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The Republicans need to be defeated.  That much is clear, and we're essentially standing here talking about it all the time, and doing many things to see it happen.

But an impeachment?  It won't be a real victory for us, because it will be politicians taking down Bush, and not the public.  McCain IS running for Bush's third term, and he's the one we have to worry about.

Let's have the people kick the Republicans out of the White House, so there is no question whatsoever that it is their housecleaning, and what they want.  Let's keep the Public's focus on one place:  McCain's potential to continue the Bush administration's worst abuses.  Let the past die with Bush's term in office.  Our task is to kill the Republican's chances to win the office for the next four years.

Originally posted to First Amendment Remedies on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:43 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  the only logical answer to your question: (9+ / 0-)

      "because we don't care if the Constitution gets trashed repeatedly and egregiously, and that numerous US laws and treaties have been broken, being under the misguided apprehension that electoral tactics are more important (and more strategically useful) than standing in the breach against the enemies of our founding documents."

      "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you can succeed." -Nancy Pelosi, 6/29/07.

      by nailbender on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:55:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The logical answer to that is: (0+ / 0-)

        I care greatly about the constitution getting trashed, but I think the better long term solution is to put a Democrat in the White House.

        Do we want to waste political capital on kicking Bush in the seat of his pants on the way out, after years of being ineffective, when we can get a good start on keeping the next constitutional violator in Chief out of office?  We don't need to avenge the American people on Bush, we need to make sure that his party as a whole suffers in this election.

        •  what you're missing is that Impeachment is (0+ / 0-)

          the remedy for Constitutional abridgement.

          To wit: Nixon was never impeached, and the Bushist legacy is nothing more than the logical extension of Nixon's travesties, made possible by the lack of precedent-setting trial in the Senate which would have put the Imperial Presidency into a crypt instead of a few years of suspended animation.  

          "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you can succeed." -Nancy Pelosi, 6/29/07.

          by nailbender on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 10:15:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The real remedy for constitutional abridgement (0+ / 0-)

            is congressional oversight and use of its power to check and balance the executive.  Impeachment, used in this fashion, is a political version of closing the barn door after the horses have gone out.

            I would rather devastate the Republican party right now by an all-around victory in the elections than devote more resources to an unlikely to win attempt to impeach him.  Democrats need to organize to kick the Republicans out, not to hurry one Republican out the door.  If McCain gets into offices because we take our eye off the ball politically, because we give them something to nurse their martyr complexes around, what good was punishing Bush going to do.  Punish the whole party, and we get to say that those who transgress against the constitution can cost their party dearly, instead of just themselves.

            •  there is no other way to use impeachment! (0+ / 0-)

              Impeachment must be pursuant to a crime or crimes, unless it is frivolous like Clinton's.  

              And it isn't closing the barn door after the horses have left, it is a fire truck putting down the flames that are engulfing the farmhouse with the family inside.

              "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you can succeed." -Nancy Pelosi, 6/29/07.

              by nailbender on Wed Jun 11, 2008 at 08:53:00 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  When you say there is no other way to use... (0+ / 0-)

                ...impeachment, keep in mind that on the next line you lay out that an impeachment can be political.  Indeed, the only two ever really done had strong political components.

                The reason why it's rarely used is that most of the time Congress finds a way to stand up to the president, to challenge his unconstitutional behavior short of that.  We haven't, for the most part.  The only two times it was ever used, it was used by those who were trying to kick out the president for their own partisan reasons.

                At this point, we're in the middle of an election.  Change will come to the White House.  The closer we get to January, the less and less necessity you can really attach to impeaching the guy.

                We need to focus our efforts on taking care of the election, not distract ourselves with an impeachment.  Bush's time is almost up.  It's McCain we have to be concerned with.  Let's not give him the chance to continue Bush's mistakes.

                •  You are plain and simply wrong on this change (0+ / 0-)

                  "Change": is it turning the White House from "Red" to "Blue"? Is it replacing an incumbent that was lily white with monarchist overtones with a brown alternative? That is the outside of change.

