Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama laid out list of political shortcomings he sees in the Bush administration but said he opposes impeachment for either President George W. Bush or Vice President Dick Cheney.Seriously, what the fuck does he think has been going on at the White House for the past six years? The president's use of signing statements alone is a grave, intentional breach of his authority—and those are the mere tip of the massive, ship-of-state-wrecking iceberg that is his administration's profound contempt for the law.
Obama said he would not back such a move, although he has been distressed by the "loose ethical standards, the secrecy and incompetence" of a "variety of characters" in the administration.
…"I think you reserve impeachment for grave, grave breeches [sic], and intentional breeches [sic] of the president's authority," he said.
Obama is completely off base here. As Maha points out, it would have been one thing if he "had he just made some noises about impeachment being a serious matter and not something to speculate about without thorough vetting, or something like that," but he didn't. And he didn't merely say something like Pelosi's infamous "impeachment is off the table" dipshittery, either—which was bad enough. No, Obama took it a step further and said that impeachment should be reserved for "grave, grave breaches, and intentional breaches," then said he doesn't support it for the Bush administration, ergo suggesting that the Bush administration has not engaged in grave, intentional breaches of presidential authority. Swell.
Worse yet, he uses "playing politics" as an excuse, solidifying yet further the idea that impeachment is not about lawbreaking, but political game-playing: "I believe if we began impeachment proceedings we will be engulfed in more of the politics that has made Washington dysfunction. We would once again, rather than attending to the people's business, be engaged in a tit-for-tat, back-and-forth, non-stop circus." Jebus.
You know, I'm not even objecting to Obama's statements from a place of necessarily disagreeing with an anti-impeachment position; there are good arguments for and against impeachment, and I quite genuinely respect positions on both sides of that debate. I object to everything else that he's saying. I mean, he can't seriously believe that ridding the White House of criminals isn't "attending the people's business," and yet it sure as shit sounds like he does, because he's so intent on staying above the fray. Bully for you. Wouldn't want you to damage your presidential aspirations by doing anything kooky like trying to rescue our country from its insane hijackers.
Obama's big solution is to "vote the bums out." As if to highlight what a truly ridiculous statement that actually is, the next paragraph in the story is: "The term for Bush and Cheney ends on Jan. 20, 2009. Bush cannot constitutionally run for a third term, and Cheney has said he will not run to succeed Bush."
Meanwhile: Pelosi also still opposing impeachment; says Bush isn't "worth impeaching." Yeah, I'm not sure acting as though the guy still leading the country (and prosecuting a devastating war that's undermining our security and reputation and robbing our treasury every single day) is beneath contempt is really the way to go here. Yeesh.