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Media Yawns

Impeachment Movement Gains National Momentum

by PETER PHILLIPS

If a national movement calling for the impeachment of the President is rapidly emerging and the corporate media are not covering it, is there really a national movement for the impeachment of the President?

Impeachment advocates are widely mobilizing in the U.S. Over 1,000 letters to the editors of major newspapers have been printed in the past six months asking for impeachment. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette letter writer George Matus says, "I am still enraged over unasked questions about exit polls, touch-screen voting, Iraq, the cost of the new Medicarewho formulated our energy policy, Jack Abramoff, the Downing Street Memos, and impeachment." David Anderson in McMinnville, Oregon pens to the Oregonian, "Where are the members of our congressional delegation now in demanding the current president’s actions be investigated to see if impeachment or censure are appropriate actions?" William Dwyer’s letter in the Charleston Gazette says, "Congress will never have the courage to start the impeachment process without a groundswell of outrage from the people."

City councils, boards of supervisors, and local and state level Democrat central committees have voted for impeachment. Arcata, California voted for impeachment on January 6. The City and County of San Francisco, voted Yes on February 28. The Sonoma County Democrat Central Committee (CA) voted for Impeachment on March 16. The townships of Newfane, Brookfield, Dummerston, Marlboro and Putney in Vermont all voted for impeachment the first week of March. The New Mexico State Democrat party convention rallied on March 18 for the "impeachment of George Bush and his lawful removal from office." The national Green Party called for impeachment on January 3. Op-ed writers at the St. Petersburg Times, Newsday, Yale Daily News, Barrons, Detroit Free Press, and the Boston Globe have called for impeachment. The Nation (1/30/06) and Harpers (3/06) magazines published cover articles calling for impeachment. Garrison Keillor, and Richard Dreyfuss both have come out for impeachment. As of March 16, thirty-two US House of Representatives have signed on as co-sponsors to House Resolution 635, which would create a Select Committee to look into the grounds for recommending President Bush’s impeachment.

Polls show that nearly a majority of Americans favor impeachment. In October of 2005, Public Affairs Research found that 50% of Americans said that President Bush should be impeached if he lied about the war in Iraq. A Zogby International poll from early November 2005 found that 53% of Americans say, "If President Bush did not tell the truth about his reasons for going to war with Iraq, Congress should consider holding him accountable through impeachment." A March 16, 2006 poll by American Research Group showed that 42% of Americans favored impeaching Bush.

Despite all this advocacy and sentiment for impeachment, corporate media have yet to cover this emerging mass movement. The Bangor Daily News simply reported on March 17 that former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark has set up the website Votetoimpeach.org and that other groups are using the internet to push impeachment. The Wall Street Journal, on March 16, editorialized about how it is just "the loony left" seeking impeachment, but perhaps some Democrats in Congress will join in feeding on the "bile of the censure/impeachment brigades."

The corporate media is ignoring the broadening call for impeachment – wishing perhaps it will just go away. Television news and talk shows have mentioned impeachment over 100 times in the past 30 days, mostly however in the context of Senator Russ Feingold’s censure bill and the lack of broad Democrat support for censure or impeachment. Nothing on television news gives the impression that millions of Americans are calling for the impeachment of Bush and his cohorts. 

The Bush Administration lied about Iraq, illegally spied on US citizens, and continues war crimes in the Middle East. Despite corporate media’s inability to hear the demands for impeachment, the groundswell of outrage continues to expand.

PETER PHILLIPS is a Professor of Sociology at Sonoma State University and Director of Project Censored a media research organization. He is co-editor with Dennis Loo from Cal Poly Pomona of the The Case for Impeachment of Bush and Cheney scheduled for release this summer by Seven Stories Press.