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Recently I posted a short list of issues that I am using in a handout brochure.  I received one very supportive comment and two others basically saying that "impeachment" was the only issue that matters; and by not supporting impeachment now, my candidacy had little meaning for these people.

I looked back at a previously posted comment, and since impeachment seems to have such importance to some at this time, I thought I would re-post my comment as a diary entry.

Impeachment is something that will either happen or not happen depending upon the makeup of the next Congress. It is difficult to consider impeaching a President who has the support of the Congress behind his actions. There are many Democrats who support the actions of this President. We cannot impeach an entire Congress, but we can vote them out. That is the task before us. That needs to be our focus; getting the American people behind a strong Progressive Democratic agenda and having them support it - leading the American people back into Washington.

I agree with the comment in a diary, "The midterms elections aren't about impeachment. They are about a new day and a new government, about a Democratic Congress that will vigorously fulfill its oversight duties--wherever they may lead."

There is too much focus by Democrats about impeachment.

Does Bush need to be impeached? - Probably. But should that be the focus of the Democrats at this time? No.

Would I consider impeachment as an option? Yes, but only if and when there is a majority in the Congress who opposes what the President is doing, and formally votes against his policies and practices; and then, if the President continues to pursue contra-legal, contra-Constitutional practices - I would be more than willing to vote for impeachment.

I see my initial job as a Congressman as being occupied with undoing the legislation and general harm this administration has done.

The impracticality of supporting impeachment now is that there are Republicans who wish they had not voted for George Bush.

 Demanding impeachment now, when it is impossible, only serves to alienate those whose support we need, the moderate Republicans who make up a large part of the Republican base.  

I believe that Republicans who voted for Bush and now wish they hadn't, would vote for Democratic nominees if they felt that there was cogent leadership in the Democratic Party. A strong demand to impeach now only rubs their mistake in their face. There is time for impeachment, but now is not the time to prioritize that issue, since it has insufficient support in House.

It is more than the right wing talk show hosts that have created the image of a dysfunctional Democratic Party.

With the Democratic focus on impeachment, rather than on a platform with an executable agenda spelling out the how and when of implementing the platform, Republicans may just perceive the Democrats merely as spoilers and revengeful; true or not - it is about perception.

The constant mantra of disrespectful, Bush bashing jokes tend to reinforce that perception of a spiteful, immature Democratic Party.

There was an overwhelming majority of Congressional Democrats who voted for the Patriot Act, and a good number who supported the War Powers Resolution. There is blame enough on many issues to go around.

While that, in no way, excuses the secrecy and skullduggery of this corrupt administration, it tends to put a sobering light on the perception that it is all Bush's fault.

If any president should be examined for impeachable offenses, it is George Bush.

Still, impeaching him would tie up the Congress for many months, and the premature call to impeach him now when it is more than unlikely, will scare away those who are already tired of a government locked in combat.

As a majority party, the Democrats will have to represent many who are not necessarily Democrats at heart. If compassion for others is part of the Democratic philosophy, it might be better to begin to display that virtue early on so that we can get the chance to lead.

Originally posted to Joel Goodman for Congress on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 08:38 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  so whether or not to press for impeachment is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RunawayRose, tlh lib

    a political rather than a constitutional issue for you?

    jotter's Lists of High Impact Diaries: daily and weekly archives (bring your own bendy straws)

    by sele on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 08:33:22 PM PDT

    •  While I believe as strongly with your sentiment (7+ / 0-)

      as the next constitutionally aware American, I don't think you can look at it in a total vacuum.  We do have to be practical about the way we go about governing.  However, I think impeachment should not be off the table just because it doesn't seem practical right now.

      This is a well written diary by Mr. Goodman and he makes some very good points.  I can see his side with the exception of the following:

      Still, impeaching him would tie up the Congress for many months, and the premature call to impeach him now when it is more than unlikely, will scare away those who are already tired of a government locked in combat

      Unless there is some serious polling or magic 8-ball that I do not know about, this is just a guess on the pundits part.  I will argue that right now, insisting that America is a Nation of laws and we will not let anyone. especially the POTUS, slide because in may be inconvenient, is a stance that the American people can get behind.  

