Friday, February 15, 2008

It's About Time, You Bums: House Dems Finally Stand Up On Attorney Firings

By Manifesto Joe

Some of us have been waiting far too long for something like this to finally happen, given that we have an executive branch that flouts the law and even exhibits utter contempt for it.

The Associated Press reports: The House voted Thursday to hold two of President Bush's confidants in contempt for failing to cooperate with an inquiry into whether a purge of federal prosecutors was politically motivated.

Angry Republicans boycotted the vote and staged a walkout.

So the crybabies gathered up their marbles and left. More is coming on why they said they did that.

The vote was 223-32 to hold White House chief of staff Josh Bolten and former White House counsel Harriet Miers in contempt. The citations charge Miers with failing to testify and accuse her and Bolten of refusing Congress' demands for documents related to the 2006-2007 firings.

What Republicans said Democrats should be doing instead was on extending a law, scheduled to expire tomorrow, allowing the government to eavesdrop on phone calls and e-mails in the U.S. in cases of suspected terrorist activity. More from AP:

"We have space on the calendar today for a politically charged fishing expedition, but no space for a bill that would protect the American people from terrorists who want to kill us," said Minority Leader John A. Boehner, R-Ohio.

"Let's just get up and leave," he told his colleagues, before storming out of the House chamber with scores of Republicans in tow.

The vote, which Democrats had been threatening for months, was the latest wrinkle in a more than yearlong constitutional clash between Congress and the White House. The administration says the information being sought is off-limits under executive privilege, and argues that Bolten and Miers are immune from prosecution.

It's high damned time a vote was finally held, instead of just more seemingly empty threats aired. Instead of granting ever more power to a dangerous executive branch, now's the time to cut these well-tailored hooligans down to size. A bit more from AP:

If Congress didn't enforce the subpoenas, said Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the No. 2 Democrat, it would "be giving its tacit consent to the dangerous idea of an imperial presidency, above the law and beyond the reach of checks and balances."

The White House said the Justice Department would not ask the U.S. attorney to pursue the House contempt charges. However, the measure would allow the House to bring its own lawsuit on the matter.

At best, Boehner and other Republicans behaved like myopic hypocrites, and at worst, like saboteurs of any semblance of checks and balances. The Bush administration wave of U.S. attorney firings was partisan political hackery at its worst, and cost one Cabinet member his job. (Remember Fredo?) The least that could have been expected was for the other hacks to comply with the subpoenas.

Now let's see if the House Democrats actually file the lawsuits. And how about impeaching Cheney, while they're on a small roll?

Manifesto Joe Is An Underground Writer Living In Texas.

1 comment:

Marc McDonald said...

Hmmm, so the GOP throws a hissy fit and storms out because the Dems finally have the balls to investigate one out of thousands of serious Bush crimes.
I just wish that, back in the Clinton years, the Dems had stormed out of the chamber when the GOP was spending $50 million of our tax dollars investigating a blow job.
(Oh, and had they done this, the public---which at the time was giving Clinton approval ratings in the high 60s---would have approved of it).
By contrast, I think it's clear that the public wants the Dems to investigate more of Bush's crimes.
I am sick and tired of The Bush Crime Family ignoring subpoenas from Congress. And I'm even more sick and tired of this Congress rolling over for Bush.