To Impeach or Not to Impeach Obama
It was pittie/ One so wittie/ Malcontent,
Leaving reason/ Should to treason/ So be bent.
But his gifts/ Were but shifts/ Void of grace:
And his braverie/ Was but knaverie,
Vile and base.
The poem with the funny spelling was written in 1584 to memorialize the execution of a traitor. But to me it seems to describe the current occupier of the White House.
But here are some words that don’t bring him to mind at all. They come from the United States Constitution.
First, from Article II, the presidential oath of office: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
Then this, from Section 3: “[The president] shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed…”
What if the president breaks his oath of office? What if he refuses to take care that the laws be faithfully executed—but instead breaks the laws, circumvents them, or blatantly ignores them?
In that case, says the Constitution, in Section 4, “The President… shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”
For a while there I was buying into the conventional wisdom that it would be a waste of time, trying to impeach Obama. It takes a two-thirds vote in the Senate to oust a president, and it’s impossible to imagine any Democrat Senator ever voting to do that, under any circumstances whatsoever. Besides, the nooze media saw to it that the impeachment of Bill Clinton backfired on Republicans: and Republicans have ever since been terrified of repeating the experience.
But I’ve changed my mind. Barack Obama should be impeached whether the votes are there or not. If the Democrats want to clasp him to their bosom, let him be their responsibility now and in the eyes of history.
The framers of the Constitution did not include impeachment language just to cover a fantastic situation that would never happen. It’s there because they reasoned that someday it would be sure to happen.
That day has come. We now have a president so flagrantly lawless that it forces us to ask, “If this president doesn’t deserve to be impeached, what has to happen before any president can be impeached?” Obama is so defiantly lawless, he seems to be daring Congress to impeach him.
And maybe he is. Maybe he wants to go down in history as the poor little black man who was finally brought down by racists. That’s better than being remembered as the most miserable failure and fraud of a president we’ve ever had.
Uh-oh. I think I may have just talked myself out of impeaching him. Instead, just let him gasp and flop around on the bottom of the boat for the next two years, while the new Congress dismantles all his policies.
Nevertheless, for the sake of the future, we still ought to decide when enough is enough and the president has got to go. The framers made it difficult to remove a president from office; but they didn’t make it impossible.
Of course, this presupposes that we will someday have a Congress in which the qualities of integrity, honor, and courage will not be unknown.
The Congress which will take office next month has been given a mandate by the American people to stop Obama in his tracks and repair as much as possible the damage he has done to the country in a mere six years—race-baiting, throwing our entire health care system into disorder, erasing our borders, debauching and demoralizing our armed forces, and incontinently squandering public monies. Republicans have been elected to undo the harm.
Heaven help them if they ignore that mandate. And Heaven help us, too.
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