Obama: “Impeachment is Not Acceptable”

Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) has joined the likes of Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Dick Durbin in rejecting calls for the impeachment of President George Bush.

In comments made to USA Today, Obama said he would not back such a move, although he has been distressed by the “loose ethical standards, the secrecy and incompetence” of a “variety of characters” in the administration.

“I think you reserve impeachment for grave, grave breeches, and intentional breeches of the president’s authority,” he said.

“I believe if we began impeachment proceedings we will be engulfed in more of the politics that has made Washington dysfunction,” he added. “We would once again, rather than attending to the people’s business, be engaged in a tit-for-tat, back-and-forth, non-stop circus.”

In his zeal to become the next president, Sen. Obama has decided it’s in the best interest of his campaign to ignore the criminality and the abuses of presidential power carried out by the current administration. How can Sen. Obama disregard the following?

1. Bush lied about the threat from Iraq to justify a war
2. Bush started an illegal wiretaping program of American citizens
3. Bush failed to help victims of Hurricane Katrina
4. Bush politicized the Department of Justice
5. Bush built foreign prisons where prisoners could be tortured out of view of Congress
6. Bush obstructed an investigation into the outing of a CIA undercover agent

If these crimes don’t meet Obama’s standard of “grave and intentional breeches of the president’s authority,” then perhaps the Illinois senator needs to revisit the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. President George Bush has systematically abused the powers of the presidency and by doing so, threatened the rule of law. Bush has committed numerous impeachable offenses and he should be removed from office.

From the Left was an early and enthusiastic supporter of Barack Obama’s bid to become the 44th president of the United States. But Obama’s willingness to ignore the abuses of presidential power carried out by George Bush in order to ‘get along’ and get elected, is reason to give pause and reconsider his judgment. There is no more serious abuse of presidential authority than lying to the Congress and the American people to get them to support a war. President George Bush must be held accountable.

So, it’s with great sadness than I am pulling my support for Sen. Barack Obama’s bid for president. Barack Obama is a smart, charismatic man, able to inspire followers and lift their hearts. But as ugly and as tortuous the impeachment process can be, as Americans, nothing is more important than protecting our Constitutional system and preserving our democracy. Even if Mr. Obama doesn’t think so.

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44 Responses to Obama: “Impeachment is Not Acceptable”

  1. DMason says:

    I’m speechless and I’m angry at Obama. He’s revealed himself to be just another member of of club of senate whores, afraid to make waves and stand up for the American people. You have to wonder what he was promised for not being tough on Poppy and Babs Bush’s kid? Oh well, another one bits the dust.

  2. TOM339 says:

    Obama will never be president now. I predict as this story gains traction, people will start to see him as just another spineless, Washington DC insider.

    Now, more than ever, Al Gore MUST enter the race.

  3. Sandy A. says:

    Christopher – you hit the nail on the head. It all comes down to judgment.

    Getting elected is more important to Obama than upholding the Constitution. What a shame. But more than anything, Obama is afraid to rock the boat and cause a ruckus and impeachment is the loudest and biggest ruckus there is in a democracy.

    I don’t think he’s necessarily a coward but, his handlers are only giving him so much rope. He’s not in charge.

  4. Brigadoon says:

    I’m sure Nancy “impeachment is off the table” Pelosi gave Obama a big kiss on the cheek and said, “Good for you, Barack! I’m proud of you!” Now he’s officially part of the do-nothing Congress, safe, predictable and such a spineless, centrist that you mistake him for a Republican.

  5. Harry says:

    I hate them all. What a bunch of losers.

  6. panasit says:

    For the first time in presidential history, some political analysts predict that the collective costs associated with getting elected will top the $1 billion dollar mark.

    Online donations aren’t enough to successfully get elected. Winning means corporate (READ: Wall Street support) and in the world of political science, Wall Street likes a horse race and a winner. But they don’t like a troublemaker. This is why Dennis Kucinich will never be president.

    Obama is smart. He recognizes this and he’s not about to raise the threat of impeaching President Bush over the myriad of reasons you listed in your items in a series (I agree with all of them, by the way) because he would risk angering the money boys on Wall Street and the big corporate donations would stop pouring in.

    Call Obama a whore or call him a smart strategist, but until the costs of running for president are born by the Federal government and corporate America is removed from the picture, it’s realistic to expect to see courage from the men and women who seek the highest office in the land.

