Thursday, May 24, 2007
Democrats fear that this tactic will boomerang. They fear that Bush will not be blamed if our army is left in Iraq with no money, no replacements, no supplies. They fear that Mr. Bush will be able to convince the public that it is the evil Democrats who have left our troops in such a dire strait just to try to make a political statement.
Unfortunately, the Democrats may be right. The public doesn't understand how creaky and unworkable our constitutional system is. It takes persons of genius, tolerance, and good sense to make it work. When we have a President who is so utterly divorced from reality as Mr. Bush and who, in addition, is convinced that he is doing God's work, there is nothing that Congress can do to force him to change policy. All that Congress can do is to impeach and convict him and remove him from office.
The impeachment process has worked to remove unpopular judges who otherwise serve liftime terms. It has never worked to remove an unpopular or incompetent President, if we except Richard Nixon, who resigned after impeachment rather than face a trial in the Senate.
Votes are available in the House to impeach Mr. Bush, but not in the Senate to convict and remove him from office. We have a constitutional crisis on our hands and no solution available. I hate to say it, but in some countries with a Presidential system like ours, the next step would be an assassination or a coup d'etat. Both assassinations and coups d'etat are repugnant to Americans. We are left with the stalemate in which a stubborn and self-righteous President will stare down his Congressional opponents.