Archive for category Impeachment

Tea-GOP Wanted Obama To Do Whatever to Save Bowe Bergdahl

Remember when the Tea-GOP and right-wingers everywhere complained bitterly that the Obama administration wasn’t doing enough to bring home America’s lone POW Bowe Bergdahl back from captivity? That was so last month!

For example, Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) and John McCain (R-AZ) have been making an issue of Bergdahl’s captivity for years. A May 22 press release from Ayotte’s office urged the Department of Defense to do all it can to find Bergdahl. Senator McCain suggested a prisoner exchange last February.

Rep. Rich Nugent (R-FL), introduced a resolution in the House calling on the United States to do everything possible not to leave any members of the armed forces behind.

In April, Senators Pat Toomey (R-PA) and Bob Casey (D-PA), along with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), introduced a resolution “to express the sense of the Senate that no member of the armed forces who is missing in action or captured should be left behind.”

Last year, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) said of Bergdahl, “The mission to bring our missing soldiers home is one that will never end. It’s important that we make every effort to bring this captured soldier home to his family.”

Are all these politicians now thanking President Obama for doing precisely what they demanded? Well, not really. Some in the Tea-GOP are talking about impeachment.

More info:

GOP Urged White House To ‘Do All It Can’ To Get Bowe Bergdahl

Conservatives Have Hilariously Forgotten How Badly They Wanted Bergdahl Home


The War Power, The Sergeant, the Senator: Treason or Heroism

The Sergeant who some years ago left his post in that unnecessary and unwinnable war in
Afghanistan is either a hero, a traitor, or just a terribly young man in the wrong war at the wrong time. He spent terrible years of torture and probably said things he didn’t really mean.

Some years ago in Vietnam, Senator McCain was shot down over Vietnam, another unconstitutional war, and equally unwinnable war, confessed repeatedly to things he later recanted, once safely in the United States, and is, quite rightly regarded, despite his confessions to American war crimes, a hero. The two cases are not quite completely on all fours, as we say in the law. But the similarity is sufficient to compare with each other and with the undergirding of law.

Presidents, from George Washington to Barack Obama, who are visited by war, either their own or, like Obama, inherited from another (in Obama’s case two other) fools who preceded them, have always had this power. While not yet president, and without this act may well not have become president, Ronald Reagan communicated with Iran, telling them, in effect, just to refuse to deal with Carter on releasing our citizens from the U. S. Embassy in Iran, and await his presidency. Their deal (which killed Jimmie Carter’s hope for a second term and by the way was treason, meriting a firing squad.)

The 30, 60, 90 day notification of Congress is also unconstitutional, but not for the reasons the Republicans and Democrats alike, trumpet. Saint Paul, as I recall, said “this trumpet has an uncertain sound.” And I know he said that some leaders have “zeal without knowledge.” This is Republican and Democratic leaders on steroids, just like my former wife.

The reason the War Powers Act is unconstitutional is not what is now said by either Republicans or Democrats, as I told Joe Biden when he was both Minority Senior member of the Foreign Relations Committee of the Senate and when he was chair. I testified before his committee a few times, and he called me at the law school sometimes to chat about this. The reason is simple. Due to both a few but very senior Democrats and almost all Republicans, Congress forced the Demo’s to give the president 30, 60, or 90 days to play with Congress’ army while he picked his nose. War has not been officially declared since FDR did it in WW2. George Bush (the first) and Colin Powell, in my opinion, got it right, constitutionally, by voting 50-50 in the Senate, and then the Dark Lord, Vice President Cheney, broke the tie and we went to war in Iraq the right way by law; and they had the smarts to stop when their limited mission was accomplished. And until this time, the President, as Commander in Chief, has no constitutional power to use the United States armed forces, save self-defense.

