Posts Tagged ‘Pelosi’

Nancy Pelosi Hasn’t Been Paying Attention

August 1, 2008

The Progressive, July 28, 2008

By Matthew Rothschild

Nancy Pelosi

There she was on The View on Monday, and Joy Behar, a good progressive, actually asked her a decent question on why she wasn’t pursuing impeachment.

Pelosi’s response was unbelievable: “If somebody had a crime that the president had committed, that would be a different story.”

You’ve got to be kidding me!

For starters, Bush himself admitted that he wasn’t obeying the FISA law when he was spying on people without first getting a warrant from the FISA court as required explicitly in the statute.

Then there is the torture and kidnapping that he has countenanced. That violates U.S. statutes and treaties.

And what about the wholesale corrupting of the Justice Department, which pursued political prosecutions and illegally discriminated against prospective employees on the basis of their personal views?

Then there’s the outing of Valerie Plame, and the cover up of that outing.

And what greater crime can you commit than waging a war of aggression and lying a country into war?

The evidence on impeachment, as Dennis Kucinich has courageously and thoroughly demonstrated, is overwhelming. On Democracy Now, Kucinich responded to Pelosi’s claim.

And for a breakdown of the statutes, Constitutional articles, and treaties that Bush has violated, go to AfterDowningStreet.org, and in particular, to http://www.pubrecord.org/docs/vega/kucinich-bush-articles-of-impeachment-violations.pdf.

How much more does Nancy Pelosi need?

This is not a case of political tag or gotcha.

This is about the Constitution and the rule of law.

That Nancy Pelosi can fob it off so facilely just shows how derelict she is in her duties.

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The Impeachment Hearing: A Victory and a Challenge

July 31, 2008

By DAVE LINDORFF | Counterpunch, July 30, 2008

The dramatic hearing on presidential crimes and abuses of power held on Friday by the House Judiciary Committee was both a staged farce, and at the same time, a powerful demonstration of the power of a grassroots movement in defense of the Constitution. It was at once both testimony to the cowardice and self-inflicted impotence of Congress and of the Democratic Party that technically controls that body, and to the enormity of the damage that has been wrought to the nation’s democracy by two aspiring tyrants in the White House.

As Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), chairman of the committee, made clear more than once during the six-hour session, this was “not an impeachment hearing, however much many in the audience might wish it to be” He might well have added that he himself was not the fierce defender of the Constitution and of the authority of Congress that he once was before gaining control of the Judiciary Committee, however much his constituents, his wife, and Americans across the country might wish him to be.

At the same time, while the hearing was strictly limited to the most superficial airing of Bush administration crimes and misdemeanors, the fact that the session—technically an argument in defense of 26 articles of impeachment filed in the House over the past several months by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH)–was nonetheless a major victory for the impeachment movement. It happened because earlier in the month, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who has sworn since taking control of the House in November 2006, that impeachment would be “off the table” during the 110th Congress, called a hasty meeting with Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Rep. Conyers, and Rep. Kucinich, and called for such a limited hearing.

It was no coincidence that shortly before Pelosi’s backdown, peace activist and Gold Star mother Cindy Sheehan announced that her campaign had collected well over the 10,000 signatures necessary to qualify for listing on the ballot as an independent candidate for Congress against Pelosi in the Speaker’s home district in San Francisco. Sheehan has been an outspoken advocate of impeaching both Bush and Cheney. “Pelosi is trying to throw a bone to her constituents by allowing a hearing on impeachment,” said Sheehan, who came to Washington, DC to attend. “It’s just like her finally stating publicly that Bush’s presidency is a failure—something it has taken her two years to come to, but which we’ve been saying for years.”

So determined were Pelosi and Conyers to limit the scope and intensity of the hearing that they acceded to a call for Republicans on the Judiciary Committee to adhere to Thomas Jefferson’s Rules of the House, which prohibit any derogatory comments about the President, which was interpreted by Chairman Conyers as meaning no one, including witnesses or members of the committee, could suggest that Bush had lied or deceived anyone. Since a number of Rep. Kucinich’s proposed articles of impeachment specifically charge the president with lying to Congress and the American People, this made for some comic moments, with witness Bruce Fein, a former assistant attorney general under former President Ronald Reagan, to say he would reference his listing of crimes to the “resident” of the White House.

Continued . . .

Netroots Nation or Nation of Sheep: Nancy Pelosi and Al Gore Address the Netroots Nation Conference

July 20, 2008
by Ronnie Cummins

Saturday morning, July 19. Sitting here at the Netroots Nation conference in Austin, Texas with several thousand other online activists. Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Party Speaker of the House, the third most powerful politician in the United States, is up on the podium, doing her best to damp down the mounting criticism of the Democratic Party’s shameful collaboration in funding the war and aiding and abetting the Bush administration’s shredding of the Constitution. Before Pelosi speaks, an announcement is made from the podium that disruptions will not be tolerated–if any of us express our frustrations too passionately with Pelosi and the sell-out Democratic Party leadership we will be arrested.

