House Judiciary Committee Holds Historic Hearings on the Case for Impeachment

Democracynow.org | July 28, 2008

The House Judiciary Committee held historic hearings on Friday about whether the White House overstepped its constitutional authority during the presidency of George W. Bush and whether or not such abuses would justify his impeachment. The hearing was billed as one on “Executive Power and Its Constitutional Limitations.” Although the title expressly did not include the word “impeachment,” several Democratic Congress members and witnesses used the opportunity to begin impeachment proceedings against the President and Vice President. We play highlights. [includes rush transcript]

Click photo below to read, listen to, or watch the whole story:

Watch Highlights on Democracy Now! Covers the Historic Hearings on the Case for Impeachment

Watch Highlights on Democracy Now!

“Imperial Presidency” hearing coverage

Friday’s House Judiciary Hearing on Impeachment: A Victory and a Challeng
baltimorechronicle.com | July 29, 2008

US Congressional Panel Hears Testimony on Case for Bush Impeachment
voanews.com | July 25, 2008

House Committee Considers the “I” Word
thenation.com
| July 25, 2008

Hearing Videos

Kucinich enters hearing to cheers:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2MWTh0QF40

Rep. Robert Wexler:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_T1ojrKhp6E

Rep. Steve King:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4eZxCloEbQk

Rep. Jerrold Nadler:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hL7259BAP9s

Rep. Dennis Kucinich:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRAcenaTVkQ

Bruce Fein:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=80IphtHrFzg

Vincent Bugliosi:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDAFozFn4kU

Bruce Fein:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXyDK2-p4fU

Vincent Bugliosi:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q53p34yzZac

Vincent Bugliosi:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7abu9a0xtNI

Rep. Baldwin:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFNmanXtZ9o

More Videos here >>

UPDATE: “Imperial Presidency” hearing in Congress held Friday, July 25th. Be there.

I went down to the Rayburn House Office Building with Lisa and Thomas and stood outside holding our Impeach THEM! signs. I was extremely disappointed to not see one other Takoma Parkian… We stood there for a little over an hour. Lisa actually got in to one of the overflow rooms. I listened to the entire hearing on c-span radio. It was far more heavy hitting than we imagined it would be. Thank you to all the brave members of congress especially Denis Kucinich who are doing all they can to save our country and to try to restore and protect our cherished Constitution.

David Swanson provided live blogging (Thanks David!).

I will post the audio link soon.

Maryland troopers spied on activist groups

Protesters added to database of terrorist suspects

Shaun Waterman UNITED PRESS INTERNATIONAL | Friday, July 18, 2008

Undercover Maryland state troopers infiltrated three groups advocating peace and protesting the death penalty — attending meetings and sending reports on their activities to U.S. intelligence and military agencies, according to documents released Thursday.The documents show the activities occurred from at least March 2005 to May 2006 and that officers used false names, which the documents referred to as “covert identities” – to open e-mail accounts to receive messages from the groups.

Also included in the 46 pages of documents, obtained by the Maryland chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, is an account of an activist’s name being entered into a federally funded database designed to share information among state, local and federal law-enforcement agencies on terrorist and drug trafficking suspects.

ACLU attorney David Rocah said state police violated federal laws prohibiting departments that receive federal funds from maintaining databases with information about political activities and affiliations.

The activist was identified as Max Obuszewski. His “primary crime” was entered into the database as “terrorism – anti govern(ment).” His “secondary crime” was listed as “terrorism – anti-war protestors.” The database is known as the Washington-Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, or HIDTA.

“This is not supposed to happen in America,” said Mr. Rocah. “In a free society, which relies on the engagement of citizens in debate and protest and political activity to maintain that freedom … you should be able to attend a meeting about an issue you care about without having to worry that government spies are entering your name into a database used to track alleged terrorists and drug traffickers.”

Mr. Rocah called the surveillance “Kafka-esque insanity.”

State police Chief Col. Terrence B. Sheridan said the agency “does not inappropriately curtail the expression or demonstration of the civil liberties of protesters or organizations acting lawfully.”

The surveillance of Mr. Obuszewski, of Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore, and another person came to light during his trial for trespassing and disorderly conduct in a 2004 protest outside the National Security Agency’s headquarters in Fort Meade, Md.

Documents released by the prosecution revealed that the protesters had been under surveillance by an entity called the Baltimore Intelligence Unit.

The Maryland ACLU sued last month, claiming the state police refused to release public documents about the surveillance of peace activists.

THE BALTIMORE SUN VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS ACLU staff attorney David Rocah (sitting left) was alongside organizer Max Obuszewski, whose name was entered into a counterterrorism database, at a press conference in Baltimore.