      The fact that SO MANY people (remember them, the ones that are being represented) are calling for impeachment, even though most none of our leaders or media are talking not about it, shows the amount of support there is for such a measure.  Just imagine what the poll number would look like it if out progressive leaders would stop quibbling and start calling for investigations into the crimes committed by this administration NOW.  

      Lets show them we do stand for something.

      "For me a religious experience is walking into a really good New York Jewish deli." - my mom

      by ETinKC on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 08:50:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  one clarification that I would like to see (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ETinKC, tlh lib, Quicklund

        is who, exactly, is referenced with

        There is too much focus by Democrats about impeachment.

        Democrats already in office?  Democrats running for office?  Democrats who are active politically in their daily lives but not tied to elected offices themselves?  Run of the mill citizens who consider themselves Democrats but don't participate in political discourse other than showing up to vote?

        I'm pleased to see Mr. Goodman voluntarily confronting the issue.  

        jotter's Lists of High Impact Diaries: daily and weekly archives (bring your own bendy straws)

        by sele on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 09:00:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  response (0+ / 0-)

          I am basing my observation on what I have been reading on DailyKos, assorted web sites, what I see when I occasionally tune in to TV, and what I observed during the last major anti-war rally in Washington.

          I am tying my observation of widespread Bush bashing to the call for impeachment, as one seems to follow the other. While I truly understand the seriousness of the issues underlying the call for impeachment, which is being supported by the likes of the much respected Ramsey Clark, I believe that many utter the cry to impeach as easily as a street kid in New York utters an epithet..

          I guess I sense that it is a convenient and defeating pressure release; and that what needs to be done to accomplish it is being ignored. I may be wrong about that, but is my sense of things.

      •  Indeed. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RunawayRose, ignorant bystander

        This "more than likely" business is nothing more than a guess.

        On the other hand, we have some empirical evidence from Nevada, whose Democratic Party adopted an endorsement of impeachment in it's 2004 platform.

        Yes, 2004. Before the NSA revelations. Before Katrina. Before Dubai.

        Their results?

        Nevada's state legislature has a total of 63 seats: 42 in the House, and 21 in the Senate. The 2004 election results? A net gain of two seats for Democrats: +3 in the House, and -1 in the Senate. Not too bad.

        How about federal candidates?

        Well, it turns out that 2004 Democratic Congressional candidates outperformed (by percentage of votes cast) the 2002 Democratic candidates in every district in the state

        It seems to me that the issues at stake might deserve a little more consideration that gut instinct might yield.

        •  response (0+ / 0-)

          There is no argument here. It is more that I don’t agree with your conclusion; still I can’t with certainty state that you are wrong.

          The feeling about a premature call for impeachment is admittedly a gut feeling; but I have been out speaking to many people over the past five months, and I am judging some of what I am saying by the priorities I sense are held by the people who form my constituency – Republicans, Democrats and Independents.

          Not having seen vote breakdowns from Nevada, I don’t know that there is a direct correlation between impeachment having been in front of the public, and the gains made by Democrats. There is no way to know what the results would have been had impeachment not been an issue, or if it mattered at all. Also, it is somewhat different when the Majority Party in a state calls for impeachment, rather than individual candidates.

          The Virginia and Kentucky resolutions aimed at Adams’s A & S laws were a precursor to Thomas Jefferson’s eventual Presidential win; but Presidential elections were very different in those days.

          I have no problem in stating that it is my opinion that a strong stand on impeachment now would do more harm than good. If I am proven wrong, so be it. But for the moment, I will stand by my gut feelings about what we must prioritize.

