Impeachment is just the beginning

Harper’s Scott Horton makes the case for still considering impeachment proceedings against George W. Bush in the last months of his presidency:

As the final eleven months of the Bush Administration are being counted off in Washington, the accepted wisdom is that impeachment must be taken off the table. The end is now so close by—what’s the point? Moreover, the American people would, we are told, view it as an act of over zealous partisanship, and would strike back at the polls. But these responses reflect a misunderstanding of the role that impeachment has historically played in the American democracy, and the English roots of impeachment as a constitutional device. They see in impeachment a measure which is purely ad hominem in nature, and avoid the much more important institutional aspect.

I predict that before Bush leaves office, the case for his impeachment will and should be given a more careful hearing. It must not be pursued as a partisan remedy to force a transfer of power. Rather it should be used as an institutional remedy.

I suspect the most we can hope for in the coming decades is former Bush officials worrying about their travel plans, concerned that they be arrested for crimes against humanity, such as torture, starting a war of aggression etc.

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