In the Framers’ mind that means only when the United States of America, not our allies, are attacked. For Utahns, the reason J. Reuben Clark, my hero and a great patriot, a rock-ribbed Republican who served under many Republican presidents, served variously as chief legal adviser to the Department of State (then, as an deputy Attorney General on loan from Justice to State,,,,,,now called Legal Adviser to the State Department; and Vice Secretary of State, and Ambassador to Mexico; and advised many presidents between world wars one and two, on all arms control treaties between those to dreadful wars) opposed NATO was because it delegated the war power to a generation not yet born and for the defense of people, and nations, not yet born. Neither the United Nations (Korean War) nor NATO (Ukraine?) can declare war for the United States of America. This is the statement of law, the War Clause, that makes this beyond debate. Remember, that it is also the sole right of Congress: not the President of the United States, nor NATO, nor the United Nations, that decides what constitutes International law, as well. So, both Constitutional Law and International Law, save an attack on the United States, inform us that Congress, not the president or these international bodies, who determines for war or peace.

So screw the people and the Congress and president now living. When the president, any president, has this army to use, that army will never return to Congress’ care. This is unconstitutional because it is an illegal attempt to delegate to the President a plenary power, given exclusively, textually, to the Congress. Like the power over interstate commerce (the road by which most civil rights legislation is constitutional), along with the equal protection and due process of law clauses of the 5th and 14th amendments. It’s as if Congress were to say to Obama, “Say, friend, we’re so damned tired of life in Washington, despite the cherry blossoms, we will do what the Supreme Court does, and reconvene when good weather returns. We’re going to go to Balboa Island, California, where it’s nice and sunny, in ocean or on the beach, and pick our nose and scratch our butts. And better yet, we have one in eight chances not to pick both with the same finger. Even though we’ve proven, time out of mind, that we in Congress cannot chew gum and pick our nose, simultaneously (a great blessing). So, pres., you now have the taxing and the spending power, and we’ll sweeten the loaf by throwing into the pot, since you do have to stick around in this shitty weather, and give you the power also to fund and provide for the Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Navy. And don’t sweat it about financing things by the provision in the Constitution that spending bills begin in the House. Since you already have the taxing and spending power, do all this in the White House. P.S. please instruct the Treasury Department to deliver our checks, our salaries, and all the REALLY big bucks from the armaments industry and all those other lobbyists. We really have earned this right by selling our souls to the devil. Have a good life.

I say that both Senator and Soldier are bona fide heroes. Ed Firmage xoxox


Rep. Chaffetz: Impeachment Is On The Table

When President Bush and VP Cheney publicly confessed to criminal acts, the Democrats let it pass. Probably they thought nobody would take impeachment seriously anymore after Republicans made a mockery of it during the Clinton administration. Then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi famously said impeachment was “off the table.”

Ah, but Republicans view impeachment differently. President Obama wasn’t even inaugurated before Republican politicians were calling for his impeachment. The right spawned a cottage industry of inventing Obama conspiracy theories. Some right-wingers are pretty sure Obama is the Anti-Christ described in the Book of Revelation.

So let’s not be surprised when Utah’s very own Rep. Jason Chaffetz joins in (emphasis added):

Rep. Jason Chaffetz says President Barack Obama’s handling of the government’s response to the Benghazi terrorist attack could be an impeachable offense and vows to continue digging at the “lies of highest magnitude” from the White House.

“It’s certainly a possibility,” the Utah Republican said Monday when asked about impeachment. “That’s not the goal but given the continued lies perpetrated by this administration, I don’t know where it’s going to go. … I’m not taking it off the table.

Never mind that terrorist attacks on U.S. diplomats happened 13 times during the Bush administration, and killed 98 people. Congressman Chaffetz is on a mission to destroy the Obama administration, and Hillary Clinton too, if he can. He recently participated in the NINTH congressional hearing on the Benghazi assault, which has also been investigated by the FBI and a State Department Accountability Review Board chaired by Ambassador Thomas Pickering and Admiral Mike Mullen.

The irony here is that President Obama is actually guilty of impeachable offenses, which the Republicans can’t talk about because it all comes back to Bush and Cheney.