          •  Thanks for coming back. (0+ / 0-)

            I would venture to say that there's every possibility that the constituency of Tennessee's first district is very different from the constituencies in other areas of the country. However, nine statewide Democratic party organizations have so far defied the "conventional wisdom" on this -- Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Wisconsin, North Carolina, New Mexico, Nevada, California and Hawaii -- and more are sure to come.

            Now, it's true that we don't know that there is a direct correlation between impeachment having been in front of the public and the gains made by Democrats. But that's precisely why I don't make that claim.

            Rather, the only claim on the table is the one you repeat: that there will be a direct correlation between impeachment being on the table and the losses Democrats are predicted to suffer.

            And to that point, Nevada's results are definitive. The claim holds no water.

            The best case that can be made for the conventional wisdom is that people paid no attention, and the Democratic gains were attributable to something else entirely. But that is equally destructive of the conclusion drawn from the conventional wisdom.

            The point here is that the assertion that bears the burden of proof is that impeachment hurts Democrats at the polls, and the only empirical evidence in existence is entirely contrary to that supposition.

            It's also worth pointing out that Democrats are not the majority party in Nevada. Democrats hold the lower house of the legislature, but not the Senate or the governorship. So that objection isn't directly on point, either.

            You are, of course, at liberty to state your opinion, just as we're at liberty to state facts contrary to it. You're equally at liberty to stand by your gut feelings about what you must prioritize. But the rest of us are doing fine, and increasing Democratic gains at the polls in the meantime, without that advice.

            How you want to make your case to Tennesseeans is up to you, of course. But realize that the facts on the ground outside your district are very different.

      •  response (0+ / 0-)

        Thanks for your comment.

        My conclusion, if I may call it that is not based on pollsters – it is really my personal opinion, based on what I have seen and heard in this particular district – the Tennessee 01.

        I do though believe I have a handle on what is going on in America. (Or I wouldn’t be running I guess.)

        I am not opposed to impeachment. What I am saying rather is that the task ahead of us Democrats right now is to put together an agenda that will solve the nation’s problems; that will allow people to see us as leaders; that will warrant confidence by people who are scared.

        There is a large segment of this population who are truly afraid of tomorrow. The Republicans have been scaring the pants off of the American public for five years now. It is time to show the American people some solutions.

        Focusing on impeachment now is adding more fuel to the fires of fear.

        The Republicans have no agenda.

        I suggest we use this site and others like it to create a workable agenda which most Americans can support.  It may not be easy, but it is a good use of time and energy.

        •  thank you, Mr. Goodman (0+ / 0-)

          I really appreciate your return to respond to so many of the comments here.  Your comments, as well as your diary, are thoughtful and well-spoken.  And that you don't claim to know Every Single Thing speaks well of you.

          I plunked through your site and I'm impressed with your positions so far.  I hope you'll continue to post here.  Both in your own diaries and in comments throughout other diaries.  

          jotter's Lists of High Impact Diaries: daily and weekly archives (bring your own bendy straws)

          by sele on Sat Jun 03, 2006 at 07:26:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  you're welcome. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sele

            Were there some way to have a real time open forum I would be more than willing to do that.  As you noted, I do not have all the answers. There are many who are more studied in particular areas than I would ever hope to be; but part of a job as a congressman is to listen  - much in the way that  Antigone suggested to her dad Oedipus a couple of thousand years ago, "Be wise by experience. But if that fails - be wise by good advice." [paraphrased]

            I have the help of some very astute individuals in evaluating the political scene - for the sake of understanding what is happening,  not for the sake of my own maneuvering. I also depend heavily upon a Retired US Army LT Colonel, Military Intelligence Officer in researching the issues. While I opposed the Viet Nam War, several associates and friends served there. We all, however, opposed the Invasion of Iraq. I have by the way ceased to use the term "War in Iraq,"  seeing it for wehat is was, an"Invasion."

            I do however try to follow my principles, my political philosophy, and my understanding of morality, as well as try to pay respect to the social mores that guide us.

            As a personal note......