                  The same crop of advisors that were in place in the economic sphere, in the foreign policy sphere before Bush are set to re-enter government.

                    What is disappointing there is how small are the differences between them and Bush on the ground in various places. Clinton, too, attempted to "take out Saddam Hussein" as an annoyance to US interests in the Middle East. In 1998 when Scott Ritter and the weapons inspectors were removed the first time.

                   What impeachment would do would be a great educational tool regardless of "convictions" or not for our citizens. Little comfort for escaping the conviction in the Senate if the entirety of the disease and treason is laid out there which will HURT THE REPUBLICANS in November. Remember some of the 35 impeachment articles are how the Bush DOJ used lawbreaking to put Democrats in jail to win elections.

                   All of this can only help, not hurt Democrats overall in November. You think any other advertising for our side would be as effective as the real live process of cleansing the executive branch?

                  McCain: Unlike most Repub licans, he HAS dropped bombs on a people and country that did not attack America. It fits: Warmonger

                  by Pete Rock on Thu Jun 12, 2008 at 09:20:47 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

    •  Angry rebuttal (0+ / 0-)

      crawling down the recent diary list

      (-9.12,-7.33) I'm calling it now-- after the first Debate, MSM will run Nixon/Kennedy into the ground

      by Mikeguyver on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 10:07:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Impeachment is a band-aid we're handing... (0+ / 0-) a constitution we let get cut in half by a machine gun.  We would be employing it after having stood by and watched as Bush give it one tear after another, in fact at certain points after having helped tear it ourselves.

        The first question we would be faced with, after this, would be "How many of these measures did Democrats throw their support behind?"  We can't pretend that impeaching Bush would be the answer to that conundrum.  Meanwhile, whether he likes it or not, he's out of office in January 2009, and we don't have to do a damn thing for that to happen.

        Our party helped screw things up.  We were not a serious opposition party for so long.  We were just the whiny tag-alongs, who had to rationalize support of Republican policies, of Bush policies.  We cooperated with Bush on so many of these counts.

        The task has not merely been to remake Washington, but to remake our party, because it has been part of the problem.  Now we can indulge in this impeachment, which will shave a few months at best off of America's worst eight years of recent memory, but we will do so with political capital and attention torn away from the election, and torn away from the important task of remaking Washington and the party to prevent the next administration from being like the last one.

        The easiest way, is to clean their clocks in the election, to so thoroughly overturn the old order that Bush's unconstitutional behavior becomes politically radioactive.  We don't want to back their rank and file into a corner such that they are inspired to defend this crap.  We need them to realize that it helped destroy their party.

        The easiest way is to get a president elected who respects the constitution from the start, not another gung-ho macho steamroller of rights.

        But that easy way, which lets the past die its rightful death so we can move ahead, goes out the window when we start trying to impeach Bush.  We don't have the votes to pull it off.  It'd be largely symbolic, and it would distract Republicans from the fact that their candidate vetos beers.  That their candidate represents all they rightfully can't be enthusiastic about nowadays.  That he's a flip-flopper.

        McCain would likely become a self-righteous defender of the President, and spin rhetoric about how the Democrats aren't even waiting for the election to take over.  He'll appeal to their paranoia, and their latent fear of liberals.

        It would be a pointless partisan gesture at this point, and the fact is, we can win the victory we intend to win at the ballot box.  We have the opportunity to roll back the Republicans who supported all this mess, and make it utterly pointless to be a Republican collaborator on their terms.  That seems to me the better solution to the Bush problem.  Let him be the Republican's Kryptonite.

  •  that idea has merit (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ian S, daMule, rylly

    as long as the bastards are criminally prosecuted after leaving office.

    We don't have time for short-term thinking.

    by Compound F on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:46:39 PM PDT

  •  Yes... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nailbender, ek hornbeck, rylly, allie123

    By all means, let us have a process for replacing Bush in which there are no politicians.

