if the impeachment fails.
- This isn't about their removal;
the damage is already done—though it could certainly get worse.
- It isn't about punishing them.
- It isn't about retribution.
- It isn't even about holding them accountable.
- It is about holding ourselves accountable.
Whether you or I personally voted for Bush and Cheney or not, we as the citizens of this republic did put them in office—twice. The ultimate responsibility for their malfeasance is ours. That is the fundamental principle of democracy. So we must learn and face the truth. We must have the courage to act. We must exercise our constitutional responsibility and authority.
There is a resolution before the House Judiciary Committee calling for Vice President Cheney's impeachment. If that Democratically controlled committee holds comprehensive hearings, votes their individual consciences, and doesn't report the resolution to the full House, the matter is finished. The Committee will have done its duty. If the Democratically controlled House doesn't approve articles of impeachment, the matter is finished, but the House will have done its job. If two-thirds of the Senators don't vote to convict, the matter is finished, but the Senate will have done its job. This is due process.
It is our duty—yours and mine—to assure that the process is undertaken. We must keep pressure on our Representatives to hold hearings.
Many Americans believe Bush and Cheney have cynically disregarded the imperatives of the Constitution. If we leave that unchallenged, we no longer have a Constitution, and we are finished. The final death knell may take a few decades, or it may not, but it will be inevitable.
A summary of the current status
[There have been significant new events since this was written in Decmeber, including a resolution to impeach Bush, and "non-impeachment" hearings in July.]
Most of this has gotten virtually no media coverage:
- On April 24, Rep. Dennis Kucinich introduced a resolution to impeach Vice President Cheney, It was referred to the House Judiciary Committee. There have been 23 cosponsors so far.
- On November 6, he reintroduced the same resolution; it was also referred to Judiciary.
- No hearings have been scheduled.
- Three Judiciary Committee members, Robert Wexler (D-FL), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), submitted to major newspapers an op-ed piece supporting hearings. All the papers declined to print it.
- On December 14, Wexler mounted a website, with an online petition supporting impeachment hearings. At this writing, it already had over 100,000 signers. The op-ed piece is also posted on that site.