Strike up the nutroots band! Impeach-a-palooza is coming to the House floor. Dennis Kucinich announces his plans to introduce a privileged resolution that will bring articles of impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney:
Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) announced today that he will be offering a privileged resolution on the House floor next week that will bring articles of impeachment against the Vice President, Richard B. Cheney.
“The momentum is building for impeachment,” Kucinich said. “Millions of citizens across the nation are demanding Congress rein in the Vice President’s abuse of power.
“Despite this groundswell of opposition to the unconstitutional conduct of office, Vice President Cheney continues to violate the U.S. Constitution by insisting the power of the executive branch is supreme.
“Congress must hold the Vice President accountable. The American people need to let Members of Congress know how they feel about this. The Vice President continues to use his office to advocate for a continued occupation of Iraq and prod our nation into a belligerent stance against Iran. If the Vice President is successful, his actions will ensure decades of disastrous consequences.”
The privileged resolution has priority status for consideration on the House floor. Once introduced, the resolution has to be brought to the floor within two legislative days, although the House could act on it immediately. Kucinich is expected to bring it to the House floor on Tuesday, November 6.
The measure has 21 of the most rabid left-wing Democrat sponsors in the House:
Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Robert Brady (D-PA), Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-MO), Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA), Rep. Bob Filner (D-CA), Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX), Rep. Henry Johnson (D-GA), Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick (D-MI), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA), Rep. James Moran (D-VA), Rep. Donald Payne (D-NJ), Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Rep. Edolphus Towns (D-NY), Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), Rep. Diane Watson (D-CA), Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-CA) and Rep. Albert Wynn (D-MD).
A year ago this month, Nancy Pelosi spoke these words:
“I have said it before and I will say it again: Impeachment is off the table.”
Come again, Nan?
The Influence Peddler explains the rules governing “privileged resolutions” and points out that the ball is in Nancy Pelosi’s court:
Despite my experience in the House of Representatives, I can claim no expertise on a topic explored so rarely. However, it certainly seems that while Mr. Kucinich may assert that his impeachment resolution is privileged, the Speaker will have to determine that question — and her ruling may be appealed to the whole of the House.
If she rules in favor, then the debate on Kucinich’s impeachment resolution begins. If she rules against and is sustained, then it’s over before it begins.
So assuming Kucinich carries through on this — which seems inevitable — Speaker Pelosi will likely have to decide whether to deny the Netroots their fondest desire, or whether to allow an impeachment debate. If she rules against him, Mr. Kucinich could appeal her ruling, and potentially all Members of the House to go on record in favor of, or in opposition to, beginning the debate over impeachment.
That ought to help the Congressional approval rating.
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