            The main obstacle to my getting to Congress is not the Republicans, but the candidates running aginst me in the Democratic primary here in the Tennessee 01. With all due respect, one is a nice guy who really is not at all informed, and the other is a young "politician" on the way up with the help of family and connections.

            I am not from around here, and while I am slowly (possibly too slowly) developing a following among serious Democrats throughout trhe entire district, being from here means a lot to the "machine." The contested primary has cut off much potential funding - which won't be available until after the primary.

            Anyway, politics is politics, I guess. - And all I want to do is go to Washinbton for a few years, help save the country, and then get the heck out of there.

            I sometimes wonder how the founding fathers did it.

    •  response (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sele

      I believe you are reading "political" on a very basic level, in that it assumes that the end goal of politics is only achieving office.

      At the moment, I am (an assumption) like you outside of the Congress. I am not privy to any more information that you.

      I believe the President’s actions are unconstitutional. But what can I do with that information now except to try to elect someone who is willing to allow the issue to come to the floor of the house -  and hope that if he found the President’s actions unconstitutional after an examination - vote for trial in the Senate.

      But, what if the House continues to have a Republican Majority aided by Democrats that are unwilling to confront the President,  and impeachment is never brought to the floor of the house – where are we then?

      You and I could stand and yell about impeachment all day long – and there would be no vote to impeach.

      If I declare now that I will vote for impeachment as soon as I get to the Congress, what will I have accomplished? Would you want a juror who declares his verdict before he has seen the evidence? Most people don’t. They wouldn’t trust him. I wouldn’t.

      Yes. You and I believe we have seen enough evidence. But there are many who do not share the opinion that the president is a danger to our government – yet.   His low ratings only reflect the fact that most people still look at him as a nice guy who has made some bad decisions.

      If it is “politics” to try and bring a majority to the House that will allow the question of impeachment to reach the floor, then I am guilty of politics.

      But what more will I have accomplished if I scare and alienate those who could send me to Washington?  President Kennedy wanted us to go to the moon. It took almost ten years, billions of dollars and several lives to do it.   Would he have been as effective if he had said, “We will be on the moon next year.” Just because he wanted it to be that way?

      The question is not whether or not it is politics or constitutionality – it is intent and how best to accomplish what is needed.

      Reality is that even after the next election, there may not be enough Democrats willing to support impeachment.

      I don’t know that what I have said will satisfy you; but if I am to serve effectively, I must deal with the realities of the politics I have been handed. I wish we could have been on the Moon in a year. I wish we had a Congress that was willing to stand up for us. It didn’t and we don’t.

      I will be, though, one more voice demanding Constitutional Government and respect for the Constitution. But to have my voice heard in the Congress, I first need to be elected. That is just the system we have at the moment.

      It is difficult to consider impeaching a President who has the support of the Congress behind his actions. There are many Democrats who support the actions of this President. We cannot impeach an entire Congress, but we can vote them out.

  •  And why do we have to wait (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tlh lib

    for the next Congress?

    •  response (0+ / 0-)

      I guess I'm from New York, and long ago learned to understand that it was futile to wait for a cab if they weren't on the streets. It was sometimes more practical to just begin walking in the direction of where you wanted to go; and sometimes a cab would eventually come by once you began walking.  If no cab came, you still got home, you just had to walk instead of ride. But you got there. My goal was never the cab ride, but getting home.

      My goal is a free America - not impeaching Bush. I will not derail what  needs to be done to help America just to focus on impeaching Bush.

      There's no way impeachment will succeed without a majority in Congress to support it. We don't have that now. The job ahead is to lead America; putting together a platform that is implementable and helps this country.

      If Progressive Democrats get into power before Bush leaves, then impeachment is on the table. If not, we will have the task of undoing  the harm he and all of those who suppported him have done. I would be satisfied with that.

      I don't like Bush. But I have more dislike for the power elite that supports him. They are the enemies of American Liberty. They are the ones that put him in power.

