Skip to comments.GOP Shouldn’t Use “The ‘I’ Word”
Posted on 05/22/2013 11:06:50 AM PDT by Kaslin
As new revelations underscore the administration's epic incompetence in its handling of the Benghazi disaster and IRS abuses, some Republican voices in the House and Senate, along with pundits of every persuasion, have begun to speculate about "the I word" impeachment. Even MSNBC, the most unapologetically progressive of all television news networks, has suggested that the president could face a serious effort to remove him from office.
As much as this prospect might excite the right and inspire the faithful with a renewed sense of purpose and unity, conservatives should steer clear of any push for impeachment as a catastrophic miscalculation for their cause. Regardless of damning evidence of dissembling and malfeasance that congressional committees could bring to light, there is no chance of driving the president from office, meaning that efforts to do so will damage the GOP far more consequentially than the administration.
First, a reality check: The Republicans currently control only 45 seats in the U.S. Senate and would therefore need to persuade 22 members of the Democratic caucus to vote to oust a president of their own party in order reach the two-thirds majority the Constitution requires. The possibility of winning these votes is, simply, non-existent. The last time Republicans forced a Senate vote to convict a president of "high crimes and misdemeanors," they didn't win a single Democrat to their cause.
In fact, all three of the serious impeachment drives (against Andrew Johnson in 1868, Richard Nixon in 1974 and Bill Clinton in 1998-99) occurred when the president's opponents controlled both houses of Congress by hefty margins. Nixon resigned before the House or Senate got the chance to cast final votes on the charges against him, but his Republican Party controlled 11 fewer Senate seats than Obama's Democrats today, making the prospect of removal vastly more plausible.
Given the virtual impossibility of winning an impeachment fight, any Republican efforts would be suicidal. A failed attempt at removing the president would only confirm the negative image of the GOP as hyperpartisan radicals more interested in scoring political points than working to address the nation's problems. In the Clinton era, the failed impeachment crusade boosted the incumbent's popularity while undermining support for Republicans and their leader, Newt Gingrich.
A Republican attempt at terminating the Obama presidency would also enable Hillary Clinton to reprise her role as the loyal, long-suffering help-mate working to protect a political partner unjustly persecuted by "a vast right-wing conspiracy." Instead of concentrating their attention on Obama's role in the Benghazi debacle, Republicans should focus on the more questionable role of then-Secretary of State Clinton despite the fact that she has already resigned her office and placed herself beyond the reach of impeachment. Obama can never run for the White House again, but Hillary Clinton can unless she's appropriately discredited for her role in these bloody events.
In addition to letting Clinton off the hook by aiming squarely at her boss, any impeachment drive could also boost the stock of another potential Democratic candidate, Vice President Biden. Concerted moves to push Obama from office could only enhance the stature of his constitutionally designated successor, whether those efforts succeeded or not. If Biden plays the role of president-in-waiting during an impeachment crisis, he looks more plausible in 2016.
And with no chance of success, even conjecture about impeachment ultimately serves to boost Obama. A series of scandals that looks increasingly dire on Benghazi, the IRS, improperly seized phone records from reporters and assorted prevarications with the press and public would still allow Obama a sense of victory and exoneration when he inevitably survives. Serious talk of impeachment makes any outcome less than that look like vindication.
Instead of pursuing an outgoing chief executive, Republicans should pursue the truth, no matter what. A new House select committee should uncover definitive conclusions to unanswered questions on Benghazi and the IRS. Those answers could weaken the administration even if they don't destroy it, and facilitate cooperation from a humbled White House on a conservative, reformist agenda that most Americans could embrace.
If new information exposes administration participation in especially egregious lies, there's always the chance for a resolution of censure a formal reprimand voted by Congress (and applied to only one prior president, Andrew Jackson) that would allow nervous Democrats to distance themselves from their leader without actually removing him from power. The old saying sagely declares, "If you strike the king, you must kill him." Even without a king, that's good advice for re-energized Republicans who can hardly afford reinforcement of their reputation as flailing failures.
Is Michael Medved a “concern troll”?
The White House is the epicentre, the tumor spreading the rot and cancer throughout the entire bureaucracy.
Impeach? No, arrests for treason would be better.
The only way Obama will be impeached is if the call to do so comes from Democrats. The GOP is politically incapable (and impeachment is a political process, not a legal one) of doing so without far-reaching damage to the party thanks to the race card.
That didn't work out so well for Gerald Ford. But I can see Biden's first comments after Obama resigns, paraphrasing Ford, "Our long national nightmare has just begun."
I notice that the press has now started to use the word “progressive” so they can avoid somethng more accurate, such as “Marxist” or “Hardcore Socialist.”
And, of course, congressional Republicans are letting them get away with it.
What is it about congressional Republicans that induces this state of near idiocy by which the Left gets away with these word games?
Consonant with this trend, perhaps rather than the term “Republican” we should begin to subsitute “patsy” or “milquetoast.”
Is Michael Medved a concern troll?
Yes, often. He also gets all bent out of shape when people mention Obama’s Marxist influences and leanings. I think he fashions himself to be a “Compassionate Conservatives”.
I have a way of playing a reverse race card on them -
publically state the impeachable offenses, often, loud, repeatedly,
but also state that, because of the president’s race,
it would be impossible to get a conviction,
and that even an impeachment vote in the House would cause civil unrest.
Just state it out in the open.
If Obastard’s approval rating goes down to the mid 20’s, then is when you can start talking impeachment.
Once enough Democrats begin to recognize ObaMao as a toxic albatros around their necks, there is hope that they might actually do something about it rather than political posturing.
Dear Michael: you should stick to explaining Woody Allen’s movies because you obviously know nothing about impeachment proceedings. Everyone keeps dragging up the Clinton impeachment proceedings as the model. Why? Nobody ever accused the Clinton administration of massive oral sex encounters in the White House. Nobody ever accused loads of people breaking the law while Clinton lied. The Clinton impeachment was just about one guy, Clinton. What is becoming apparent in the Obama administration is an ORGANIZED effort by many administration members to engage in wrongdoing.
Clinton = 1 person and 1 incident
Obama = many people with many incidents
Michael, you appear to be a nice guy, but what part of “one is different than many” do you not understand?
Michael Medved, the smartest dumb guy in the room.
I guess we should poll the jurors before every trial. If they say the accused is not guilty, why, I guess we shouldn’t have a trial.
A move to impeach will aid democrats and blow republican hopes for the 2014 election.
That is why democrats are having hot flashes just thinking about the possibility that republicans in the house might start a move for impeachment.
They know it would go nowhere in the democrat senate but would rally every Obama supporter to turn out for the 2014 election.
I have concerns about house democrats doing a “False Flag” scam on republicans to get an impeachment movement started and passed through the house.
House democrats could sucker republicans in by offering all the support needed to impeach in the house, knowing it would get no democrat support in the senate.
Had he been removed from office Al Gore would have become president. I shudder at the thought.
There is nothing more that I would like to see then that arrogant pos occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave impeached and removed from Office. As a matter of fact I want the entire administration impeached and removed from office
Justice is blind, Mr. Medved. Hopefully whatver adults still remain in Congress will soon realize this.
Very well said