Democrats Take Cover from Impeachment

by SAM HUSSEINI

 

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales was widely criticized for not addressing a host of questions in his testimony last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

But the chair of that Committee — Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont — himself won’t address the issue of impeaching Bush and Cheney. I’ve asked him about it twice in the last month, and both times he has responded by talking about Gonzales. This even though Vermont — the state Leahy is sent to D.C. to represent — is the state leading the impeachment drive againt Bush and Cheney.

Last month, after nearly 40 cities and towns in Vermont voted for impeachment, I questioned Leahy as he walked out of the studios of CBS’s “Face the Nation”:

Question: Senator, townspeople all over your state of Vermont have recently voted for impeachment. Do you think that the facts and the constitution, not the politics, but the facts and the Constitution merit at least investigating Bush and Cheney for impeachment?

Senator Patrick Leahy: We have a great deal of investigation going on and you’ll see Kyle Sampson, the Assistant to the Attorney General appear before my committee under oath on Thursday this week and I’ve already go the authority for subpoenas for many others. There’s not going to be a lack of asking questions. Thank you. Video is here.

And again, this Sunday, I asked him about the Vermont State Senate voting overwhelmingly for a pro-impeachment resolution. And again, he sidestepped my repeated efforts to have him address the substance of the subject. See video here.

On Friday, Dave Lindorff noted:

In a joint statement issued in Washington, DC, Vermont’s Congressional delegation, Sen. Patrick Leahy, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Peter Welch, responded to the state senate resolution by saying that “before we talk about impeachment,” current investigations in the Congress need to be “allowed to run their course.”

Ignoring the fact that 39 towns in the state, including some it Vermont’s larger municipalities, have voted out impeachment resolutions, the three, all Democrats, go on to say, “In our view, the people of Vermont want us to focus our attention on such issues as ending the war in Iraq, protecting the needs of our veterans, raising the minimum wage, addressing the crisis of global warming and providing health care to all of our citizens.” … If ever there was a case of elected officials ignoring the clearly expressed will of their constituents, this is it.

This effort has been lead by activists in Vermont who actually still seem to believe in the Constitution. One of them, Ellen E. Tenney, wrote to Pelosi earlier this year when the Speaker said impeachment was “off the table”:

When everyone in the three branches of government took their oath of office, they swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States, therefore, you are honor bound, it is your duty, and the duty of every member of the House and Senate to investigate and try, anyone who breaks the laws of the land, including the president and vice president and anyone else involved. No one is above the law.

Tenney also noted that Senator Leahy said in his newsletter, “I have never seen a time when our Constitutional and fundamental rights, as Americans, were more threatened by our own government.”

If he believes that, then is Leahy not violating his oath of office by not advocating an impeachment investigation of Bush and Cheney?

SAM HUSSEINI is the founder of http://www.WashingtonStakeout.com his web page is http://husseini.org.

 

Sam Husseini is founder of the website VotePact.org

Like What You’ve Read? Support CounterPunch
August 31, 2015
Michael Hudson
Whitewashing the IMF’s Destructive Role in Greece
Conn Hallinan
Europe’s New Barbarians
Lawrence Ware
George Bush (Still) Doesn’t Care About Black People
Joseph Natoli
Plutocracy, Gentrification and Racial Violence
Franklin Spinney
One Presidential Debate You Won’t Hear: Why It is Time to Adopt a Sensible Grand Strategy
Dave Lindorff
What’s Wrong with Police in America
Louis Proyect
Jacobin and “The War on Syria”
Lawrence Wittner
Militarism Run Amok: How Russians and Americans are Preparing Their Children for War
Binoy Kampmark
Tales of Darkness: Europe’s Refugee Woes
Ralph Nader
Lo, the Poor Enlightened Billionaire!
Peter Koenig
Greece: a New Beginning? A New Hope?
Dean Baker
America Needs an “Idiot-Proof” Retirement System
Vijay Prashad
Why the Iran Deal is Essential
Tom Clifford
The Marco Polo Bridge Incident: a History That Continues to Resonate
Peter Belmont
The Salaita Affair: a Scandal That Never Should Have Happened
Weekend Edition
August 28-30, 2015
Randy Blazak
Donald Trump is the New Face of White Supremacy
Jeffrey St. Clair
Long Time Coming, Long Time Gone
Mike Whitney
Looting Made Easy: the $2 Trillion Buyback Binge
Alan Nasser
The Myth of the Middle Class: Have Most Americans Always Been Poor?
Rob Urie
Wall Street and the Cycle of Crises
Andrew Levine
Viva Trump?
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
Behind the Congressional Disagreements Over the Iran Nuclear Deal
Lawrence Ware – Marcus T. McCullough
I Won’t Say Amen: Three Black Christian Clichés That Must Go
Evan Jones
Zionism in Britain: a Neglected Chronicle
John Wight
Learning About the Migration Crisis From Ancient Rome
Andre Vltchek
Lebanon – What if it Fell?
Charles Pierson
How the US and the WTO Crushed India’s Subsidies for Solar Energy
Robert Fantina
Hillary Clinton, Palestine and the Long View
Ben Burgis
Gore Vidal Was Right: What Best of Enemies Leaves Out
Suzanne Gordon
How Vets May Suffer From McCain’s Latest Captivity
Robert Sandels - Nelson P. Valdés
The Cuban Adjustment Act: the Other Immigration Mess
Uri Avnery
The Molten Three: Israel’s Aborted Strike on Iran
John Stanton
Israel’s JINSA Earns Return on Investment: 190 Americans Admirals and Generals Oppose Iran Deal
Bill Yousman
The Fire This Time: Ta-Nehisi Coates’s “Between the World and Me”
Scott Parkin
Katrina Plus Ten: Climate Justice in Action
Michael Welton
The Conversable World: Finding a Compass in Post-9/11 Times
Brian Cloughley
Don’t be Black in America
Kent Paterson
In Search of the Great New Mexico Chile Pepper in a Post-NAFTA Era
Binoy Kampmark
Live Death on Air: The Killings at WDBJ
Gui Rochat
The Guise of American Democracy
Emma Scully
Vultures Over Puerto Rico: the Financial Implications of Dependency
Chuck Churchill
Is “White Skin Privilege” the Key to Understanding Racism?
Kathleen Wallace
The Id(iots) Emerge
Andrew Stewart
Zionist Hip-Hop: a Critical Look at Matisyahu
Gregg Shotwell
The Fate of the UAW: Study, Aim, Fire