      Bush is a distraction in many ways - as evil as I personally believe he is.

      There will still be much work to do even after Bush is gone.

      •  My concern is (0+ / 0-)

        the irrevocable harm to the nation if he remains in office.  The continued concentration of power in the executive branch, the erosion of rights, the information locked behind a wall of secrecy.  Perhaps another reactionary loaded onto the Supreme Court.

        With every day he remains in office, our power to reverse these losses erodes.  By the time he is removed, it may well be too late to undo the harm this administration has caused.

        The Bush administration is like a cancer of the body politic, and it is metastasizing rapidly. If surgery is delayed, the patient may die.

        •  response (0+ / 0-)

          I agree with everything you have said.

          History, though, has not ended.

          What is today will not be tomorrow.

          Even Nazi Germany ended. It would have been better had it never come into being. But it did and we all paid the price.

          That having been said, I am not asking you to forget about impeachment. I am asking you to focus on what you can do today that will at some point stop what is happening. If it is too late by next autumn, then so be it. We will then be faced with other options. But standing on the rooftop and screaming in the air will not help.

          And today you can begin working with people who are willing to go to Washington to secure our future liberty. Find a candidate in whom you believe. Help him or her get the word out about what they want to do.

          You must first help others to study the issues. You must help them understand what it is you believe should be saved. You must first help develop an informed electorate.

          Speak to everyone you know or meet about what is happening to our wonderful country.

          Ultimately knowledge leads to truth, and truth is power.

          I hope that I have not mis-spoken to you, but you seem very distressed and overwhelmed by what is happening.

          Many years ago I learned from my sensei to focus on the goal, not the distraction. What you cannot control is a distraction. You cannot control the Congress today. But you can work towards controlling it tomorrow.

          That is why I say that an unyielding demand for impeachment now is a distraction. The thought of impeachment is not a waste. It is a waste to focus on it.

  •  Conventional Wisdom - Where'd that start anyhow? (7+ / 0-)

    The impracticality of supporting impeachment now is that there are Republicans who wish they had not voted for George Bush.

    Demanding impeachment now, when it is impossible, only serves to alienate those whose support we need, the moderate Republicans who make up a large part of the Republican base.  

    I believe that Republicans who voted for Bush and now wish they hadn't, would vote for Democratic nominees if they felt that there was cogent leadership in the Democratic Party. A strong demand to impeach now only rubs their mistake in their face. There is time for impeachment, but now is not the time to prioritize that issue, since it has insufficient support in House.

    Yep, there is no doubt CW says, _"talking about impeachment will help the GOP in the November elections."  Now where did I first hear that?  Oh yes, from Ken Mehlman.

    And I notice Democratic politicians did not skip a beat in their haste to pick up that ball and run with it.  Of course the I-word will help the GOP in November.  Now Democrats don't have to run te risk of, you know, making a hard decision based on principle.  "Love to talk about it dear, can't, don't want to enrage GOP votes, eh wot?"

    But never once have I heard anyone explain why the phuque this assumption is true.  Seems just a tad to conveinient that both parties rapidly latched on to the same excuse to dodge teh biggest issue in teh campaign.

    Let's see, there's a lot of GOP voters who feel let down by Bush.  They rue their decision to vote fo Bush.  They wish they could take their vote back.  But when these same people are presented with a chance to "take back their vote" via impeachment, these same people will suddenly do a 180.  When presented with a chance to undo their mistake, they will suddenly decide to passionately defend their mistake once again.

    Is that how the logic goes?

    I am sorry to write such a snide comment.  I actually applaud you, personally, for bringing up the topic for candid discussion.  I honestly am.  And the above comment is exactly the candid point I have been dying to make to an actual candidate.

    I do not think the Democrats should make impeachment the central platform of the 2006 election.  But they should take the greatest pains possible to avoid the slightest appearance of running away from the issue.  There are any number of ways to answer questions of impeachment in a way that conflates support for Congressional oversight and letting investigations lead where they may.  And every candidate should be ready to look the people in the eye and state firmly, "I will not shirk this most serious duty, when and if such duty calls.".

