The stage is set for a showdown between President George W. Bush and Congress. In the end, we might see who has the biggest balls…or perhaps if anyone has any at all.
At issue is whether or not two former White House aides will be allowed to testify before Congress in the probe of the politically-motivated firings of U.S. attorneys. Bush, as expected, claimed executive privilege but said the aides could meet, behind closed doors, in “off the record” sessions on the Hill.
While it’s no surprise that Bush claimed executive privilege it is extraordinary that he’s claiming it not on current White House aides but former staff members who, theoretically at least, are free to make up their own minds about testifying because they no longer work in the administration.
Under most circumstances, former White Counsel Harriet Miers and former political director Sara Taylor should be able to decide for themselves if they want to appear before Congress, take the fifth or fight the subpoenas.
By claiming executive privilege for both Miers and Taylor, Bush is saying that his power to control people is absolute – that it covers not only those currently working for him but also anyone who ever worked for him.
Jonathan Turley, professor of Constitutional Law at George Washington University, said Bush’s claim of executive privilege is “absurd” and that by offering to let his former aides speak in private he dilutes his case.
“It would have been far better for the White House to say that aides would not speak in any context to disclose this information,” Turley told The Hill newspaper in an interview. “Instead the White House adopted this absurd position that it’s willing … so long as there’s not a threat of perjury.”
Another Constitutional law expert, University of Richmond professor Carl Tobias says Bush’s claim of executive privilege would not hold up in court.
But legality is not a guiding principle for Bush. Neither is the law. The President has proven, time and again, that he will do whatever he damn well pleases and dare those who object to try and stop him.
So far, no one – not Congress, not the courts and not the law – have successfully blocked Bush from his vision of imperial rule from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
And those who expect Congress to step up and put a stop to Bush’s despotic rule will most likely find the Democratic leadership on the Hill is not up to the job.
To date, the new leaders on Congress have fallen on their collective asses when it comes to standing up to Bush or stopping him from riding roughshod over them, the law and the Constitution.
Bush is an absolute ruler who enjoys absolute power with the knowledge that the Democrats can do absolutely nothing to stop him.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi emasculated the Democrats when she took impeachment off the table. If Bill Clinton deserved to be impeached for lying about blow jobs from a White House intern then George W. Bush deserves not only impeachment but conviction and then a criminal trial followed by a life sentence pounding rock in Leavenworth.
But it won’t happen because Pelosi lacks the balls, both figuratively and literally, to take the necessary political risk to haul Bush before a tribunal on charges. If Harry Reid has any balls they are probably too old and shriveled to pump any testosterone into his timid veins.
Both Pelosi and Reid talk like leaders but they fail to deliver.
Both are little more than political hacks and, by continuing to allow George W. Bush to remain in the Presidency, they are both complicit and willing co-conspirators in a plot to destroy the United States of America.