    •  Yes... (9+ / 0-)

      because it's all about whether who wins is a Democrat or a Republican and not the Constitution.

      •  It really is. (0+ / 0-)

        Impeaching Bush won't bring back the people who have died in this war.  It won't un-nominate the people he's put on the Supreme Court.  It won't improve the economic lot of the American worker.

        Four years of John McCain just means that he'll find different ways to put in place all the disastrous Republican policies that are legal - like appointing extremists to the Supreme Court, keeping our troops in Iraq, and continuing the disastrous Bush economic policies.

        So at this point, yes, it is all about whether who wins is a Democrat or a Republican - because we can't impeach John McCain for all the disastrous and legal Republican policies.

        Help provide resources to Obama supporters! Contribute to the Obama Wiki!

        by mistersite on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 08:20:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's not as if Bush is there indefinitely. (0+ / 0-)

        He will leave office.  What happens once he does?  McCain may be worse on this than Bush.  We need to put a stake in the Republican's efforts to retain the White House, and get somebody who's more tractable on these issues.

        •  Bush doesn't have to be there indefinitely. (0+ / 0-)

          Nixon wasn't. Reagan wasn't. And neither were their staffers who invented the fantasy of the "unitary executive's inherent powers."

          But their expansions of executive power have so far been there indefinitely.

          You're fixated on the people, rather than the power they're exercising, even though the power is what it's all about.

          The Nixon doctrine -- that the president can do anything, and it's by definition legal if he orders it -- has been in place for 40 years, during which time exactly two Democrats have won the White House. One for one term, and one who got impeached. Republicans, meanwhile, have reelected three presidents, all of whom have been serial abusers of executive power.

          So far, the "let's ignore it and it'll go away" theory hasn't done a real hot job in "putting a stake in the Republican's efforts to retain the White House." They've taken 7 of the last 10 contests, made the one and only president to sign a lasting Middle East peace treaty a pariah, and impeached the only Democrat to win reelection since FDR.

          In light of that, how sure are you that your plan is sound?

          •  My theory isn't ignore it and it will go away. (0+ / 0-)

            My theory is that our primary concern is separating that party from executive power over the long term, and that concentrating our efforts on McCain will mean that he never gets the chance to wield power the way Bush did, to benefit from a continuation of Bush's fresh violations.  If we stick Obama's four or eight years in there, and he goes to town eroding Bush's unitary executive, then the next Republican to come around will have to contend with a changed atmosphere.

            We can try and avenge the last eight years on Bush, or we can work at both the congressional and executive levels in this election to make sure that what Bush has done becomes well known as a cautionary tale against constitutional excesses.

            Our efforts are best employed in an undiluted tearing of power from the hands of the Republicans.  That shouldn't be our permanent order of business, but for this election, it will be critical to establishing a clean break.  an Obama landslide, with coat-tails to boot, would make Bush's style of government politically radioactive.

            Once we have the power, we can change the norms, restore that threshold of behavior.  Doing it after almost the entire Bush tenure is over is too little, too late.  Cutting it short in an undisputable electoral victory will do us much more good in bringing this sad era to a close and putting a stake through Bush's authoritarian style of government.

            Don't take Bush out with an impeachment, bury his party with a landslide that sweeps them to their doom.

  •  If we don't impeach (6+ / 0-)

    for torture, lying us into war, illegal wiretapping etc... then what does it mean to be a democrat?

  •  It means we send them in leg irons (5+ / 0-)

    to the World Court at the Hague for International War Crimes against Humaninty.  Bush, Cheney, Wolfie, any else you want on the chain gang.

    With our evidence.

    "My Momma always taught me to play by the rules, and if you don't that's called cheatin'." - Donna Brazile

    by jjmn on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:51:06 PM PDT

  •  In a properly functioning democracy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    That would work, but only if we could get it up to boot out all the spineless horks who failed to defend the constitution during their so-called service.