The first question the Netroots moderator poses to Pelosi is about impeachment. This generates considerable applause and cheers from the crowd. Pelosi, notorious for proclaiming that “impeachment is off the table,” artfully dodges the question and evasively talks about censuring the Bush administration and getting tough on Karl Rove. This generates polite clapping from the front of the room, where all the tables have apparently been “reserved” for Pelosi fans. In contrast I can see groans, grimaces, and shaking of heads from many of us, the netroots rabble, sitting at the back of the hall.

I resist a strong urge to get up and leave. How long will the centrist bureaucrats of Netroots Nation and groups like MoveOn roll-over for lowest common denominator Democrats and Barack Obama? After an hour of rather boring rhetoric by Pelosi, Al Gore makes a surprise appearance on the stage, letting Nancy off the hook.

After a standing ovation, Gore reminds us that the polar icecaps are melting even faster than scientists had expected. The global climate crisis, he goes on, is about to turn into a climate catastrophe. Gore then points out that global warming is of course connected to the energy crisis, reliance on foreign oil, and the economic crisis, as well as the lack of political leadership in the country. Finally, to cheers from the crowd, Gore calls on the assembled netroots to educate the public and get behind his campaign to generate 100% of the nation’s electricity from renewable sources of energy within 10 years.

Pelosi once again joins Gore on the stage and rather unconvincingly tries to present herself and the Democratic majority in the Congress as “revolutionary” on energy matters. This is too much for a number of us in the audience, and finally a man yells out at the top of his lungs, “What about the goddamn impeachment resolution?” The security guards at side of the hall look nervously around, but no one makes a move to arrest the man.

After claiming that she is trying to be “bi-partisan” today, and dodging a question about whether or not she will get behind Gore’s campaign for 100% renewable electricity by 2018, Pelosi rather anti-climatically reminds us that nothing will change unless we “get out there and elect Obama and a Democratic majority in November…”

Whether or not you decide to vote for Democrat Barack Obama, Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney, or Independent Ralph Nader in November, please go to http://www.GrassrootsNetroots.org and join a growing radical populist army who believe we need an alternative to MoveOn and Democratic Party centrists. The doomsday clock is ticking. Let’s fight like hell to make sure that 2008 is not the year where we tried to change drivers, but still went over the cliff.

Ronnie Cummins is National Director of the Grassroots Netroots Alliance.

Congressional Panel To Review Kucinich’s Call to Impeach Bush

July 17, 2008

But the House committee won’t actually consider removing the president from office.

by Laurie Kellman

WASHINGTON – Rep. Dennis Kucinich’s single impeachment article will get a committee hearing – but not on removing President Bush from office.0716 01 1 2 3

The House on Tuesday voted 238-180 to send his article of impeachment – for Bush’s reasoning for taking the country to war in Iraq – to the Judiciary Committee, which buried Kucinich’s previous effort.

This time, the panel will open hearings. But House Democratic leaders emphatically said the proceedings will not be about Bush’s impeachment, a first step in the Constitution’s process of a removing a president from office.

Instead, the panel will conduct an election-year review – possibly televised – of anything Democrats consider to be Bush’s abuse of power. Kucinich, D-Ohio, is likely to testify. But so will several scholars and administration critics, Democrats said.

The hearing is a modest gesture by House Democratic leaders to members like Kucinich who insist that Bush’s reasons for going to war meet the standard for impeachment. Kucinich had said that if his impeachment article is tabled he would just propose another one.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has made clear since she ascended to that post that there would be no impeachment proceedings. But that didn’t stop Kucinich from introducing 35 articles of impeachment, spending four hours in June reading them on the House floor and demanding hearings. The House summarily dispatched them for burial to the Judiciary Committee.

Kucinich came back with a single article, which was read into the record Tuesday. As it did with the others, the House referred it to the panel, chaired by Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich.

But this time, Pelosi said with a conspicuous lack of enthusiasm, that it would see some committee action.

Democratic aides said the hearing could take place as soon as next week.

The impeachment resolution alleges that Bush misled the public into thinking that he had no choice but to wage war on Iraq and implied that Iraq had helped al-Qaida with the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Democratic aides have widely suggested those gauging the bill’s prospects look to a precedent: the impeachment articles against Vice President Dick Cheney, which were sent to Conyers’ committee in November. There’s no evidence they will be considered before the Bush administration leaves office in January.

Those were Kucinich’s, too. Republicans, seeing a chance to force Democrats into an embarrassing debate, voted to bring up the resolution. Democrats countered by pushing through a motion to scuttle the bill from the floor.

© 2008 The Associated Press


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