Phil Burk / After Downing Street – 2007-10-12 21:36:11
(October 10, 2007) — Pelosi continues to insist that “Impeachment is off the table”. But in an October 10th interview with Ed Schultz, she said “if anyone knows of impeachable offenses that can pass the Congress, then please let me know”. She then goes on to say that Bush has “taken us into a war under false pretense”, and “gone outside the law in terms of the collection of information”.
So she is obviously aware of the fact that Bush misled Congress and conducted illegal wiretaps in violation of the FISA law. But she is apparently unaware that these are impeachable offenses.
Let us look first at the issue of misleading us into war. This is clearly a “high crime” in the sense that only someone in high office could lead Congress into authorizing a war. The consequences of this war have been catastrophic, as we all know.
Is lying to Congress an impeachable offense? Let us consider the words of Founding Father and later Supreme Court Justice James Iredell at the North Carolina Constitutional Convention.
The topic was impeachable offenses:
“The President must certainly be punishable for giving false information to the Senate. He is to regulate all intercourse with foreign powers, and it is his duty to impart to the Senate every material intelligence he receives. If it should appear that he has not given them full information, but has concealed important intelligence which he ought to have communicated, and by that means induced them to enter into measures injurious to their country, and which they would not have consented to had the true state of things been disclosed to them,”
This perfectly describes how false information was provided to Congress by Bush and Cheney in order to convince them to approve the use of military force in Iraq.
Now let us consider the second crime, going “outside the law in terms of the collection of information”. Pelosi was undoubtedly referring to Bush’s admitted violation of the FISA law against warrantless wiretaps. Bush cannot argue that he simply needed to wiretap terror suspects because the FISA law allows him to do that at any time and then seek approval from the FISA court within 72 hours. There is concern that Bush was actually gathering information on American citizens who were not criminals or terror suspects.
This violates the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
It is interesting to note that the FISA laws were established in response to the illegal wiretaps conducted by Richard Nixon during the Watergate scandal. The Articles of Impeachment against Richard Nixon included charges of warrantless wiretaps against 17 people. Bush has reportedly conducted warrantless electronic surveillance of thousands, perhaps millions of people, using the technology of the NSA.
Speaker Pelosi has stated that Bush has commited these crimes. These crimes are clearly impeachable offenses. We, therefore, call upon Speaker to put impeachment back on the table and allow impeachment proceeding against George Bush and Richard Cheney to follow their due course.
More information on what constitutes an impeachable offense can be found here.
• “if anyone knows of impeachable offenses” 60 seconds from end.
• “taken us into a war under false pretense” 37 seconds from end.
• “gone outside the law in terms of the collection of information” 28 seconds from end.
During her interview with Ed Schultz, Nancy Pelosi reaffirmed her position that Impeachment was off the table. At one point, she said:
“I do not see the connection between torture and impeachment.”
“Impeachment isn’t about putting pressure on the White House.”
Several times in the interview she openly admitted that the George W. Bush was operating outside the law (ie., spying without a warrant) but she refused to acknowledge that the Constitution clearly provides a remedy for precisely this kind of law-breaking.
The Remedy is Article ll, Section 4. Call Pelosi’s Office and let her know that you have read the Constitution and you are tired of capitulation and cover up.
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