By Charles Babington
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, May 12, 2006; Page A06
Seeking to choke off a Republican rallying cry, the House's top Democrat has told colleagues that the party will not seek to impeach President Bush even if it gains control of the House in November's elections, her office said last night.
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) told her caucus members during their weekly closed meeting Wednesday "that impeachment is off the table; she is not interested in pursuing it," spokesman Brendan Daly said.
Conyer's backup to her announcement was buried on p. 23 of the Post, but since he was the House leader on impeachment, he evidently had to make a public statement as part of the deal.
By John Conyers Jr.
Thursday, May 18, 2006; Washington Post Page A23
As Republicans have become increasingly nervous about whether they will be able to maintain control of the House in the midterm elections, they have resorted to the straw-man strategy of identifying a parade of horrors to come if Democrats gain the majority. Among these is the assertion that I, as the new chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, would immediately begin impeachment proceedings against President Bush.
I will not do that.
Bush thought he would keep control of at least the Senate. The usual Republican dirty tricks were played to maintain majorities in both Houses- keeping Democrats off the voter rolls, hacking the machines:
There was gross vote count manipulation and it had a great impact on the results of E2006, significantly decreasing the magnitude of what would have been, accurately tabulated, a landslide of epic proportions... When we compare the results of this national exit poll with the total vote count for all House races we find that once again, as in the 2004 Election ("E2004"), there is a very significant exit poll-vote count discrepancy. The exit poll indicates a Democratic victory margin nearly 4%, or 3 million votes, greater than the margin actually recorded by the vote counting machinery. This is far outside the margin of error of the poll and has less than a one in 10,000 likelihood of occurring as a matter of chance.
Despite the massive voter repudiation of the Bush administration, the Democrats are holding to their part of the bargain, Both Pelosi and Conyers have repeated that "impeachment is off the table". Here's a report of a recent call in show to Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA):
From Bob Wilkinson of Impeach Bush-Cheney- Willits: "For those of you that didn't hear the 7 to 8 pm call-in show tonight on KMUD with Mike Thompson, this is my take on the series of calls and his response: The majority of calls asked or told Thompson that impeachment should be on the table. Some callers came at it as an accountability issue, some as a way to restore our standing in this nation and the world. ... Thompson was getting frustrated at the numerous calls about impeachment and referred to it at one time as nothing more than beating the dead horse. He came out and said that all Democrats in Congress, including John Conyers, have taken impeachment off the table in order to move forward on a multitude of issues such as Iraq, immigration, and the environment.
What sort of deal did the Democrats make? What inducement was so powerful that it holds up even after the Democrats have won control of both houses of Congress, with a landslide victory?
Bush is in opposition to the Democratic agenda on the issues Mike Thompson mentioned, and will do his best to block progress on withdrawal from Iraq, control of global warming, repealing the Military Commissions Act and the Patriot Act, etc. The Democrats would accomplish their goals much more quickly once Bush and Cheney were impeached, discredited, out of office, and replaced by Democrats in the White House.
So, what's the deal? We know what Bush got out of it- at least partly- an escape from the impeachment and eviction from office that he richly deserves. Evidently, another piece is that he continues to have a free hand in Iraq, despite voter rejection of this occupation. What did the Democrats get?
The voters have placed their confidence in the Democratic party, to carry out the will of the people- get rid of Bush and Cheney, get out of Iraq, restore our freedoms. Have we been sold down the river by a secret deal with Bush? Don't we have a right to know?
In the name of the Prince of Peace,
Carol Wolman, MD
Cochair- Impeach Bush-Cheney- East Bay
Member- The Longhouse Coalition