    In this world, we'll reward them as though they had performed their duties, and they know it.

    Maybe next cycle.

    "Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising."
    ~~ Mark Twain

    by Ddeele on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:53:33 PM PDT

  •  Sorry, but for me (10+ / 0-)

    the constitution and our rights stand far and above any political party or their ambitions. What did our elected representatives swear to protect during their oath of office - political "advantage" or the constitution?

    •  It would be largely symbolic at this point. (0+ / 0-)

      It won't deprive him of much time.  It won't cast any doubt on him not already cast, and it will be the political equivalent of shutting the barn doors after the horses have gotten out.

      Focusing on electing our candidate will put a better person in charge.  That's the shortet distance between those two points for me.

  •  victory? (10+ / 0-)

    It's not about victory.

    It's about the rule of law.  It's about holding people accountable for their actions. Republican or Democrat.

    Taking no action on impeaching these thugs because "we may not win" is subverting our system just as assuredly as they have.

    If we impeach these bastards and try them for war crimes then the next batch will have to consider the consequences.

    Not impeaching is condoning.

    Always question why anybody does things. -- Helen Thomas

    by daMule on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 07:57:48 PM PDT

    •  What good does it do to win an impeachment... (0+ / 0-)

      ...if we bring back the power of the party that allowed, even helped him to commit those offenses?  It's like stepping on the roach while the ants swarm over your dinner.

      I would much rather further the reality of constitutional government than get hung up on that option.  I would rather our congress critters be busy doing oversight, than everybody being caught up in an impeachment and trial.

      I would much rather we be pushing our political advantage so the Republicans hve less and less margin to back the party's leaders.

      If this were last year, it might have been better.  Not now.  Not when that could keep this crap going.  It's the leadership we have to remove.  Bush will remove himself.  We'll have to keep ourselves busy prying McCain's fingers from the presidency, busy kicking out the Bushies.

      Impeachment isn't a magic cure for all this. It's long past its prime to do maximum good.

  •  I still think (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that impeachment won't accomplish anything.  And before I'm rebuked for saying that, let me state I'm not putting party before honor or country.  I think it will hurt the country if we don't repudiate the Bush policies.  Impeaching him six months before the election will only energize the Right.  It will give them something to howl about.  Three years ago it may have been a victory for us, but now I think it will be a PR victory for the noise machine.  

  •  couldnt disagree more! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joliberal, bablhous, skrekk, allie123

    we will never get better leadership til we demand better leadership.

  •  Not a chance... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    daMule, A Man Called Gloom

    for the republicans to gain any PR thru whining about a entirely just impeachment.  They are just as guilty and if they whine loud enough, they'll make fools out of themselves.  
    Let them whine, makes it easier to identify the ones that really HAVE TO GO.  By November some can be replaced!

  •  Are we Americans or .. (0+ / 0-)

    Members of the Vigilance Committee?

    I do mind, the Dude minds. This will not stand, ya know, this aggression will not stand, man.

    by johnbrown on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 08:16:36 PM PDT

  •  Years ago (0+ / 0-)

    Impeachment should have been done years ago. Imagine how much less disaster there would have been if it was! Why bother now? Focus on getting Obama in (alive).

    I agree with your sentiment though. I actually think once Bush is out of office he could be more easily prosecuted. To square up with the world, it really needs to be done. How could the world community ever forgive us if we didn't hold him accountable for his heinous crimes?

    But it ain't gonna happen. who's gonna do it? Bush's Skull and Bones Brother John F-in Kerry? Don't hold your breath.

    It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something. Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by colek98 on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 08:59:17 PM PDT

    •  forgot to mention (0+ / 0-)

      Did they ever do that telecom retroactive immunity? Maybe they ought to try a more comprehensive retroactive immunity...

      It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something. Franklin D. Roosevelt

      by colek98 on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 09:04:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  L O L (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "Why We Should Let Bush Remain Unimpeached "

    And leave Hitler in power, and Pol Pot....

