Monday, April 24, 2006
Talk about Impeachment
For some time there has been much talk about Impeaching the G.W. Bush Administration. The prime goal would be too remove Bush and Cheney both from Office through legal or procedural means.
The pieces are beginning to come together:
1) Rep. Jon Conyers Jr. of Michigan legislation for Investigations on the Iraq War and Impeachment
2) Senator Russ Finegold of Wisconsin move for Censure
3) The Illinois State legislature is exploring the power of states to call for removing Mr. G.W. Bush
4) California State discusses Impeaching Bush and Cheney
April 22, 2006Bush Impeachment - The Illinois State Legislature is Preparing to Drop a Bombshell Utilizing a little known rule of the US House to bring Impeachment charges by Steven Leser The Illinois General Assembly is about to rock the nation. Members of state legislatures are normally not considered as having the ability to decide issues with a massive impact to the nation as a whole. Representative Karen A. Yarbrough of Illinois' 7th District is about to shatter that perception forever. Representative Yarbrough stumbled on a little known and never utlitized rule of the US House of Representatives, Section 603 of Jefferson's Manual of the Rules of the United States House of Representatives, which allows federal impeachment proceedings to be initiated by joint resolution of a state legislature. From there, Illinois House Joint Resolution 125 (hereafter to be referred to as HJR0125) was born. Detailing five specific charges against President Bush including one that is specified to be a felony, the complete text of HJR0125 is copied below at the end of this article. One of the interesting points is that one of the items, the one specified as a felony, that the NSA was directed by the President to spy on American citizens without warrant, is not in dispute. That fact should prove an interesting dilemma for a Republican controlled US House that clearly is not only loathe to initiate impeachment proceedings, but does not even want to thoroughly investigate any of the five items brought up by the Illinois Assembly as high crimes and/or misdemeanors. Should HJR0125 be passed by the Illinois General Assembly, the US House will be forced by House Rules to take up the issue of impeachment as a privileged bill, meaning it will take precedence over other House business.The Illinois General Assembly joins a growing chorus of voices calling for censure or impeachment of President Bush including Democratic state committees in Vermont, Wisconsin, New Mexico, Nevada and North Carolina as well as the residents themselves of seven towns in Vermont, seventy Vermont state legislators and Congressman John Conyers. The call for impeachment is starting to grow well beyond what could be considered a fringe movement. An ABC News/Washington Post Poll Conducted April 6-9 showed that 33% of Americans currently support Impeaching President Bush, coincidentally, only a similar amount supported impeaching Nixon at the start of the Watergate investigation. If and when Illinois HJR0125 hits the capitol and the individual charges are publicly investigated, that number is likely to grow rapidly. Combined with the very real likelihood that Rove is about to be indicted in the LeakGate investigation, and Bush is in real trouble beyond his plummeting poll numbers. His cronies in the Republican dominated congress will probably save him from the embarassment of an impeachment conviction, for now, but his Presidency will be all but finished.---------------------------------------------------------HJ0125 LRB094 20306 RLC 58347 r 1 HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION2 WHEREAS, Section 603 of Jefferson's Manual of the Rules of 3 the United States House of Representatives allows federal 4 impeachment proceedings to be initiated by joint resolution of 5 a state legislature; and 6 WHEREAS, President Bush has publicly admitted to ordering 7 the National Security Agency to violate provisions of the 1978 8 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, a felony, specifically 9 authorizing the Agency to spy on American citizens without 10 warrant; and 11 WHEREAS, Evidence suggests that President Bush authorized 12 violation of the Torture Convention of the Geneva Conventions, 13 a treaty regarded a supreme law by the United States 14 Constitution; and 15 WHEREAS, The Bush Administration has held American 16 citizens and citizens of other nations as prisoners of war 17 without charge or trial; and 18 WHEREAS, Evidence suggests that the Bush Administration 19 has manipulated intelligence for the purpose of initiating a 20 war against the sovereign nation of Iraq, resulting in the 21 deaths of large numbers of Iraqi civilians and causing the 22 United States to incur loss of life, diminished security and 23 billions of dollars in unnecessary expenses; and 24 WHEREAS, The Bush Administration leaked classified 25 national secrets to further a political agenda, exposing an 26 unknown number of covert U. S. intelligence agents to potential 27 harm and retribution while simultaneously refusing to 28 investigate the matter; and 29 WHEREAS, The Republican-controlled Congress has declined HJ0125 - 2 - LRB094 20306 RLC 58347 r 1 to fully investigate these charges to date; therefore, be it2 RESOLVED, BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE 3 NINETY-FOURTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, THE 4 SENATE CONCURRING HEREIN, that the General Assembly of the 5 State of Illinois has good cause to submit charges to the U. S. 6 House of Representatives under Section 603 that the President 7 of the United States has willfully violated his Oath of Office 8 to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United 9 States; and be it further 10 RESOLVED, That George W. Bush, if found guilty of the 11 charges contained herein, should be removed from office and 12 disqualified to hold any other office in the United States.
NOTE: Sec. 603. Inception of impeachment proceedings in the House.In the House there are various methods of setting an impeachment in motion: by charges made on the floor on the responsibility of a Member or Delegate (II, 1303; III, 2342, 2400, 2469; VI, 525, 526, 528, 535, 536); by charges preferred by a memorial, which is usually referred to a committee for examination (III, 2364, 2491, 2494, 2496, 2499, 2515; VI, 543); by a resolution dropped in the hopper by a Member and referred to a committee (Apr. 15, 1970, p. 11941; Oct. 23, 1973, p. 34873); by a message from the President (III, 2294, 2319; VI, 498); by charges transmitted from the legislature of a State (III, 2469) or territory (III, 2487) or from a grand jury (III, 2488); or from facts developed and reported by an investigating committee of the House (III, 2399, 2444). In the 93d Congress, the Vice President sought to initiate an investigation by the House of charges against him of possibly impeachable offenses. The Speaker and the House took no action on the request since the matter was pending in the courts and the offenses did not relate to activities during the Vice President's term of office (Sept. 25, 1973, p. 31368; III, 2510 (wherein the Committee on the Judiciary, to which the matter had been referred by privileged resolution, reported that the Vice President could not be impeached for acts or omissions committed before his term of office)). On the other hand, in 1826 the Vice President's request that the House investigate charges against his prior official conduct as Secretary of War was referred, on motion, to a select committee (III, 1736). On September 9, 1998, an independent counsel transmitted to the House under 28 U.S.C. 595© a communication containing evidence of alleged impeachable offenses by the President. The House adopted a privileged resolution reported by the Committee on Rules referring the communication to the Committee on the Judiciary, restricting Members' access to the communication, and restricting access to committee meetings and hearings on the communication (H. Res. 525, Sept. 11, 1998, p. 20020). Later, the House adopted a privileged resolution reported by the Committee on the Judiciary authorizing an impeachment inquiry by that committee (H. Res. 581, Oct. 8, 1998, p. 24679). The authority to appoint an independent counsel under 28 U.S.C. 573 expired on June 30, 1999.