PDHblog This is a place for members of Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i to express their thoughts, hopes and exasperations about political happenings.

November 20, 2008

Should Kucinich succeed Waxman on Oversight Committee?

Filed under: Dennis Kucinich,General,National Politics — Tags: , , — BobSchacht @ 2:02 pm

The Blogger known as “EmptyWheel,” who wrote the book on Scooter Libby and live-blogged his trial more effectively than anyone else, has made an interesting proposal, now that Henry Waxman seems headed over to chair the Commerce committee in place of Dingell. That is, she is proposing Kucinich to head the U.S. House Oversight  committee.  Kucinich would certainly be interesting as chair, although, as EW writes in her blog, he’d have to learn how to manage Rep. Issa as Republican Minority leader, which can be a major challenge in itself.

As an alternative to Kucinich, she is proposing Rep. Elijah Cummings. Going by seniority alone, the senior member on Oversight, after Waxman, is Edolphous Towns.  Um, yes, I don’t know anything about him either,  and neither does EW.

Wouldn’t it be fun to see Dennis with a gavel? Kucinich has a strong following here in the Isles, so perhaps some messages to Abercrombie and/or Hirono might help.


January 30, 2008

Kucinich Out, Edwards Out: What Next?

The withdrawal of Dennis Kucinich, followed by today’s announcement of Edwards’ “suspension” of his campaign, forces progressives to assess our diminishing options in the Democratic presidential race. We have choices to make as individuals, and PDH has a choice to make as an organization. And the imperatives may not be the same.

So let me talk about the options facing PDH. Given my sense of opinion within our group, I can see 3 possible options: (more…)

January 10, 2008

Who is the most progressive presidential candidate?

OK, here’s this to ponder, from Progressive Punch, listed in descending order by their Progressive Score:

Senator Clinton    91.29    16/100
Senator Obama      88.76    24/100
Rep. Kucinich      87.42   121/432
Senator Dodd       86.57    28/100
Senator Biden      84.26    31/100

Ha! You didn’t know that both Obama and Clinton were more progressive than Kooch? Of course, the mix of House data is different from Senate issues, but I think these ratings will surprise many.

The big problem with Clinton’s score, for me, is in the categories of

War & Peace (17 subcategories)                                    80.30      39/100(T), and
Human Rights & Civil Liberties (9 subcategories)      82.22      30/ 99(T)

Those two scores really bug me, and are not at all in progressive territory.


November 6, 2007

Showdown on House Floor

Filed under: 08 Presidential Hopefuls,Dennis Kucinich,Impeach,National Politics — BobSchacht @ 12:53 pm

Dennis Kucinich today introduced a new resolution on the House Floor today, H.Res. 799, that was the same, in substance, as his previously submitted H.Res.333 to impeach VP Cheney, as previously planned (see previous posts on this thread.) Shortly afterwards, as anticipated, someone (in this case, Steny Hoyer) moved to table Kucinich’s resolution. Kucinich guessed that his resolution would be tabled, but thought it would be meaningful to see who voted which way.

At first, the voting rolled out as expected, with a majority in favor of tabling the motion. It seemed certain that the motion to table would succeed, as expected.
But then something odd started happening: a few Republicans started voting against tabling the resolution. Then the fog rolled in as Republicans who had voted for tabling started flipping their votes to against. A bunch of us were watching this happen, and couldn’t believe our eyes. You can see the play-by-play over at FireDogLake in the comments to Jane Hamsher’s blog, I’m With Donna Edwards, beginning at comment #24.

After five minutes or so, the Republican majority in favor of tabling dwindled down to 50/50, and then started to reverse! Then some Democratic votes started fllipping, too! Then, wonder of wonders, the “Nays” caught up to the “Ayes”, and the vote-flipping continued. Much to our surprise, the motion to Table, which would essentially have killed it, was defeated in a landslide! 78 Democrats voted against tabling the motion.
This unexpected victory for Kucinich was a mixed blessing, because it obscured his original objective of seeing who might vote against tabling as a clue to who might vote in favor of impeachment: With more than 90% of Republicans voting against tabling, there was obviously some other scheme afoot.

Hoyer then moved to refer Kucinich’s motion to the House Judiciary Committee, where Kucinich’s other bill, H. Res. 333, is currently languishing. Kucinich insisted on a recorded vote for that, too. Almost all Democrats voted in favor of referral, and almost all Republicans voted against referral. The Democrats won the vote to refer. This will probably kill it, as the Democrats don’t want impeachment proceedings to distract them from other Important Business. As for myself, I wonder what could be more important than impeaching a war-monger VEEP who wants to bomb the heck out of Iran because… well, the reasons change on a weekly basis, but the Bush-Cheney administration has portrayed Iran as a member of the “Axis of Evil”. There are also a bunch of other high crimes and misdemeanors to choose from.
Kucinich has also announced plans to introduce a resolution of impeachment of President Bush. Some of the charges to choose from can be found here, to which we can probably add his illegal orders authorizing water-boarding.

UPDATE: Kagro X has provided his summary of today’s Kucinich motion, OK, so did you get that?, at DailyKos.