  •  To agree with you and NOT IMPEACH (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NoMoreLies, daMule, CanyonWren

    is to enable, stand up for, pleasure, fluff, fellate bow down and kiss the feet of, all the creeps liars scum sucking dogs, murderers, torturors, pejurors, prevaricators, incestous lying sons of bitches and daughters of satan who have taken over our country and beaten us down morally and psychologically into submission.

      Now do you want to live in a country where those demons rule and keep turning us into even more hopeless wretches for another year, or five or twenty five more?

    if you do, join the cowards and gutless wonders like the team of donothings of this and other weasel and play safe diaries.

    DON'T IMPEACH.  Be the coward and give up one remedy short of revolution. Because that is all that will be left when this play safe and lose strategy fails as it will inevitably come November. Regardless who wins.  moving on and pretend it didn't happen. Or, don't impeach and have McCain win anyway. Then what?

    McCain: Unlike most Repub licans, he HAS dropped bombs on a people and country that did not attack America. It fits: Warmonger

    by Pete Rock on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 09:11:15 PM PDT

    •  I'd like to say that impeachment was all... (0+ / 0-)

      wonderful, warm, and fuzzy, but I remember the last impeachment hearing.  I remember how long it took to get things together.  I remember how much political capital it took, how much it drained the Republicans.

      I would rather have my people performing the political operations necessary to excise this cancer generally, than to go after one tumor at the expense of letting the other tumors go free or spread.

      Unless you've forgotten, we do have a remedy short of revolution.  It's called a presidential election.  We're in the middle of one.  We have a choice between somebody who believes in the rule of law, and somebody who believes in the rule of authority.  One man will end Bush's policies, another continue them.

      Call me names, if that's what gets you your kicks.  Personally, I'd rather us focus on changing personnel wholesale, than spend the rest of the year trying to can one lousy son of a bitch early.  I'd rather the political efforts of the Democratic Party be spent on rolling back the GOP's reach and influence.  We don't need a political event of this magnitude sucking all the political oxygen out of the room.

      •  Too much effort? (0+ / 0-)

        >I remember how much political capital it took, how much it drained the Republicans

        considering it was done for the narrowest partisan and venal motives, to kill off Clinton politically to make themselves stronger, the Republicans paid a price because the public realized what they had tried to do, and its absurd overreach.

        Our effort taking down  the cabal of scoundrels is not at all in the same league or an effort to get payback. Sex life of Cheney or others is irrelevant.

        It is to prevent the next occupant of the WH, regardless of Party from exercizing authoritarian and despotic powers that have been usurped and snatched from the rest of us and the other branches of government.

        It must be done regardless of the short term cost.
        Be it done now or done in November it must be done, and if it spare Obama a long dreary pursuit in the first year or so of his Presidency, so much the better. Get it done this year and clean out the baggage that will retard and foul  the efforts of the next Chief executive.

        McCain: Unlike most Repub licans, he HAS dropped bombs on a people and country that did not attack America. It fits: Warmonger

        by Pete Rock on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 11:17:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're not getting it. (0+ / 0-)

          Doesn't matter why.  What matters is that all the other business grinds to a halt, and we end up fighting a two front partisan war to deny Bush a few months in office, when we can deny his successor a trip to the White House.

          We can't fight a whole hearted election campaign and get this current authoritarian crop of Republicans out the door AND fight the political battle of impeaching a president who is also a lame duck.

          Additionally, I believe, with the Republicans the way they are in the Senate right now, we wouldn't win any vote.  I know, it's the thought that counts, but really, what do we stand to gain?  The FISA fight, the fight to remove Bush's unconstitutionally broad provisions and his immunity for those who helped him: that's worth more to us.  Making Bush fight every inch of the way for his authoritarian measures, that's worth more to us.  Impeaching him won't do us much good.  It'll just divide our efforts at a time we need them focused on one thing: winning the elections that will matter to how this government is shaped for the next generation.

