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Wed

18

Jun

2008

Kucinich’s Articles of Impeachment: A Three-Part Guide
Wednesday, 18 June 2008 09:14
by Elizabeth de la Vega

It is entirely possible to be a reasonably well-informed citizen of the United States and not know that on June 9, 2008, Representative Dennis Kucinich (D. Ohio) took to the floor of the House of Representatives and spent over four hours reading thirty-five Articles of Impeachment against President George W. Bush.

Even worse, it is not merely possible, but likely, that the vast majority of people who have been more than willing to ignore or ridicule those charges have not read them. Or, if they have read them, they have found the allegations and citations so overwhelming they just switch off their minds. Perhaps surprisingly, I understand this phenomenon quite well. I spent many years attempting to present complex and disturbing information to people in the context of criminal indictments and cases. And the truth is that legal documents are confusing to everyone, including lawyers. Much as I hate to admit it, for example, I have never been able to plow through our family will, so for all I know, our very meager estate has been designated by my husband to be held in trust for the care and feeding of ferrets.

But the House Judiciary Committee does not, of course, have the luxury of being so cavalier. For the past seven years, we have watched as evidence of President Bush’s deceit, contempt of Congress and abuse of power has piled up like rank seaweed on a beach. We cannot, in this summer of 2008, simply step around it and pretend it’s not there. There is a constitutional process to follow and we must follow it. If the threat of terrorism is not a reason to disregard the constitution – and it is not – then surely neither is an election.

So I have decided to offer some help, a modest contribution in the one area I know best: the presentation of charges. It’s a Three-Part Guide to the Articles of Impeachment. There is nothing fancy here -- no sarcasm, no vitriol and no cynicism. Part I is a chart that itemizes the Articles of Impeachment with a subheading and a longer description. Part II is also a chart which itemizes U.S. and international laws that are implicated by the charges in the Articles of Impeachment. (Quite properly, not every impeachable offense is based on a specific legal violation.) In Part III, to come early next week, I will present an Opening Statement setting forth - just as a prosecutor would do before a trial -what the evidence would show with regard to these allegations.

Forward them around, if you would. At the very least – before we decide to ignore it --we should all clearly and unflinchingly apprehend the nature and scope of this executive misconduct and its consequent human misery and damage to our country.

Part I: http://www.pubrecord.org/docs/vega/kucinich-bush-articles-of-impeachment.pdf

Part II: Coming Sunday June 15, 2008

Part III: Coming next week

Elizabeth de la Vega is a former federal prosecutor with more than twenty years of experience. During her tenure, she was a member of the Organized Crime Strike Force and Chief of the San Jose Branch of the US Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California. Her pieces have appeared in Atlantic Free Press, The Nation, the Los Angeles Times and Salon. She writes regularly for Tomdispatch.
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Jerry said:

0
Thanks for posting this!
I hope everyone keeps writing these articles. I am in the U.S. I am a big fan of Kucinich, so I was ready and watching him read the articles live. It was awesome! It is very true that very few people here know about this. What's worse is that knowing is not enough. Everyone who knows about it needs to spread the word and everyone needs to start flooding Congress with calls demanding that they support impeachment. I've made my calls and sent letters and tried to get my friends to do it as well, but a handful of people is just not enough.
 
June 18, 2008
Votes: +0

KeyStone said:

0
Preamble
"But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security".
 
June 19, 2008
Votes: +0

Jsens3 said:

0
Why there will be no impeachment of Bush
Reasons why there will be no impeachment:

1. The public doesn't care about it. In many quarters the effort to impeach Bush is a joke.
2. The Democratic leadership doesn't want it because too many Democrats went along with everything Dennis K is complaining about. As an example, Congress has the power of the purse, yet the majority Democrats have continued funding of the "illegal" war from the day they were sworn in. There is no way people in power are going to so obviously shoot themselves in the foot.
3. The impeachment of Bill Clinton was a huge waste of money and a diversion from matters of importance. We don't need that kind of fol-de-rol again.
4. No heavyweights are pushing it. Anything Dennis K. comes up with is suspect because of its source. He is sometimes referred to as "Dennis the Menace." The politicians may agree with the substance of many of his proposals but there is no way they will take the heat and risk a defeat at the polls supporting them. (Never forget that the first goal of bureaucrats and politicians is keeping their job.)
5. I suspect that in spite of his low approval ratings, many Democrats are still terrified of George W. Bush. If not, they sure act that way.

Cheers.
 
June 20, 2008
Votes: +0

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