Saturday, April 21, 2007

On the Radio

I was listening to Air America Radio on 620Am KPOJ yesterday. Senator Bernard Sanders (Social Democrat from Vermont) was a guest on the Thom Hartmann Show. A couple things that were said got to me, so i got in the queue to chime in.

The breaking news was that the Vermont senate had just distinguished itself as the first legislative body to call for the concurrent impeachments of Messers Bush and Cheney. To my utter astonishment, Sen. Sanders is afraid to support this. He rightfully recognizes that the rightwing scream machine would make political hay over impeachment and it might indeed cost the Democrats politically in 2008. Sanders referred to the effort as "futile," but i would remind the Senator that for impeachment all you need is a majority of the House. Whether or not the Senate convicts is another issue. If you think it's likely Bush and Cheney have committed high crimes and misdemeanors then the last thing you should be doing is discouraging impeachment, which in my mind in important for Americas standing in the world.

I understand and respect Bernie's political pragmatism. But in this case i have to insist that Congress stands on principle, despite the possible consequences. Besides, if Bush and Cheney were successfully removed, there would be no obstacle standing the the way of extracting most of the American forces from the civil war in Iraq.

Sanders likened his stance on impeachment to a Nader supporter who wound up voting for Al Gore instead, making the "tactical" decision to pursue the lesser evil path. Thom then volunteered:

"I voted for Nader in 2000 and later realized it was a mistake."
Unless Hartmann cast his ballot in Florida, he should have no reason to regret voting his conscience. Let's get rid of the need to vote for mediocre over evil and bring in Instant Runoff voting!

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