          •  that's not a bad thing at all. (0+ / 0-)

            The less Bush can do or get done at this point,the better off we are.

            We really are lagging because we are forced to endure his "term" even if it is worse than useless. we don't have early elections as after a vote of no confidence as take place in parliamentary systems. we do have impeachment, but that is currently "off the table". So doing the least harm is what we are left with as a practical matter. Nothing however,
            is "practical" or inevitable about impeachment.

            Scott McClellan is to testify next week. The code of silence, the Bush criminal mob's "omerta" or code of silence taken as a protective defensive principle by Joshua  Bolten, Harriet Myers and Karl Rove in defiance of the Judiciary committees in the House and Senate may start to break down.

            McCain: Unlike most Repub licans, he HAS dropped bombs on a people and country that did not attack America. It fits: Warmonger

            by Pete Rock on Wed Jun 11, 2008 at 10:26:46 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Six months. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Pete Rock

              My guess, if we succeed in an impeachment is three months cut off his tenure.  November instead of January.

              By that point, he's a lame duck anyways!  We could just as easily make sure that most of his legislation dies in committee and stonewall the bastard for the rest of the time.  Show the spine we've neglected to show during the last two years and just wait the bastard out.

              As for the collapse of Omerta?  Don't count on it.  They are nice and securely in their box of contented oblivion to the rest of the world.

              We can keep our eye on the ball during the summer and fall better if we're not having to manage an impeachment at the same time.  Why do we feel the need to complicate this whole affair?  Let the collapse of the Republican party, and it's long sojourn in the wilderness serve as warning to those looking to follow in their radical footsteps.

              •  Everything reactionary is the same (0+ / 0-)

                if you don't hit it,it won't fall.

                As rotten and corrupt and internally crumbling this cabal is, they won't leave of their own accord. They have to be pushed, sometimes "rudely" and deliberately. Otherwise they will come up with some more atrocities between now and the nominal end of term.

                Leaving in disgrace,leaving without blanket pardons, without destroying millions of records leaving unable to have  escape stratagems and plans executed for hundreds of their accomplices and enablers, yes that is worth doing. That is a win for that 3 months that seems so inconsequential to you.

                We can't walk and chew gum at the same time? I guess we disagree. Let us see what McClellan speaks to, if he even gets thru this next round of hearings.

                McCain: Unlike most Repub licans, he HAS dropped bombs on a people and country that did not attack America. It fits: Warmonger

                by Pete Rock on Thu Jun 12, 2008 at 08:58:31 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  What am I really getting at here? (0+ / 0-)

    Concentration of effort and long term political focus, as opposed to immediate partisan reaction.

    I watched as Congress caved again and again on these matters, and besides my lack of trust that this Congress could pull it off, there's another factor:  The last impeachment was a huge affair.  It took months, and the time ultimately was wasted.

    If we were going to do this, I would have us go all the way, and do so if, and only if, we could get a conviction, because in a year like this, there's no point to doing it halfway.

    And for what?  We end up with less strength to turn the Republicans out of office and take over their seats, a move which would represent the finishing blow for many of Bush's enablers.

    Of course, then there's the matter of McCain.   If he wins, all this political theatre is for nothing.

    I want policy results.  We won't get those from Mccain.  The priority is easy enough.

  •  Do both (0+ / 0-)

    We can impeach and win the Presidency at the same time. If you can chew gum and walk at the same time, you can surely campaign for Obama and hold the Bush/Cheney cabal accountable at the same time.

    ALL of the Bush/Cheney cabal should be impeached, so they may never haunt us again.

    You're an asshole - my wife

    by A Man Called Gloom on Tue Jun 10, 2008 at 11:26:34 PM PDT

    •  No, we can't. (0+ / 0-)

      We divide our efforts, we divide our effectiveness.  These people should have been kicked out of office a long time ago, but we missed the chance to have it matter.  Let's focus on winning the elections we need to win to get the political power necessary to undo Bush's legacy.

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