    Well, thanks for hearing me out.  Best of luck.

    "A Republic, if you can keep it". Benjamin Franklin, 1787, regarding America's new Constitution. "You're on", George W. Bush, Jan 20, 2001.

    by Quicklund on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 09:02:10 PM PDT

  •  I think... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chicagoblueohio, Gorette

    every president since Calvin Coolidge deserved impeachment--then again, I'm just a bitter old man.

  •  This is an interesting point--- (0+ / 0-)

    The constant mantra of disrespectful, Bush bashing jokes tend to reinforce that perception of a spiteful, immature Democratic Party.

    Seems to me that the number of such jokes or amount of bashing has gone way down in recent weeks. I think that since the administration has fallen so low in regard even by its own base people are not feeling as frustrated. I feel that the bashing came about because for years we did not see how things were going to change and then all hell broke loose. It changed things.

    Not that we have changed our opinion of the Bu$hco, just that we are now looking ahead with better focus. And also, the enormity, number and depth of scandals and problems we are facing because of the R's has everyone's rapt attention.

    Thanks for writing about this here. I pretty much agree with the reasoning you give although I was out there talking about impeachment last September. I think it is best shelved for the moment, let people talk about it, that's fine, but we have to win elections! That's essential.

    ....But there's something bubbling (up) in America that will be reflected at the polls. --John Kerry 5/31/6

    by Gorette on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 09:38:22 PM PDT

  •  Please Join the conversation! (3+ / 0-)

    Or at least address the questions, that is the main request here.

    I agree that in many districts, and on the nationwide stage, pushing impeachment is not a good idea.

    My question is: From your quote

    if the President continues to pursue contra-legal, contra-Constitutional practices - I would be more than willing to vote for impeachment.

    it appears you are willing to keep the President if he promises not to do it again, how can you justify not voting for impeachment if Bush is proven to have committed a high crime.

    Investigations leading to a posible impeachment must be high on the legislatures agenda if our system of constitutional government is to be salvaged.

    Just tell the moderates that this issue must be settled before we give Hillary the powers George Bush is using.

    •  I am disappointed that this was a hit and run (0+ / 0-)

      diary.  There are some good posts here and this would have been a really good conversation to have.

      "For me a religious experience is walking into a really good New York Jewish deli." - my mom

      by ETinKC on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 10:30:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  the golden rule at its scariest (0+ / 0-)

      Just tell the moderates that this issue must be settled before we give Hillary the powers George Bush is using.

      That very thought must be giving more than a few Republicans heartburn by now.

    •  response (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sele, Tomtech

      What I am saying is that at this time there is no "proof" that the President broke the law vis-a- vis the lead-up to the Iraq invasion. You didn't believe the evidence. I didn’t believe the evidence. Most thinking people didn’t believe the evidence used to justify the invasion. But there has not been an investigation – because the Republican controlled Congress won’t permit it.

      Remember, there were many Democrats who should have known better and still supported the invasion. Patty Murray and Russ Feingold and Ted Kennedy and  others didn't follow the President into this man made hell that Iraq has become. So, is the President guilty of a crime when he has the support of the Congress? Probably not.

      Neither of us may like that answer, but that is the way it is.

      The same holds true for the patriot Act.

      As regards wiretapping, torture, rendition, unlawful detentions, and god only knows what else - we need an investigation. But an investigation will only be had with a progressive Democratic majority -besides the likes of Hillary Clinton.

      But here is what I am saying – if there is a Democratic majority and the President attempts to block constitutional legislation by standing behind his signing statements and claiming unconstitutional executive authority over the Congress, or refuses to answer questions posed to him by a Congressional inquiry or, there is an investigation and lies and treasonous acts are discovered, be they oil deals or lies about the invasion - then there is grounds for impeachment.

