Sarah Palin published an opinion piece recently on the website Breitbart.com called “It’s Time to Impeach President Obama.”
Clearly, she has read the Constitution and understands that the House of Representatives has the sole power of impeachment. That is, she seems to understand the indictment would come from the House while the trial would take place in the Senate. It is unclear if she realizes that forcibly removing President Obama from office would require a two-thirds vote.
Palin’s opinion piece accuses Obama of years of abuse and she uses a careless metaphor, comparing us (or herself) to a battered wife, asserting “we’re the ones getting screwed.” Elsewhere, Palin’s argument is impossible to follow even after several readings. There are accusations of dereliction of duty, obstructing the economic recovery, and general lawlessness but no impeachable offenses.
The title of her piece is also carelessness. It’s time to impeach President Obama.
We impeach presidents when we have cause, not when we have time. The causes — impeachable offenses — are listed in Article 2, Section 4: “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”
In an attempt to clarify her position, Palin appeared on Sean Hannity’s Fox News program last week. She offered a few more general accusations, such as lying and defrauding the American people. She stated her opposition to Speaker Boehner’s lawsuit and repeated her call on Congress to use the one constitutional remedy it has to halt Obama’s “imperial presidency.” But she cited no impeachable offenses, no specific crimes or misdemeanors on which the House could indict and the Senate would convict.
I was very impressed the first time I saw Sarah Palin on television. Like most Americans, this was when then Governor Palin accepted the vice-presidential nomination at the 2008 Republican National Convention. That was a great speech, but the McCain/Palin ticket lost and then she resigned as governor less than a year later.
Rather than calling for Obama to be impeached and forcibly removed, perhaps Palin should be calling on Obama to follow her good example and simply resign from office.
Jack Godwin is an award-winning political scientist whose appeal spans the political spectrum. He is the author of three books on politics, most recently "The Office Politics Handbook," and is now writing his first novel, a political thriller set at the end of the Cold War, the golden age of spy fiction. To view more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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