UPDATE: Jason Chaffetz Doubles Down On Possible Obama Impeachment: ‘I’m Not A Patient Person’


Rocky Anderson vs Sean Hannity. Live Debate at University of Utah – Entire Show – Fox News

University of Utah, May 4, 2007. Two Hours. Moderated by Ken Verdoia.

Rocky laid out a bullet-proof prima-facie case for the impeachment of George W. Bush.

Hannity retreated into his hallmark pandering strategy refusing to address the facts in the case for impeachment of Bush. Not one word about Bush, the Constitution, illegal rendition, torture, wiretapping US citizens illegally, or the suspension of Habeas Corpus. Just personal attacks on Rocky as if labeling Rocky will somehow make the fact that Bush is impeachable go away.

Some still support Bush. They need to ask themselves:

Is your patriotism strong enough to hold a president you love accountable for his crimes and impeachable offenses? Or are you making an exception? Are you a full time American Patriot, or does it “depend?”

Part 1 of 3

Part 2 of 3

Part 3 of 3

Full Show Broadband (137mg) / Smaller Dial-up (37mg) version here
Play or download full high quality MP4 (525MG) here.

Thanks as always to Norm at OneGoodMove for providing this video.

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Is Impeachment On The Table?

Yes Victoria, you are idiotic– and you’re not alone.

Last night, MSNBC’s Ed Schultz asked a question that needs an answer.

Four years ago, in the midst of an avalanche of criticism of the Bush administration, Nancy Pelosi took impeachment off the table. I want to ask Mr. Boehner tonight: are you going to take impeachment off the table. or are we going to go down this road of divide, are we going to go down this road of investigations?

A month ago, Jonathan Chait of The New Republic made this prediction:

Hear me now and believe me later: If Republicans win and maintain control of the House of Representatives, they are going to impeach President Obama. They won’t do it right away. And they won’t succeed in removing Obama. (You need 67 Senate votes.) But if Obama wins a second term, the House will vote to impeach him before he leaves office.

An impeachable offense is whatever a majority of the House of Representatives considers it to be at any given moment in history.

From a Harris Poll of Republicans last March:

  • 67% believe President Obama is a socialist
  • 45% believe Obama “was not born in the United States”
  • 57% think Obama is a Muslim
  • 24% say “He may be the Antichrist”
  • 38% say that Obama is “doing many of the things that Hitler did”

Next year, Republicans will have their largest majority in the House of Representatives since 1928.

The Republican Party intends to hold major hearings probing the supposed “scientific fraud” behind global climate change.

The next chairmen of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the House Judiciary Committee, Reps. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Lamar Smith (R-TX), already have four investigations planned: (1) New Black Panther Party, (2) Joe Sestak’s Job Offer, (3) ACORN, and (4) the administration’s response to the BP Oil Spill.

UPDATE: House Speaker-in-waiting John Boehner claims voter ‘mandate’ to repeal healthcare bill


Rep. Rob Bishop: A Vote For Me Is A Vote For Gridlock

h/t David Dayen
Rep. Rob BishopRep. Rob Bishop, speaking to the USU College Republicans about what will happen after the election: “The most you can expect is two years of good old-fashioned gridlock.”

Nate Silver’s model predicts the GOP will pick up more than 50 additional House seats on November 2.

A few months ago, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) offered another preview of the coming Republican-controlled House of Representatives: “I think all we should do is issue subpoenas and have one hearing after another…”

Oh, and Republicans are pledging to de-fund the government. Impeachment proceedings against the President are pretty much a given.

In a recent interview, Senator Mitch McConnell candidly laid out the Republican vision: “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.” The 2012 Presidential campaign starts next week!

One thing you can say about Republicans. When they talk about shutting down the federal government and going for all-politics-all-the-time in Washington, they really mean it.

Rep. Bishop also revealed his plan for Social Security. “If you really want to be patriotic – once you’re retired, die.”

UPDATE: GOP says compromise not on the agenda if they retake the House


Dispatches From CPAC (2)

Glenn Beck did not disappoint tonight. He even brought his chalk board. He was not afraid to criticize Republicans by name, and named one: Teddy Roosevelt! Via HuffPo:

“I have not heard people in the Republican Party admit yet that they have a problem,” he said. “I haven’t seen the Come-To-Jesus moment from Republicans yet.”