  7. Brad says:

    To play devil’s advocate here, how could he possibly be impeached? The Democrats can’t wrangle enough votes to get the VP’s offices funding cut, by a bare majority, how on earth are they going to pull off impeachment? It’ll just backfire in their face.

    He absolutely should be impeached, but the Democrats simply don’t have the power to pull it off, like the Republicans did against Clinton.

  8. DMason says:

    Brad’s right. The Democrats are so fractured and conflicted that if the US Capitol were on fire and there was only one exist, they would disagree about whether they should use it to leave the chamber.

  9. Sandy A. says:

    I have to disagree.

    Obama never mentioned votes, he said Bush’s misdeeds didn’t meet the standard of abuse of presidential power. These are two very different things. I agree with Christopher’s assessment of Obama’s character or lack thereof.

  10. Lawrence says:

    GORE 2008!

  11. Christian... says:

    Let’s cut the crap. The 08 election is a set up.
    The republicans are running against a black man and a woman. Are you kidding?
    The front running republican is a dumb ass that is basing his campaign on that fact that he raised the prison population in NY state by 175%, blocked the raising of the minimum wage twice, lowered taxes by 45% for the top 2% of the State and was responsible the mass migration of 35% of the minorities that could afford it, OUT of the state. How much more obvious can you get?

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m a black man, and I would love it if Obama did win, but come on people. This just goes to show that the political system in this country is done with. We have a one party system that knows they must give the impression that we have a 2.5 party system, or it would break down. The election process has been up for sale since Bush’s first win, and you all know.

    Ok, I’m done. =o)

  12. Scott Rose says:

    The real problem could be that there aren’t enough voters clammoring for impeachment. There should be. Shame on the American people in their aggregate for not demanding impeachment of Bush AND Cheney, the war criminals.

    Then too, why didn’t you make specific mention of how Bush & Co. (war criminals not yet brought to justice) have illegally manipulated, and sought to legally manipulate, election results? This is among the most important of reasons for impeaching Bush AND Cheney. If the Republican machine is left in place, it will still be subverting democracy by manipulating election results in 2008.

  13. TomCat says:

    Great minds, Christopher. Our articles today on this subject are virtually interchangeable. :-)

  14. Pam says:

    Call Obama a whore or call him a smart strategist, but until the costs of running for president are born by the Federal government and corporate America is removed from the picture, it’s unrealistic to expect to see courage from the men and women who seek the highest office in the land.

    Sadly this is true.

    I have to wonder though, with Bu$h’s ever decreasing popularity, if it isn’t best to leave him in office, making an ass out of himself on a daily basis, pissing off more moderates than ever. He will undoubtedly back the Rethug candidate and that may be enough of a kiss of death to ensure he loses. He’s possibly the most hated president in American history and as such an albatross around the necks of the republican party.

    And impeachment is too mild. He belongs in prison.

  15. mirth says:

    Echoing Sandy A, this isn’t about a corrupt election system, this is about Obama’s lack of judgement and character. He is not qualified to be our president or vice president.

  16. bliss says:

    Think about it.

    The Dems have given Bush free range and just about everything he’s wanted.

    Tax cuts for the rich; his Iraq war; a veto for stem cell funding and best of all, a guarantee that no matter how badly he acts, no matter how he abuses his office, he won’t be impeached because DINO assholes like Barack Obama don’t have the spine to take him to the woodshed via impeachment.

    Obama won’t get another dime from me and he certainly won’t get my vote.

  17. Bennie says:

    Barack is one scared brother.
    I grew up in Cleveland in public housing and back in the day, you knew to mind your own and look the other way when you saw bad things going on like drug dealing. You didn’t want to wind up under a group of 6 or 8 thugs with baseball bats.
    Someone got to Barack and told him that Bush gets a pass until Jan. 2009.

  18. Constitution Lover says:

    This is exactly why I’m voting for Ron Paul. Regardless of what side of the issues we fall on, he supports the Constitution unabashedly and unashamedly. I’d rather have a president that upholds the ideals this country was founded on…the documents this country was founded on, than cater to me and my immediate needs and desires.

  19. mbmdl says:

    So is Obama saying if by some miracle the House under Nancy Pelosi ordered the Articles of Impeachment and the motion passed and was then referred to the Senate for a vote, he would vote against impeachment?

    Whoa! Whoa!

    I mean, it’s one thing to have a hypothetical discussion but it’s another thing entirely to rule out impeachment completely. Obama seems to have morphed into Joe Lieberman.

