Tuesday, July 17, 2007

RE: Libs/Cons agree Administration must be Impeached to save US

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From: Pamela's Protest
Date: Jul 16, 2007 10:43 PM


Libs/Cons agree Administration must be Impeached to save US

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From: Iconoclasm (U.S. National) [Brad/Deez]
Date: Jul 16, 2007 7:37 PM


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From: SpeedReeser
Date: Jul 16, 2007 7:33 PM


From: [JOE]™
CarolAnn



Liberal /Conservative Agree: Impeach Cheney & Bush PlzRepost







July 13, 2007

Transcript from: http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/07132007/transcript2.html

Bill Moyers talks with Bruce Fein and John Nichols

July 13, 2007

Bill Moyers talks with Bruce Fein and John Nichols
BILL MOYERS: One of the fellows you're about to meet wrote the first article of impeachment against President Clinton. Bruce Fein did so because perjury is a legal crime. And Fein believed no one is above the law. A constitutional scholar, Bruce Fein served in the Justice Department during the Reagan administration and as general counsel of the Federal Communications Commission. Bruce Fein has been affiliated with conservative think tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute and the Heritage Foundation and now writes a weekly column for THE WASHINGTON TIMES and Politico.com.

He's joined by John Nichols, the Washington correspondent for THE NATION and an associate editor of the CAPITOL TIMES. Among his many books is this most recent one, THE GENIUS OF IMPEACHMENT: THE FOUNDERS' CURE FOR ROYALISM. Good to see you both. Bruce, you wrote that article of impeachment against Bill Clinton. Why did you think he should be impeached?

BILL MOYERS: Bruce you wrote that article of impeachment against Bill Clinton. Why did you think he should be impeached?

BRUCE FEIN: I think he was setting a precedent that placed the president above the law. I did not believe that the initial perjury or misstatements-- that came perhaps in a moment of embarrassment stemming from the Paula Jones lawsuit was justified impeachment if he apologized. Even his second perjury before the grand jury when Ken Starr's staff was questioning him, as long as he expressed repentance, would not have set an example of saying every man, if you're president, is entitled to be a law unto himself. I think Bush's crimes are a little bit different. I think they're a little bit more worrisome than Clinton's. You don't have to have--

BILL MOYERS: More worrisome?

BRUCE FEIN: More worrisome than Clinton's-- because he is seeking more institutionally to cripple checks and balances and the authority of Congress and the judiciary to superintend his assertions of power. He has claimed the authority to tell Congress they don't have any right to know what he's doing with relation to spying on American citizens, using that information in any way that he wants in contradiction to a federal statute called the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. He's claimed authority to say he can kidnap people, throw them into dungeons abroad, dump them out into Siberia without any political or legal accountability. These are standards that are totally anathema to a democratic society devoted to the rule of law.

BILL MOYERS: You're talking about terrifying power but this is a terrifying time. People are afraid of those people abroad who want to kill us. Do you think, in any way, that justifies the claims that Bruce just said Bush has made?

JOHN NICHOLS: I think that the war on terror, as defined by our president, is perpetual war. And I think that he has acted precisely as Madison feared. He has taken powers unto himself that were never intended to be in the executive. And, frankly, that when an executive uses them, in the way that this president has, you actually undermine the process of uniting the country and really focusing the country on the issues that need to be dealt with. Let's be clear. If we had a president who was seeking to inspire us to take seriously the issues that are in play and to bring all the government together, he'd be consulting with Congress. He'd be working with Congress. And, frankly, Congress, through the system of checks and balances, would be preventing him from doing insane things like invading Iraq.

BRUCE FEIN: In the past, presidents like Abe Lincoln, who confronted a far dire emergency in the Civil War than today, sought congressional ratification approval of his emergency measures. He didn't seek to hide them from the people and from Congress and to prevent there to be accountability. And, of course, Congress did ratify what he had done. Secondly, sure, times can be terrifying. But that also should alert us to the fact that we can make mistakes. The executive can make mistakes.

Take World War II. We locked up 120,000 Japanese Americans, said they were all disloyal. Well, we got 120,000 mistakes. They lost their property. They lost their liberty for years and years because we made a huge mistake. And that can be true after 9/11 as well. No one wants other downgrade the fact that we have abominations out there and people want to kill us. But we should not inflate the danger and we should not cast aside what we are as a people. We can fight and defeat these individuals, these criminals, based upon our system of law and justice. It's not a-- we have a fighting constitution. It's always worked in the past. But it still remains the constitution of checks of balances.

BILL MOYERS: A fighting constitution--

BRUCE FEIN: It's a fighting constitution that enables us-

BILL MOYERS: What do you mean?

BRUCE FEIN: That with the-- with the consent of Congress and the president working hand in glove with consistent with due process of law, we have the authority to suspend habeas corpus in times of invasion or rebellion. It has enabled us to defeat all of our enemies consistent with the law.

BILL MOYERS: Congress did not stand up to George Bush for five years when it was controlled by Republicans. And I don't see any strong evidence that the Democrats are playing the role that you think the Congress should be playing.

BRUCE FEIN: That is correct. But it doesn't exculpate the president that Congress has not sought immediately to sanctions his excesses.

BRUCE FEIN: --exactly right. And Bill, this could not happen if we had a Congress that was aggressive, if we had a Congress the likes of Watergate when Nixon was president and he tried to-- obstruct justice and defeat the course of law. We have a Congress that basically is an invertebrate.

BILL MOYERS: But why is Congress supine?

JOHN NICHOLS: They are supine for two reasons. One, they are politicians who do not-- quite know how to handle the moment. And they know that something very bad happened on September 11th, 2001

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