Published: Friday September 28, 2007
Rep. Dennis Kucinich says he is so concerned about what he sees as the Bush administration’s push for a war with Iran that he is considering using a parliamentary measure to force the House of Representatives to vote on impeaching Vice President Dick Cheney.”We’re preparing for another war, and they’re going to destroy America,” the Ohio Democrat said Thursday on the Ed Schultz show. “We have a government in place right now that has to be challenged. I’m seriously thinking about calling a privileged resolution on impeachment of the vice president and forcing a vote on the floor of the House.”
A privileged resolution would force the full House to debate about whether to proceed with impeachment, but it remains unclear precisely how, when or whether Kucinich would be able to introduce such a resolution. Privileged measures “may be called up on the floor whenever another measure is not already pending” and the House agrees to consider it, according to the Congressional Research Service.
Privileged measures can include questions of House privileges or resolutions of inquiry, according to the CRS report.
A conservative site set up to push for former President Bill Clinton’s impeachment lays out a strategy to bring such a measure to the House floor.
“According to Jerome Zeifman, however, it is possible that such a resolution could be called up for an immediate vote,” the Conservative Caucus site observes. “But that option appears to be within the control of the Speaker of the House and the Majority Leader.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who took control after last year’s Democratic takeover of Congress, maintained that impeachment is “off the table” as recently as this week in an interview with CNN.
Kucinich introduced a resolution calling for Cheney’s impeachment this spring. Since then the bill has gained more than a dozen co-sponsors, but it seems to be dying a slow death in the House Judiciary Committee. It’s chairman, John Conyers, has stood with Pelosi in refusing to debate the impeachment resolution or bring it to the House floor for a vote.
A Kucinich spokeswoman declined to comment when contacted by RAW STORY. An official in the House Parliamentarian’s office did not return a call seeking comment.
The following audio clip is from The Ed Schultz Show, broadcast on September 27.
h/t: After Downing St
Kucinich to Force Impeachment Vote on the House Floor
Sept. 27, 2007
This bombshell just dropped by Rep. Dennis Kucinich on the Ed Schultz show. Kucinich is considering forcing an impeachment vote on a “privileged resolution” on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.
“We’re preparing for another war, and they’re going to destroy America,” Rep. Dennis Kucinich said Thursday. “We have a government in place right now that has to be challenged. I’m seriously thinking about calling a privileged resolution on impeachment of the vice president and forcing a vote on the floor of the House.”
Time to call your representative and let him/her know that you will not support any candidate who doesn’t support accountability and the rule of law.
You can reach the Capitol switchboard toll-free at 1-800-426-8073.
More details to follow on this post as this news develops… As a result of this article, Impeach for Peace has been asked this question: What is a “privileged resolution?”
The following was found on InetResults.com:
1. High Constitutional Privilege.
In order to qualify as a resolution or memorial of high constitutional privilege, the House member must contain a “direct” or “positive” proposal to impeach. A mere proposition to investigate conduct of a civil officer does not qualify as a high constitutional privilege even though impeachment may be contemplated as a possibility or even if the resolution or memorial is presented with “a view to impeachment.” See IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 66-71 (Sections 2045-2052) and pp. 767-69 (Sections 468-69).
A direct or positive proposal to impeach retains its high constitutional privilege even though the resolution or memorial proposing impeachment also contains a resolution that the impeachment matter be referred to an appropriate House Committee for inquiry or investigation. See IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 67-69 (Sections 2046-48). At the same time the resolution calling for an investigation or inquiry cannot also request an appropriation for funds to support the investigation or inquiry. Id. at pp. 767-68 (Section 468).
A direct or positive proposal to impeach takes precedence over everything,” even over pending business before the House under a unanimous consent agreement. Id. at p. 770 (Section 469). Indeed, impeachment is a question of constitutional privilege which may be presented at any time irrespective of previous action of the House. Id. at 71 (Section 2053).
2. Rights of the House member Presenting a Privileged Impeachment Resolution.
A member submitting a privileged resolution, memorial or motion proposing impeachment is entitled to recognition for one hour in which to debate it. A member recognized to present a privileged resolution may not be taken from the floor by a motion to refer. IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials p. 769 (Section 468). In order to secure this privilege of debate, however, the proposal must be put in writing and submitted to the Clerk of the House. Id. at pp. 770-71 (Section 470).
Once having submitted an impeachment resolution against a civil officer, then that member’s high privilege has expired. Id. at pp. 769-70 (Section 469). This rule apparently does not apply if the member files an amended impeachment resolution containing new charges or other new matters. Id. at 767-69 (Section 468).
3. Disposition of a Privileged Impeachment Resolution.
Even when an impeachment resolution does not contain within it a referral to a committee for inquiry or investigation, it appears to be the normal procedure for such a resolution to be referred to an appropriate committee — even when the resolution clearly has absolutely no support in the full House. IMPEACHMENT: Selected Materials pp. 769-70 (Section 469).
According to Jerome Zeifman, however, it is possible that such a resolution could be called up for an immediate vote; but that option appears to be within the control of the Speaker of the House and the Majority Leader. See Zeifman, Without Honor: The Impeachment of Richard Nixon and the Crimes of Camelot pp. 46-47 (1995). Hence, Congressman Robert Drinan’s Resolution impeaching Richard Nixon — filed on July 31, 1973 when there was absolutely no sentiment for impeachment was referred to the House Judiciary Committee. Later, on October 23 and 24, 1973, when 84 such resolutions were introduced, all were referred to the Judiciary Committee.
h/t: After Downing St
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