  20. bliss says:

    Constitution Lover,

    Ron Paul is rabidly antigay. He has serious issues with this country’s LGBT community and this alone makes him unfit to be president.

  21. Rachel says:

    GORE/EDWARDS 2008!

  22. Brad says:

    GORE/ANYONE 2008!

    And by the way, DMason, I asserted nothing of the sort. In terms of party unity, you can’t do any worse than the Republicans right now. As for impeachment, the numbers just aren’t there. Too many blue dogs, NO Republicans that would back it, and nowhere near the number needed to convict.

    And Sandy, you’re totally right. To say that he doesn’t deserve it is ridiculous.

  23. T. Mike Randall says:

    Barack Obama’s understanding of the what high crimes and misdemeanors means is obviously limited. I guess he didn’t devote much time to the topic in law school.

    According to Article II, Section 4 of the United States Constitution:

    “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

    The invasion of Iraq has been planned for many years by the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), an organization founded by a small group of right wing political ideologues and corporate elite dedicated to promoting American global leadership. The PNAC signatories hold the most powerful positions in the current administration and other highly influential political offices.

    The Downing Street Memo and other key documents unambiguously indicate that the policy of regime change in Iraq was planned as early as July 2002 and “the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.”

    Perhaps the most clear example of high crimes and misdemeanors committed by George W. Bush was the intentional shaping and bending of facts to rationalize and justify the invasion of Iraq. Presidents have been impeached for less serious criminality than starting a war based on lies. Bill Clinton comes to mind who was impeached for perjury.

    Obama says impeachment should be reserved for “grave, grave breeches, and intentional breeches of the president’s authority.” I defy Mr. Obama to provide an argument for a more compelling reason to impeach than Bush’s State of the Union Address when he said, “The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa” to build nuclear weapons after he had already been told by the CIA that the evidence was forged.

    We’re waiting for your reply, Sen. Obama.

  24. El Diablo says:

    Since Barack Obama has now become a cardcarrying BushBot, he should withdraw his name from the list of Democrats running for president. He doesn’t belong there.

    Sayonara Bushlicker.

  25. Adirondacky says:

    Way to go Barack. Americans are already fucked-up confused and 41% of them think Saddam was behind 9/11.

    Other than John Edwards, I can’t say I like anyone in the field of Democrats. This stupid comment from Obama erased him completely from consideration.

  26. DMason says:

    T. Mike, as usual, a great response and summation of impeachment, Bush and the timid Dems who won’t go there in an election year. Fear should never trump upholding the rule of law.

  27. James17930 says:

    Whatever Obama claims his reasons are for not wanting impeachment, overall he’s right. What good would it do now? 3, 4 years ago, of course; now — pointless.

    It would tie up the government for months, and then the election would come along and sweep the Republicans into the White House and control of Congress because Joe and Jane American will be so pissed at the Dems for putting them through more impeachment proceedings.

    Plus, you’d have to impeach Cheney too right (because what would be the point of just getting rid of Bush)? And then it just looks like a power grab by the Dems when Pelosi becomes Pres.

    So give Obama a break here. I still think he’s the strongest candidate the best poised to make some actual change in Washington.

  28. J.R. Davidson says:

    Maybe I have my head in the clouds but I’m still holding out hope for Gore. The drips and drabs and hints just keep my hopes alive. I suppose we will know before year’s end what “the Honorable One” plans to do. Until then, I have no plans to financially support any candidate.

  29. MohawkDem says:

    The terrible truth is, after living through so many failed presidents I have made peace with the notion that they’re made of flesh and blood and maybe we just plain expect too much from them.

    Presidents can’t walk on water, part the sea or cure disease. They’re prone to foibles and sometimes, they even manage to do something good for the people who voted for them.

    Overall, the field of Dems look a thousand times better than the field of GOPers. Yeah, I would have preferred Obama to stand taller but I have to take into account his lack of experience in national politics.

  30. Randy Arroyo says:

    Interesting discussion here, as usual. I can’t imagine what would motivate Sen. Obama to ditch the US Constitution and handover the powers enumerated to members of the Congress seeking to find a remedy to an overreaching Executive unless he’s solely fueled by his desire to win the presidency in 2008. All I can say is, after this disasterous interview I expect to see his approval numbers go down.

  31. Robert M. says:

    I’m not sure who the author of this article is, but to my way of seeing things, he’s hit a home run.

