I recently wrote to Dianne Feinstein, our Republican Senator parading as a Democrat (but then, aren't they all?) urging her to push for impeachment of the Bush/Cheney crowd.
Her is her reply:
Dear Dr. Schneider:
Thank you for your letter concerning impeachment proceedings against President Bush. I appreciate the time you took to write and welcome the opportunity to respond.
In our recent elections, the American people expressed clear disapproval with the path this country was on. They are tired of partisan politics and of an Administration that pays little heed to the wishes of the American people. They want-and deserve-a Congress that holds the Administration accountable and fulfills its Constitutional responsibility to check and balance the Executive. I share this sentiment and am determined to work hard and across party lines in the United States Senate to promote issues that are of real concern to most Americans, including the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, homeland security, global warming, and lobbying and election reform.
At this time, however, I believe that impeachment proceedings against President Bush will only divide the country even further, frustrating our hopes for a meaningful change in direction, while having little chance of success.
I have been deeply disappointed by many of this Administration's actions and have been outspoken in those instances. Nevertheless, given the challenges our country faces I believe that we need to focus on constructive and cooperative steps that would lead us in the right direction.
Again, thank you for your continued correspondence. If you have any further questions or comments, please contact my office in Washington, D.C. at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.
And here will be my reply to her, once I compose it here:
Dear Senator Feinstein,
Thank you for getting back to me about my email urging you and the rest of the Democratic-led Congress to undertake impeachment proceedings against the Bush/Cheney administration. Unfortunately, your "deep disappointment," and that of other Democratic Congresspersons, will be of no practical value in stopping the extreme right-wing juggernaut that is currently enjoying a heyday while in power even though barely 25% of the nation approves of what they are doing!
See, impeachment proceedings would not "divide the nation": the nation itself is already sick and tired of the lies, the subterfuge, the manipulation, the fear-mongering, and the abjectly arrogant disrespect for the will of the people displayed by this Administration. When 75% of the people are with you, you needn't worry about setting brother against brother; even conservative brothers agree that the war in Iraq was undertaken under false pretenses, and the rest of us are simply outraged that hundreds of thousands of lives have been lost in this useless war.
That and illegal spying, attempts to hold themselves above the rule of the Constitution, and the blatant chipping away at our civil liberties by this Administration have most of the country angry not only with them, but with you Democrats for doing less than nothing to stop them!
I do not mean to browbeat you, but the fact is that the "mainstream" you fear alienating voted you in to deal with an Adminstration out of control, and this mainstream is already disappointed in your unwillingness to do so.
If nothing else, consider the effects of political hardball: the Republicans did not hesitate to impeach President Clinton for the most innocuous of offenses against national security, while Democrats sit back and let Bush and Cheney dismantle the Constitution piece by piece. And who is in control now? The Republicans are. Do you see the connection? The party with the spine to prosecute what it sees as the shortcomings of others will catch the attention of the voters and will please them. If this sounds Machiavellian, and "below" the standards of good, liberal Democrats--well, I just think that you all might want to consider the business you are in and whether or not it is worthwhile to take a chance and actually stand up in the name of the American people to tell this Administration that we have all had enough of its disrespect and criminal behavior.
You will not divide this country by doing so. You will unite it in getting back on track to its fundamental values of true freedom and courage in the face of all enemies, real or imagined. The Bush administration has used fear to railroad the country under its power-hungry, unconstitutional policies. We need to remember what courage really consists of--not attacking countries on false pretenses, but rather not allowing injury to turn us into a pack of whimpering dogs, ready to give up our every liberty in order to obtain complete security--which will always be an impossible goal and will always lead to the most horrifying excesses of the oppressive use of power.
You all can stop this. Now.
Or you can let it go on and see where the US is in twenty years. We may still be free. I would not count on it.
Dr Erik etc etc