All we’ve heard, the Fox News host complained, is “we need a big tent. We need a big tent. Can we get a bigger tent? How can we get a big tent? What is this the circus? America is not a clown show. America is not a circus.

…Said the guy who describes himself as a “rodeo clown.”

Ron Paul won the straw poll with 31 percent (!). Holly on the Hill reports: “Out of 2400 people who voted, almost 1/2 were students…”

Mike Lux on HuffPo:

The pro-torture crowd has taken over modern conservatism. People at the CPAC convention are firing themselves up with cries of “waterboard them” and cheering wildly as speakers advocated locking political prisoners away forever at Gitmo. Republicans are embracing a movement that trafficks in secessionism, birtherism, and making threats about armed revolt.

UPDATE: Glenn Beck Tells Republicans Exactly What They Want to Hear at CPAC, Media Call It Brave Criticism

Read the rest of this entry »


WorldNutDaily: Impeach Obama Because… er, We’ll Think of Something

Via Media Matters, the same people who overlooked former President Bush and VP Cheney’s televised public confessions of high crimes want to impeach President Obama for… what exactly?

impeach Obama bumper sticker

Of course, the first calls for Obama’s impeachment came from the right even before Inauguration Day. Then followed birtherism, which got attention in the media and support from a number of Republican elected officials, but was quickly dismissed as total insanity. Even Rep. Michele Bachmann now admits that President Obama is legally a citizen.

Now that birtherism is dead, WorldNutDaily has gone back to pushing impeachment, claiming “the groundswell of calls for the impeachment of Barack Hussein Obama is growing”:

But has Barack Obama committed an impeachable offense? What exactly constitutes an impeachable offense? Former President Gerald Ford, while serving in the House of Representatives, said an impeachable offense was “whatever a majority of the House of Representatives considers it to be at a given moment in history.”

Article I, Section 4 of the Constitution reads: “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

The key phrase here is “high crimes and misdemeanors,” a concept in English common law well-known to our Founding Fathers, but grossly misunderstood in this day and age. “High crimes and misdemeanors” essentially means bad behavior.

So far, so good. It’s true that a public official does not have to literally commit serious criminal offenses, as Bush and Cheney freely admitted doing, to deserve impeachment. But the WorldNut editorial writers can’t cite even one instance of “bad behavior” by President Obama.

As a practical matter, if impeachment was “off the table” for Bush and Cheney, then no subsequent administration has anything to worry about.

UPDATE: Floyd Brown, a prominent player in Republican circles, says “Obamaism” is an impeachable offense. Because he can’t come up with anything that fits the constitutional definition. You have to give him points for originality.


Will President Obama Fire Everyone on Beck’s List?

On MSNBC the other day, Chris Hayes of The Nation said that human sacrifice doesn’t work as a defense against right-wing witch hunts. President Bill Clinton tried it, as I recall, ditching “friends of Bill” one by one. The result: Democrats looked weak, and the Republicans set their sights on impeaching the President.Forget Glenn Beck

Last Saturday’s forced resignation of Anthony “Van” Jones from the Council on Environmental Quality was apparently only the beginning. Glenn Beck went after Van Jones at least partly for revenge, after the grassroots group Color of Change (that Jones co-founded four years ago) started a successful campaign against Beck’s on-air race-baiting.

Beck’s next victim is another progressive: Yosi Sergant, Director of Communications for the National Endowment for the Arts. Sergant is best known for his work with Shepard Fairey, the artist behind the iconic Obama “Hope” poster. Now he has been asked to resign because Glenn Beck said he was a Nazi.

It’s time for someone in the Obama administration to realize that Beck gets paid $18 million a year to run baseless smear campaigns against Democrats. That’s the business he is in. As long as he’s successful, he’s not going to stop. And Beck’s hit list is a long one.