    Failure to impeach the bush/cheney/rove administration amounts to giving them a pass for everything they’ve done since capturing our executive branch of government by an un-Constitutional end-around run using the Supreme Court. There is no issue greater facing our country.

    Most people in this country are sheep. They follow along with which-ever way the wind’s blowing. And most politicians are basically the same: They will do the right thing when the People define and demand what that is; otherwise, they’ll merely continue doing what the lobbyists pay them to do.

    America needs a leader who is willing to stand up and declare to the bush administration, the Congress, the American press, and most importantly, to the American People, that what is going on in Washington is wrong and must be stopped. We, as a people, need to repudiate the actions of the bush administration, and that means impeachment.

    But impeachment won’t happen until the People say to Congress, throw the bums out, or we’re throwing you out in 2008.

  32. nytexan says:

    Very interesting statements coming from a Constitutional Law Professor.

    I think the bottom line is Obama doesn’t want to take time away from chasing money and votes to be bothered with doing the legal thing.

    I am so not tuned into this guy for President, maybe V.P.

  33. DCVET says:

    Great comments by all.

    As usual, T. Mike Randall said it for me and I can’t think of anything else to add.

  34. dad2059 says:

    I agree with panasit and Christian, ’08 Presidential Election brought to you by NWO banking and finance.

  35. mirth says:

    Constitution Lover:
    This is what you want for our President?

    http://www.ontheissues.org/Ron_Paul.htm

    Gore/Edwards sounds good to me.

  36. feminazi says:

    Constitution Lover,

    I find Ron Paul conservative in a Barry Goldwater way and that makes me uncomfortable. I think the conservative movement was hijacked by neocons and today is lost. But, no, no, no to Ron Paul. As far as Obama’s comments, I guess with 16 months until the election, he just doesn’t see the point in starting the impeachment fracas. What should’ve happened in Ms. Pelosi should’ve tried it early after the midterms. Now, it’s a lost cause.

  37. TomCat says:

    The one thing we need to consider is this. Angry as we are at Obama, and I am angry over this, if he gets the nomination, I shall support him, only because, given the current makeup of the Supreme Court, and given that the few remaining centrists could well retire during the next President’s administration, the stakes are to high to allow another neocon/theocon Republican to win.

  38. Sandy A. says:

    Gore/Clark 2008!

  39. Richie says:

    Barack Obama wants to live in the Big House and to accomplish this, he can’t offend the money boys who write the checks from corporate bank accounts.

  40. Christian... says:

    Honestly, what would be the point of impeaching him.
    What strategic plan would that fall under?
    Impeach Bush, introduce president Cheney, nothing changes.
    Impeach both of them, introduce President Pelosi, finish the demicratic power grab, piss off the nation and watch the the 08 election go to ALL republicans.

    I think impeachment would be a bad move.

  41. norm rogers says:

    obama thinks he will lose votes if he doesn’t join pelosi in opposing impeachment for bush and cheney. i got news for him. he has lost my vote and others for not standing up for our constitution.

  42. nytexan says:

    Obama better start thinking with his head and not with his campaign goals.

  43. BeansnRice says:

    C’mmon people! Barack is thinking with his campaign and his presidency in mind. It isn’t that he doesn’t believe that Bush is a problem but that we are a long way from impeeching him. Don’t forget the political blowback. If we impeach Bush it is almost certain that we will rally the Country against the Democrats. If we don’t we might win in November.

    Maybe if we had controlled the congress before 2004 we could have confronted the nation and the President with this but not every one will fall behind us because we are willing to be suddenly reactionary. Remember, the current political environment didn’t just spring up out of no where. wrong or not, many people will support the Republicans and certainly McCain simply out of pity. I know that is messed up but half this country is not as liberal as you or any of us would like. Not that I think protecting the constitution is a “liberal” thing but liberals are championing the impeachment and we will have our usual enemies. Just let the Republicans fall apart on their own and we can deal with a war crimes investigation later. not much later but later.

  44. Benjamin says:

    Unbelievable. Well the Obama-zealots will just ignore this and think it’s all hunky dorey that their hero thinks it’s not an impeachable offense to have started a war based on lies, where 4,000++ Americans have died.

    He’s raped our constitution with his wire tap and prisoner issues. The man can clearly be impeached and should.

    I’m suspicious when a politician doesn’t want to impeach another simply because I feel they are protecting themselves ‘down the road’ if they choose to do similar things.

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