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Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Impeachment Watch XV: How Dare They Suggest Democrats Should Not Impeach

Am I the only one who finds Glenn Greenwald's constant state of outrage tedious?

Chris Wallace peddled the same theme last month when questioning Sen. Dick Durbin. After demanding that Durbin pledge in advance not to even entertain the idea of impeaching Bush and Durbin refused, Wallace expressed his outrage: “Are you saying Senator, that you would consider the impeachment of a Commander-in-Chief in time of war." The national media has plainly embraced the idea that Congressional investigations of The President -- based on some sort of raucous and crazed notion that he did something wrong or that he's not a real good guy -- is just out-of-bounds, something that could be designed only to feed the rabid Leftist hatemongers and/or to seek vengeance, and is clearly not something that serious, mainstream, responsible national political figures could endorse.

Well, you know how it is; we are now to the point where we no longer trust Democrats to tell us what they're really thinking. Most of the time they go with a politically palatable response like Nancy Pelosi:

REP. PELOSI: That would be if—I said we’d have hearings on the war. We’d have hearings on the war. But I don’t see us going to a place of an impeachment or all of that.

MR. RUSSERT: Is impeachment off the table?

REP. PELOSI: Well, you never know where the facts take you, but the—for any president. But, but that isn’t what we’re about. What we’re about is going there and, and having high ethical standards, fiscal soundness and a level of civility that brushes away all this fierce partisanship.

So when Turban Durbin refuses to rule it out, Chris Wallace senses a story and tries to pin him down:

WALLACE: Senator, you said that the impeachment question is not a valuable discussion to have now. You didn't rule it out.

DURBIN: I can't rule anything out until the investigation is complete. I don't want to prejudge it. But if this president or any president violates the law, he has to be held accountable, and that accountability, of course, is in the hands of the United States House of Representative and the Senate.

WALLACE: So you're saying that impeachment is a possibility.

DURBIN: I'm not ruling it in or out at this point in time. I think, in fairness to our government, and to be as honest as I can be, we need more information about the nature of this program and whether, in fact, it violated the law. If we find that it did...

WALLACE: Senator, I want to follow up on this, because I'm a little bit surprised. You're saying that President Bush, who is the commander in chief in a time of war — you're not ruling out the possibility that he has broken the law, committed high crimes and misdemeanors, and could be subject to impeachment.

DURBIN: Chris, you're trying to put words in my mouth, and I'm not going to go there.

WALLACE: No, you said you're not ruling it in or out.

DURBIN: No, sir. What I'm saying is that we need an investigation. We have a responsibility to ask the hard questions, to find out what the nature of the program is and whether the president violated the law.

You want to move it to some extreme. I can understand that's what happens on these Sunday morning talk shows. I'm not going there. But I do know that as a member of the Senate, we all have a responsibility to hold every president accountable.

If this president has broken the law, if he has violated the constitution, that is a very serious charge.

WALLACE: And at this point, from what you know, do you believe that, in fact, he has violated the law and violated the constitution?

DURBIN: At this point, I can find no explanation from this administration to justify this warrantless wiretap.

WALLACE: So the answer to my question as to breaking the law and violating the constitution?

DURBIN: Well, I'm waiting for more information. And you would think the information would be forthcoming, as Senate Judiciary Committee hearings and Senate Intelligence Committee hearings would give us that information.
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