Cass Sunstein, President Obama’s pick to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, was confirmed by the Senate today by a vote of 57-40. Sunstein’s nomination was filibustered by Republicans for eight months, and he’s rumored to be Beck’s next target.


Is Wrong Right, Unless You Have Lust In Your Heart?

It never ceaces to amaze me how most Christians don’t seem to be able to tell the moral difference between consensual sex affairs and real serious crimes involving everything including wanton murder of thousands for profit and power.

On Rachel Maddow’s show last night, she had a very brave man on, who has been all over the media lately, talking about his book, “The Family.” The first time I heard Jeff Sharlet was on The Diane Rehm show. It was one of the most unbelievable things I had ever heard. If you want a really quick summation of more egregious allegations that he makes in this appearance on the Maddow show, a good place to get it is through recent Bill Maher episode #162 which you can get from iTunes If you don’t have HBO, (go here and click on podcasts).

Now back to my original point. When Sharlet’s book first came out, a Christian magazine called “World” treated the book with disdain and even called Sharlet a “conspiracy theorist.” Now, after three Republican congressmen involved in “The Family”, (Sen. John Ensign, South Gov. Mark Sanford, and Rep. Chip Pickering), have been caught having sex, it was, somehow, now impossible not to have a damning story about this secret 60 year old organization which considers it’s members to be “The Chosen Ones“, who consider themselves to be completely above any law of God or man. Democrats are also listed in the “World” article.

Bill Clinton was accused of selling drugs, killing one of his friends and about a hundred of other very serious criminal offenses, but all we know for sure was that he lied about having sex.


A ‘Birther’ Scorecard

David Weigel of The Washington Independent has been keeping track of the progress of the “birther” conspiracy theory as the insanity spreads.

Birther protest

In case you haven’t heard, the “birthers” are a fascinating fringe movement in the Republican Party that claims President Obama is not a U.S. citizen, and therefore his election was illegitimate.

Some media personalities and politicians, including at least ten members of Congress, have been lining up to pander to the “birthers.” Lately, CNN’s Lou Dobbs has been encouraging them too, and recently implied that President Obama might even be in this country illegally.

Last night on “Hardball,” Chris Matthews spent most of a long interview unsuccessfully trying to get Rep. John Campbell (R-CA), a co-sponsor of Rep. Bill Posey’s “birther” bill, to admit that Barack Obama is a U.S. citizen.

Here’s a quick reference to some prominent “birthers” and “birther” supporters

  • Phil Berg, a former Pennsylvania deputy state attorney general and serial litigant
  • Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Rep. John Campbell (R-CA), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Rep. John Carter (R-TX), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Liz Cheney, former State Department official and daughter of Dick Cheney
  • Major Stefan Cook, an Army officer who volunteered for Afghanistan but reneged on his commitment, demanding proof of President Obama’s citizenship
  • Rep. John Culberson (R-TX), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Lou Dobbs, CNN anchor
  • Rep. Robert Goodlatte (R-VA), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Sean Hannity, Fox News Channel personality, who has aired claims that “the president is not, in fact, a legitimate citizen by birth” and asked a caller on his radio show if he had “ever seen” Obama’s birth certificate.
  • J.D. Hayworth, a former Arizona Republican congressman
  • Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), who recently told Politico that he thinks the birthers “have a point.”
  • Alan Keyes, former ambassador and frequent presidential candidate, who filed a law suit in California to force Obama to prove his citizenship
  • G. Gordon Liddy, radio talk show host and former Nixon Watergate operative convicted of conspiracy, burglary and illegal wiretapping
  • Rush Limbaugh, right-wing radio personality, who quipped: “[W]hat do Obama and God have in common? Neither has a birth certificate.”
  • Rev. James David Manning, a New York preacher
  • Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-TX), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Andy Martin, Chicago “Internet powerhouse” (his own words!) who started the unfounded rumor that Barack Obama was a secret Muslim and later pushed the unfounded rumor that he wasn’t born in America (Martin is running for Obama’s old U.S. Senate seat in 2010)
  • Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Chuck Norris, actor and right-wing activist who also claims that President Obama has not revealed his birth certificate
  • Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX), co-sponsor of Posey’s birther bill
  • Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL), sponsor of a bill that would change campaign law to demand proof of citizenship from presidential candidates
  • Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), who questioned President Obama’s citizenship at a town hall meeting
  • Carl Swensson, an activist from Georgia who was hustling to get people from all 50 states to form “citizen grand juries” to finally expose the conspiracy behind President Obama’s birth certificate
  • “Queen of the birthers” Orly Taitz, Obama conspiracy theorist and a dentist with a degree from an online law school

