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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Rep. Wexler's op-ed on impeachment gets major media exposure - FINALLY
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Friday, December 28, 2007

Rep. Wexler's op-ed on impeachment gets major media exposure - FINALLY

the philadelphia inquirer...
The charges against Cheney are not personal. They go to the core of the actions of this administration, and deserve consideration in a way the Clinton scandal never did. The American people understand this, and a majority supports hearings, according to a Nov. 13 poll by the American Research Group. In fact, 70 percent of voters say the vice president has abused his powers, and 43 percent say he should be removed from office right now. The American people understand the magnitude of what has been done and what is at stake if we fail to act. It is time for Congress to catch up.

Some people argue that the Judiciary Committee cannot proceed with impeachment hearings because it would distract Congress from passing important legislative initiatives. We disagree. First, hearings need not tie up Congress for a year and shut down the nation. Second, hearings will not prevent Congress from completing its other business. These hearings involve the possible impeachment of the vice president - not of our commander in chief - and the resulting impact on the nation's business and attention would be significantly less than the Clinton presidential impeachment hearings. Also, even though President Bush has thwarted moderate Democratic policies that are supported by a vast majority of Americans - including children's health care, stem-cell research, and bringing our troops home from Iraq - the Democratic Congress has already managed to deliver a minimum-wage increase, an energy bill to address the climate crisis and bring us closer to energy independence, assistance for college tuition, and other legislative successes. We can continue to deliver on more of our agenda in the coming year while simultaneously fulfilling our constitutional duty by investigating and publicly revealing whether Cheney has committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

Holding hearings would put the evidence on the table, and the evidence - not politics - should determine the outcome. Even if the hearings do not lead to removal from office, putting these grievous abuses on the record is important for the sake of history. For an administration that has consistently skirted the Constitution and asserted that it is above the law, it is imperative for Congress to make clear that we do not accept this dangerous precedent. Our Founding Fathers provided Congress the power of impeachment for just this reason, and we must now at least consider using it.

yes, it's ANOTHER letter...
Dear Representative Wexler,

I have followed your efforts since you set up your website a few weeks ago and I could not be more supportive. My hat is off to you for your courage and dedication in forcefully stepping up to address the critical constitutional crisis faced by our nation. It is clear that you take your oath of office seriously. Would that more of your colleagues choose to follow your example.

I have grave concerns about the state of affairs in the U.S. For more than seven years, we have witnessed breathtaking lawlessness, unprecedented corruption, a complete disregard for international norms and obligations, illegal and unconstitutional domestic surveillance, bald-faced lies, verifiable war crimes, and a trampling of our precious founding principles carried out with impunity by our elected, appointed, and civil servant leaders. Those in positions of authority who attempt to derail this unheralded coup d'etat are ridiculed, attacked, marginalized, and threatened, while ever more sweeping government powers are enacted and crimes committed, often through stealth and under claims of executive privilege and national security.

This most serious national crisis, rather than being brought before the public by the fourth estate, and driving our citizens, our Congress, and our courts to swift action, has been greeted with deafening silence. Were it not for the alternative media, weblogs, and the internet, I would be in the same position as most of my fellow countrymen, perhaps experiencing a sense of things not being quite right, but nevertheless preoccupied with the rhythm of my daily life and more mundane concerns.

Let me be clear, Representative Wexler. Yes, I support starting impeachment hearings for Vice President Cheney. They are years overdue, and I totally fail to comprehend the stonewalling by Representative Conyers and Speaker Pelosi. But, even more than that, I support the removal of the current administration by the most expedient and legal means possible. As I write this, the mechanisms of unfettered executive power continue to be put in place, Congress continues to abdicate its oversight role - and, in effect, to nullify its constitutionally-mandated separate-but-equal, balance of powers authority - and the Bush administration still has another thirteen months in office, an unacceptably long time. Moreover, if those mechanisms are not rolled back and forcefully repudiated, they will remain in place when our next president in inaugurated on 20 January 2009, and that is even more unacceptable.

Please, Sir, I call on you to do whatever is in your power to remove this terrible curse from our country. There is no time to lose.

Best regards,

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