      That is the rule of law.

      I hope this helps.

      •  Thank you for the reply. (0+ / 0-)

        An open discussion is what we want here. When you post please have a staffer available for simple questions and be prepared to spend an hour or so here approximately an hour after posting any diaries.

        The fact that you are paying attention, and responding is what this community desires from candidates and officials.

  •  Public presses now, officials act later (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sele

    The public that favors impeachment should work to impress upon candidates that we do not believe in and will not accept presidential impunity.  We want impeachment as soon as it becomes a possible, starting with a Democratic Congress.  Voters should not insist that candidates promise to impeach because, as the diarist said, that might well scare away those who are not particularly partisan voters and who simply want their government to work again.

    On the other hand, we need to know from candidates that they believe in the rule of law, a rule which is vindicated when wrongdoing is punished.  No candidate need promise to impeach Bush in particular.  Rather, we need to hear that candidates believe in the rule of law, and that no one is above the law (implicity, even if he is the POTUS).  That answer, and no more, should satisfy everyone for the time being.

  •  kiss! bush is a menace and a danger. he broke the (0+ / 0-)

    law. impeach his sorry butt.

  •  Interesting. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RunawayRose

    I see my initial job as a Congressman as being occupied with undoing the legislation and general harm this administration has done.

    Unfortunately, George Bush sees his initial job as president as being occupied with undoing the legislation you'll later see as being your initial job.

    Here's the essential question: What is it that you see standing between George Bush and his ability to nullify everything you hope to pass in the 110th Congress?

    Tell me what the actual barrier is, and help us "trust you" when you tell us it's OK to shelve impeachment talk.

    Tell us why you think you'll be an effective Congressman. Not what you plan to pass, but why you think there's reason to believe those laws would be faithfully executed. Even in the face of 750 examples of George Bush's refusal to execute the legislation of a Republican Congress.

    •  response (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sele

      I see my initial job as a Congressman as being occupied with undoing the legislation and general harm this administration has done.
      Unfortunately, George Bush sees his initial job as president as being occupied with undoing the legislation you'll later see as being your initial job.  

      The only thing that will stop President Bush from using his signing statements or budget cuts to nullify legislation by making existing federal programs ineffective by withholding funding is a strong opposition party majority in either the House or Senate, preferably both. But a strong majority in the House would go a long way to curtail his actions.

      You refer to the “750 examples of George Bush's refusal to execute the legislation of a Republican Congress.”

      Thus far Mr. Bush has only “included” the signing statements with signed legislation. He is not the first president to have done that. He is though the first President to so blatantly use the signing statements as an attempt to greatly expand executive authority at the expense of the Congress. He has also included far more signing statements than any other President.

      While I do not like what he is doing in seemingly preparing the way for some catastrophic power grab at a later date through the use of signing statements, they are yet only signing statements. A large Progressive Democratic majority in the Congress – or even a majority that included non-Christian fundamentalist traditional Conservative Republicans would, I am sure be willing to examine the entire process of his use of the signing statements.

      I am sorry to say that nothing short of a change in the control of the Congress or an all-out revolution would deter Mr. Bush from nullifying whatever he wants to nullify. I seriously doubt that the Supreme Court would have the fortitude to intervene in this matter, but I would not hesitate to make the suggestion that a legal attack on his actions be brought before the court. It would certainly be interesting to see how the Supreme Court felt about being called “an activist court” were they to challenge his authority on a constitutional matter such as balance of power.
      Mr. Bush did not come into office with a large majority of the voting population behind him; in fact he may well have lost both elections, a fact that has not eluded me, and has made me wonder why there has not been more of a cry for a foolproof voting machine than a call for impeachment -
      But, that having been said; he has the control of the Congress.

      So, if we rule out revolution for the moment, and have little expectation from the Supreme Court, we are left with control of the Congress as the only way to stabilize the balance of power vis a vis the checks and balances between the branches of government.