Perhaps I ought to point out that this crazy conspiracy theory, like all other crazy conspiracy theories, has been thoroughly debunked a long time ago.

UPDATE: Lou Dobbs: “[L]imp-minded, lily-livered lefties” attacked me because I had the “temerity to inquire as to where the birth certificate was.”

From “Hardball” Thursday night: Absurd Obama citizenship debate fills airwaves (11:19 video). Chris Matthews vs. an elderly and sometimes befuddled G. Gordon Liddy (I forgot that guy is really old now). Liddy tries lamely to keep to the “birther” talking points as Matthews heaps scorn.

CNN President Jon Klein to Lou Dobbs: “It seems this story is dead,” Klein wrote, “because anyone who still is not convinced doesn’t really have a legitimate beef.”

Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-HI) is going to introduce a resolution on the House floor today (July 27) to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Hawaii’s statehood. And of course, the resolution declares Hawaii to be the birthplace of our 44th President.

Mike Stark gets them on the record:

Check out this video: several Republican Congressman tell me they don’t believe Barack Obama is an American. Several dodge the question. Others offer weak-tea justifications for kinda-sorta believing Obama is a natural born citizen, Constitutionally fit to hold the office of President of the United States of America…

“Birther” self-proclaimed leader Orly Taitz is boasting on her blog that she’s made some high-profile “friends” on Facebook: Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, House Republican Whip Eric Cantor and GOP Reps. Mary Bono Mack and Cynthia Lummis.

UPDATE: One Utah celebrates glenn hoefer as our first in-house “birther.” At least until he states that President Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 4, 1961.


Torture Pro Judge Bybee Fails Backbone Test

Friends Say Judge Wasn’t Proud of Outcome


Via his roommate at BYU, this morning’s Washington Post reports that Torture Memo author Judge Jay Bybee is tortured by self-pity.

“Jay would be the sort of lawyer who would say, ‘Look, I’ll give you the legal advice, but it’s up to someone else to make the policy decision whether you implement it,’ ” said Randall Guynn, who roomed with Bybee at Brigham Young University and remains close.

In other words, “Its not my fault those evil men used my advice to justify torture.” Is Bybee then standing by his legal opinion?

Neither Guynn nor his brother, Steve, who also roomed with Bybee, recalled the judge distancing himself from the memos. But in the years since the first memo became public, Bybee left that sense with some.

Where is the personal responsibility?  Where is the moral compass?

Since moving to Utah years ago, I am frequently reminded that without religion there is no morality.

If morality – the sense of  right vs wrong — is derived exclusivily from religion, and Bybee’s religious training is straight from the bosum of The LDS Church…  Is it possible the training at BYU Law School is at odds with religious doctrine?  Or is Bybee a weak-kneed, ambitious, self-serving schmuck with a pretty face?

Bybee’s friends said he never sought the job at the Office of Legal Counsel. The reason he went back to Washington, Guynn said, was to interview with then-White House counsel Alberto R. Gonzales for a slot that would be opening on the 9th Circuit when a judge retired. The opening was not yet there, however, so Gonzales asked, “Would you be willing to take a position at the OLC first?” Guynn said.

I can only imagine what must be going on in Bybee’s head. “Dang. I got caught.”

Bybee should take this opportunity to become a ‘man.’ Otherwise, he’s going to face the fasted impeachment in history.  Three Senators have already called for his resignation.

What is he waiting for?

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