Arrest that Speeding President

Posted: April 3, 2007 in Politics

There is a move afoot to impeach this President for “high crimes and misdemeanors.” There is quite a bit of proof that he has violated his oath of office to the extent that impeachment just might be appropriate. After all, we are a nation of laws. That idea used to its extremes creates a society of legal absolutism.

As of this date, I am reading “The Broken Branch How Congress Is Failing America and How to Get It Back on Track[1]”. The following is my opinion based on my reading of that book and my observations of the political process. I am gaining a better perspective by my participation in the process. The idea for this essay came to me after being engaged in a conversation about impeachment by another participant in the political process. He believes impeachment is the only answer.

Should the law always be enforced absolutely? Let’s take an example – not too far removed from the proposition that the President should be impeached. A man is speeding. A police officer stops him. The policeman sees a woman in the back seat obviously in very ill health. The man explains that he is trying to get his wife to the hospital before she dies. What is the policeman to do? Should he enforce the law absolutely and write the man out a ticket while his wife lies there and dies? Or, should he turn on his flashing lights and siren, get in front of the man and clear traffic to the hospital?

Should congress take the time to engage the President in an impeachment trial that will necessarily distract everybody involved from a crisis that, left unsolved, will plunge the middle east into chaos; thus destabilizing a region that is integral to the economic health of the world? Or, should congress engage the President in a dialog, exerting its constitutionally mandated oversight duty?

I believe this is what the newly elected Democratic majority has in mind. The leadership has an ambitious agenda that includes the successful resolution of the crisis in the Middle East. If the Democratic leadership does take the Administration under control and exert its advice and consent prerogative, it will make an improvement in how our government performs.

[1] By Thomas E. Mann and Norman J. Ornstein; Oxford University Press 2006;


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