      Therefore, in my opinion, anything that gets in the way from bringing as many Americans behind our banner as we aim for Washington is a major distraction and a potential seed for continued electoral defeat. I believe that a non-yielding demand for impeachment at this time is a major distraction and a major political liability.  Please understand I am not opposed to the possibility of impeachment once in power. But we are not in power and it is being portrayed as a tantrum by spoil sports. Whether or not there is truth to that portrayal is irrelevant.  It is as much a matter of perception as fact.
      Since impeachment is not do-able at this time, and is only do-able with a Congressional majority, why not expend the enrgy on what is absolutely necessary to attain that majority.
      We are losing our Liberty.

      The country is bleeding to death in Iraq. We are losing our children, our treasure, our self respect and the respect of the world.
      We have no federal “alternative” energy policy, and are being strangled by oil.
      We have no guaranteed national access to affordable health care.
      The national forests are under attack.  Our landscape is disappearing under the boot of urban sprawl and highway building.
      We have minimal growth in commuter rail transit. Highways are being widened where instead rail could be placed.
      Private ownership of homes is under attack from municipally aided land thieves.  
      We are losing factory jobs by the thousands every day.
      We are failing to control our borders and examine a sensible guest worker program.
      We have a serious problem with education.

      – and more and more and more...   My god – why focus on impeachment when it is an intelligent, well thought out implementable agenda we should be discussing. Impeachment will happen or it won’t. But it will take a majority of those in Congress who want it to bring it about.

      Personally, I was just as glad to see Nixon forced to resign as be impeached. I would feel no less unsatisfied just to see Mr. Bush out of the White House and the country get down to the business of running the country than to see him impeached. He is really only a puppet. I really don’t care about him. Were I in Congress and a call for impeachment were on the table, I would have problem in sending the order to the Senate, but I am not in Congress and it cannot be done at this time. I have no problem in using impeachment as a way to frame the discussion about the President’s unconstitutional acts, but where is the analogous discussion about impeaching the Congressmen who voted for the USA PATRIOT Act? It is not Mr. Bush alone who is guilty here. There are Democrats in this Congress that sicken me as much as the Republicans.

      You asked me tell you why I think I would make a good Congressman and why you should trust me. Truth is I’m a lousy salesman.  I can’t tell you anything of that sort. Number one I believe it is meaningless. I could BS you all day. But, at the end of the day I’m really just another guy. I’m lucky to have had loving honest parents who taught me right from wrong. I have a great dog and a loving lady who will soon be my wife. But that just makes me pretty lucky – not special.

      Anyway, my parents are dead and they are not running for office.  Neither is my dog or my girlfriend running for office, and I won’t trot them out in public for all to examine . So after all is said and done; the voters will be stuck with me, not whom I know.

      I am though someone who has a political philosophy and a point of view, and has no fear in expressing it, and hopefully expressing it well.

      I’m a pretty open person. Ask a specific question and you’ll probably get a specific answer, unless I believe it’s none of your business. I am spending a good deal of energy in developing an informative website. Please go to it and I will be glad to expand upon or clarify anything you read there.

      I believe this campaign needs to be about the issues and the political philosophy that candidates will bring to addressing those issues. If that makes me somewhat old fashioned, so be it.

      I hope this helps.

  •  I want a truly independent investigation (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RunawayRose, sele

    I want a truly independent investigation of the events and circumstances leading up to the invasion of Iraq.  I want an independent special prosecutor with subpoena powers to go where the evidence leads without fear or favor.  

    I am convinced that there was a concerted effort at the very highest levels of the Bush administration to push our country into war with Iraq.  I am convinced that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, and others engaged in what amounts to criminal fraud and conspiracy to make the case for war.  I am convinced  that if we ever find out the truth about those matters, the case for impeachment will be irrefutable.  

    I want a real investigation to determine the truth or falsehood of my suspicions.  I don't want a witch hunt.  I don't want a whitewash.  I want the truth.  The American people deserve no less.

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