The issue is impeachment.
Meanwhile, down at the state and local level, Democratic Party committee after Democratic Party committee is voting out resolutions calling for impeachment. The latest Democratic Party organization to call for impeachment of both Bush and Cheney is the Massachusetts Democratic Party, which at its state convention on Saturday, May 19, voted out a strong measure calling on the state’s elected representatives in Washington to investigate Bush and Cheney for misleading the nation into war, for authorizing torture, and for warrantless wiretapping. The message concludes: "If the investigation supports the charges, vote to impeach both Bush and Cheney as provided in the Constitution."
Massachusetts Democrats thus join California's huge Democratic Party, which passed a similar resolution less than a month ago at its annual convention, in what was widely perceived as a slap at Pelosi, who represents a district in San Francisco.
To date, 14 state Democratic Parties have now called for impeachment.
Many of these resolutions have been the work of the Progressive Democrats of America organization. Others have been promoted by ad hoc groups.
The impeachment resolutions, which have also been passed by Democratic Parties in so-called "red" states like Nevada and North Carolina, are a clear sign that impeachment is the will of the party's rank and file.
Polls have consistently shown that the broader public also wants the president and vice president impeached.
In October 2006, Newsweek published a scientific poll disclosing that 51 percent of Americans favored impeachment, half of them as a top priority.
That poll, of course, was taken before Democrats had gained control of the House and Senate, and also before Bush, ignoring the anti-war message of voters in November, decided to increase the number of US troops in his misbegotten and calamitous war in Iraq.
Another more recent poll, taken by a right-wing organization called InsiderAdvantage/Majority Opinion, found that 39 percent of respondents favored impeachment of both President Bush and Vice President Cheney together. The percentage for impeachment would almost certainly have been significantly higher if impeaching the two men had been offered as separate options in the poll.
At this point, the Congressional leadership, including Pelosi and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), really need to start worrying that they may start looking ridiculous. Indeed, the Detroit City Council a few days ago passed a resolution calling on Congress to begin impeachment proceedings, and one of those voting for the resolution was Conyers’ own wife, herself a Detroit alderwoman!
Clearly the president has authorized an illegal spying campaign, and has already been declared to have committed a felony by a Detroit federal judge who tried the issue last summer. Clearly too, he has grossly abused his power by claiming to have “unitary executive power” as commander in chief in the war on terror, and that this power, nowhere mentioned in the Constitution, gives him the authority to ignore and invalidate laws duly passed by the Congress. Finally, he clearly misled the Congress about the war, and clearly authorized the practice of torture against American captives.