BREAKING: Five US Reps Support Cheney Impeachment
By Matthew Cardinale, News Editor, Atlanta Progressive News (June 06, 2007)
(APN) ATLANTA US Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY) has become the fifth total co-sponsor of US Rep. Dennis Kucinichs (D-OH) bill to impeach Vice President of the United States Dick Cheney, Atlanta Progressive News has learned. In addition to Kucinich, the additional three Members of Congress who have signed on to H. Res 333 are US Rep. Janice Schakowsky (D-IL), William Lacy Clay (D-MO), and Albert Wynn (D-MD).
"This Administration has continued to erode the trust of the American people and enough is simply enough," stated US Rep. Clarke in a press release issued first to Atlanta Progressive News.
"H.Res. 333 was introduced to the House of Representatives by Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio on April 24, 2007, and asserts that the vice president manipulated intelligence to make the case for going to war with Iraq, falsified a connection between Iraq and al-Qaeda, and has threatened aggression against Iran," US Rep. Clarke says.
"When the American people voted on November 7th, they asked for a change in direction by electing the Democratic party in the House and Senate. I have heard the loud cries of my constituents, and they want accountability. My support of HRes 333 reflects the voices of the residents of central Brooklyn."
Congresswoman Clarke replaced US Rep. Major Owens (D-NY), who retired at the end of the 109th Session. US Rep. Owens had been one of the early supporters of Conyers's bill, H Res 635, which would have created a Select Committee to look into the possible grounds for impeaching President Bush.
Congresswoman Clarke is her own woman and "does not follow the crowd," her spokesperson said, adding that constituents had regularly lobbied her to co-sponsor this bill.
"Vice President Dick Cheney is the architect of the Administration's deception about the war. Cheney persistently and deliberately deceived the Congress and the American people about the existence of Weapons of Mass Destruction and the alleged link between Saddam Hussein and the attack on September 11th. There should be a serious dialogue about the conduct of this Administration. Cheney should be held accountable for purposely misleading the American people. Despite the obvious lack of success on the ground, Vice President Cheney continued a barrage of propaganda claiming that we were winning the war and successfully rebuilding Iraq which is patently false. His statements and representations about the situation in Iraq amount to malfeasance for which he should be taken to task," said Wynn in a press release prepared for Atlanta Progressive News.
Impeachment activist Tracie Stern of Atlanta World Can't Wait said the new co-sponsorships are exciting, but at the same time, the case for impeachment is so clear that these Members of Congress are actually just doing their duty.
Those Members who do not co-sponsor H Res 333 are enabling the Bush Adminstration, Stern said, adding "People need to step on to the stage of history."
"At the urging of my constituents in Missouri's 1st Congressional District, and from Americans across the country, I cosponsored Congressman Kucinich's resolution regarding the impeachment of the Vice President because I believe that Mr. Cheney deliberately manipulated the intelligence process to deceive the Congress of the United States and the American people. That deception has resulted in a tragic, unnecessary war that has already cost the lives of over 3,300 brave Americans and has cost the taxpayers over $400 billion. The arrogant abuse of power and the complete disregard for the truth needs to stop," US Rep. Clay said in a statement prepared for Atlanta Progressive News.
US Rep. Schakowsky (D-IL) recently told The Daily Northwestern college newspaper that Cheney misled the public by "intentionally manipulating intelligence in order to launch an elective war against Iraq. I believe it is crucial that the U.S. House of Representatives investigate the vice president's actions to determine if he should be impeached for lying to the American people to justify the war in Iraq."
Missing in action was US Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) who had told WAOK radio in December 2005 he would sign a bill of impeachment of President Bush should it come across his desk [crimes committed by Bush would equally apply to Cheney in this case]. Of course, Lewis did not cosponsor US Rep. Cynthia McKinneys (D-GA) bill filed at the end of the last Session which would have impeached Bush either.
Other MIAs include US Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) who recently made comments that she thought impeaching Cheney was a good idea, as reported by AfterDowningStreet.org [Waterss Office has not returned a call seeking comment]; and US Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), who supported impeachment in the Minnesota legislature and campaigned for US Congress on the issue. This list could go on.
The new cosponsorships on Kucinichs bill are significant for a number of reasons. First, it shows there is more than one Member of Congress willing to entertain real accountability for the Bush Administration, despite the insistence of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) that impeachment is off the table.
Also, this bill is calling for actual Articles of Impeachment for Cheney, unlike the last bill which not only was related to Mr. Bush, but created an investigative committee to look into possible impeachment rather than providing for actual possible impeachment.
Therefore, cosponsorships on H Res 333 have even more weight than those which were listed on H Res 635 last Session.
Also, since the time of H Res 635, Democrats have taken control of both the US House and Senate. Thus, impeachment is even more a real possibility on account of having the potential Democratic support for the bill, even though most Democrats currently arent rushing to impeach Bush.
Because Democrats are now the Majority in Congress, we also now know that Bush refuses to be accountable to Congress, particularly on the US Invasion of Iraq. Bush has now vetoed historic legislation to attach funding for the Occupation with a deadline for withdrawal. Thus, it is now even more clear that traditional oversight mechanisms will not be effective.
The House Judiciary Committee told APN there are no plans to have hearings on impeachment of Cheney or anyone else at this time.
"Its not at this time on the Committees immediate agenda," Conyerss spokesperson said.
"Once its referred it has to be on the Committees agenda for the Committee to take it up," they said.
"In order to move a bill you have to have hearings scheduled on it," they said.
When asked by APN if Conyers taking impeachment "off the table" meant based on present information or whether it was complete abdication of a constitutional mechanism no matter what information comes forward, "All we can speak to is the present time," the spokesperson said, adding it would be unwise to speculate about the future.
"I dont think its prejudging," they said.
The 39 total co-sponsors of H Res. 635 were US Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-HI), Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Rep. Michael Capuano (D-MA), Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA), Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-MO), Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL), Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA), Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA), Rep. Bob Filner (D-CA), Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA), Rep. Jackson, Jr., (D-IL), Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN), Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA), Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-GA), Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Rep. James Oberstar (D-MN), Rep. John Olver (D-MA), Rep. Major Owens (D-NY), Rep. Donald Payne (D-NJ), Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Steve Rothman (D-NJ), Rep. Martin Sabo (D-MN), Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Rep. Hilda Solis (D-CA), Rep. Fortney Pete Stark (D-CA), Rep. John Tierney (D-MA), Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY), Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), Dianne Watson (D-CA), Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), and Rep. David Wu (D-OR).
It was largely viewed that US Rep. Conyers, the original sponsor of H Res 635, did not re-file his bill out of respect to Pelosi and his desire to be appointed Chair of the Judiciary Committee. Moreover, several Members of Congress have stated that they have followed in Conyerss steps in choosing not to introduce similar bills of their own.
About the author:
Matthew Cardinale is the News Editor of Atlanta Progressive News and may be reached at email@example.com.
This article may be reprinted in full at no cost where Atlanta Progressive News is credited.