The documents, which include intelligence reports and printouts from the database, show that several undercover officers from the state police’s Homeland Security and Intelligence Division attended meetings of three groups: Mr. Obuszewski’s group; the Coalition to End the Death Penalty; and the Committee to Save Vernon Evans, a convicted murderer who was slated for execution.

The documents show at least 288 hours of surveillance over the 14-month period. The undercover officers attended at least 20 organizing meetings at community halls and churches and a dozen rallies against the death penalty, including several at the state’s SuperMax jail in Baltimore.

Included in the documents are references to a proposed sit-in at the offices of Baltimore County State’s Attorney SandraA. O’Connor. However, they show no trooper reports of violence or threats of violence. Organizers repeatedly stressed the importance of peaceful and orderly demonstrations, the documents show.

“There were about 75-80 protestors at the rally and none participated in any type of civil disobedience or illegal acts,” said one report of a demonstration against the death penalty at the SuperMax jail. “Protesters were even careful to move out of the way for Division of Correction employees who were going into the parking lot for work.”

Still, information about the protesters and their activities was sent to seven agencies, including the National Security Agency and an unnamed military intelligence official.

“Americans have the right to peaceably assemble with others of a like mind and speak out about what they believe in,” Mr. Rocah said. “For state agencies to spend hundreds of hours entering information about lawful and peaceful political activities into a criminal database is beyond unconscionable. It is a waste of taxpayer dollars, which does nothing to make us safer from actual terrorists or drug dealers.”

It’s showtime!! “Imperial Presidency” hearing in Congress next Friday, July 25th. Be there.

For Immediate Release
July 17, 2008
Contact: Jonathan Godfrey (Conyers)

(Washington)—Today House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, Jr. announced that, on July 25, the House Committee on the Judiciary will hold a hearing on the Imperial Presidency of George W. Bush and possible legal responses.

“Over the last seven plus years, there have been numerous credible allegations of serious misconduct by officials in the Bush Administration,” said Conyers. “At the same time, the administration has adopted what many would describe as a radical view of its own powers and authorities. As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, I believe it is imperative that we pursue a comprehensive review commensurate to this constitutionally dangerous combination of circumstances. Next Friday’s hearings will be an important part of that ongoing effort.”

The Committee is expected to examine a range of legal and legislative responses to allegations of administration misconduct and their expansion of executive branch power.

Since the beginning of the 110th Congress, the Committee has conducted extensive oversight into allegations of misconduct by the administration, including: (1) improper politicization of the Justice Department and the U.S. Attorneys offices, including potential misuse of authority with regard to election and voting controversies; (2) misuse of executive branch authority and the adoption and implementation of the so-called unitary executive theory, including in the areas of presidential signing statements and regulatory authority; (3) misuse of investigatory and detention authority with regard to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals, including questions regarding the legality of the administration’s surveillance, detention, interrogation, and rendition programs; (4) manipulation of intelligence and misuse of war powers, including possible misrepresentations to Congress related thereto; (5) improper retaliation against administration critics, including disclosing information concerning CIA operative Valerie Plame, and obstruction of justice related thereto; and (6) misuse of authority in denying Congress and the American people the ability to oversee and scrutinize conduct within the administration, including through the use of various asserted privileges and immunities.

The July 25 hearing will be held at 10:00 a.m. in room 2141 of the Rayburn House Office Building. Additional information, including witness participation, will be announced next week.

Naomi Wolf: Fascist America, in 10 easy steps

The Guardian | Tuesday April 24, 2007

“From Hitler to Pinochet and beyond, history shows there are certain steps that any would-be dictator must take to destroy constitutional freedoms. And, argues Naomi Wolf, George Bush and his administration seem to be taking them all”

read the article >>

Video: Naomi Wolf addressing large crowd

  • A lot of her mail goes missing and the mail that gets delivered is opened – even the mail from her daughter at summer camp.
  • With elections coming up and a criminal government still holding the reigns, Naomi reminds us to be vigilant and active citizens.

Pelosi Says House Judiciary May Hold Hearings On Kucinich Impeachment Resolution

Is this just a stunt to bolster congress’s low approval rating? (9% and even lower than Bush’s)

Let’s overload the office phones of John Conyer’s, Nancy Pelosi and other Judiciary Committee members and tell them it’s about time!

Please tell them to hear all the evidence and all the witnesses– not only for Kucinich’s one article (misleading US into war) but also for ALL of the articles of impeachment.

Capitol Hill Switchboard: (202) 224-2131 , (800) 828-0498

In the News:

  1. Kucinich impeach bill charges Bush ‘fabricated threats’; Pelosi hints at possible hearing
  2. Report: Judiciary may hold hearings on impeachment
  3. Pelosi cracks door open on impeachment resolution
  4. Pelosi Slips Impeachment Onto the Table
  5. Kucinich Impeachment Resolution Hearings?
  6. Pelosi Says House Judiciary May Hold Hearings On Kucinich Impeachment Resolution