UPDATE II: A live blog of the proceedings is posted at http://impeachcheney.org

November 5, 2007

Kucinich to take impeachment to the House Floor

Filed under: 08 Presidential Hopefuls,Dennis Kucinich,Impeach,National Politics — BobSchacht @ 8:53 pm

This is a sequel to yesterday’s long blog,

Impeachment Kit for Kucinich Nov. 6 Action

David Swanson forwarded this account of Congressman Kucinich’s conference call this afternoon:

Date: Mon, 05 Nov 2007 20:25:17 -0500
From: David Swanson
Subject: [Activists] Kucinich to Move Impeachment of Bush After Cheney

Kucinich to Move Impeachment of Bush After Cheney


By David Swanson

Congressman Dennis Kucinich said on a conference call Monday evening
that after moving to impeach Vice President Cheney on Tuesday he will
also introduce, at a future date, a resolution to impeach President
Bush. Or rather, he would have said that on the conference call if not
for several technical SNAFUs.

The call was advertised as a one-way call on which only Kucinich could
speak, but Kucinich was unable to get through because of the incredible
number of people on the call (I have no count yet, but the dings of the
new people coming on were a steady stream of noise for half an hour).

So Kucinich phoned me, and I held one of my phones up to another so that
everyone on the call could hear him. That was working fine for about 20
seconds, until the geniuses running the call chose that moment to mute
everyone except Dennis (without stopping to realize that by muting me
they were muting Dennis). So, Kucinich gave a nice speech through my
phones, but I was the only one listening.

Here’s what he said:

He is going to introduce a privileged resolution on the floor of the
U.S. House Tuesday morning to force a vote on his resolution to impeach
Cheney (H Res 333). While that bill includes offenses related to Iraq
and Iran, Kucinich plans to focus his remarks on Iran and the fact that
the current Pentagon bill includes funding to retrofit bombers to carry
15-ton bombs.

Kucinich said he would hold a press conference at 3 p.m. in 2456 Rayburn
House Office Building, Washington, D.C., and would post on his House
website and at http://impeachcheney.org an account of what transpired on
the floor.

He said that there might be an actual debate on the substance of the
charges, for which he said he was prepared, or there might be a motion
to table the matter (effectively killing it if successful), or it might
be referred to a committee. If it is sent to committee, Kucinich said,
it will be the House Judiciary Committee. I asked whether (as has been
done with impeachment resolutions in the past) he would be able to
insist on a time limit for the committee to report back. Kucinich seemed
unsure whether that could be done, but proposed that whether or not the
matter is sent to committee he might start a discharge petition as
another tool for forcing real action on the floor of the House.

Currently H Res 333 sits in the Constitution Subcommittee of the House
Judiciary Committee, where Chairman Jerrold Nadler has done nothing with
it for months.

Kucinich expressed great appreciation for what all the activist groups
and individuals on the call are doing to help promote impeachment. He
also wanted to let everyone know that he will not only continue pushing
for the impeachment of Cheney but will also take up the impeachment of
Bush with a new resolution.

This was terrific to hear. I wish I had not been the only one to hear it.


In addition to the conference call, you can read a transcript of Kucinich’s warm-up letter,

IT’S TIME TO IMPEACH CHENEY, By Congressman Dennis Kucinich, special to www.ImpeachCheney.org.

If you heard Keith Olberman’s Countdown tonight, you will welcome the idea that Kucinich will also be offering a resolution to impeach Bush, who is almost certainly guilty of the crime of authorizing torture. Bush’s nominee for AG apparently knows that, too, which led to much squirming in his seat as he was pelted with questions about waterboarding. The sophistry of his answers is revealing.

We must get our representatives to wake up, and do the right thing. If you have not already done so, review the action kit sent yesterday and do what you can. The next few days could be a critical turning point for the future of our country.

Mahalo nui loa,
Bob Schacht

November 4, 2007

Impeachment Kit for Kucinich Nov. 6 Action

Filed under: Dennis Kucinich,Impeach,National Politics — BobSchacht @ 8:15 pm

The impeachment movement is about to get a majoImpeach Cheney logor jolt!

First, a little review:
On Tue, 23 Oct 2007, the national impeachment committee of Progressive Democrats of America announced that

On Tuesday, October 23rd, in a nationwide phone call to impeach organizers presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich announced he will go before the U.S. House of Representatives on a point of personal privilege to move the impeachment of Dick Cheney.

Impeachment leader David Swanson then announced when this would take place:

Impeachment is coming to House floor on November 6th. Act now!


Congressman Dennis Kucinich, whose bill to impeach Cheney has 22 sponsors, will introduce a resolution on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on November 6.

November 6th??? November 6th??? Isn’t that the date in even-numbered years that we hold elections? Hmmm. (more…)

September 15, 2007

Health Care Forum Rocks!

Filed under: 2Healthcare,Dennis Kucinich,HI Politics — BobSchacht @ 9:02 pm

A health care forum was held this afternoon at the University of Hawaii Architecture auditorium. It was organized by Progressive Democrats of Hawaii, with Josh Frost as event organizer*. The panelists included Ah Quon McElrath, Social and Labor Justice Activist, Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), Representative John Mizuno, Vice Chair of the Hawai’i State House Legislative Health Committee, and Fred Dodge, M.D. I estimate that were at least 150 people in the audience, in an auditorium that seats about 200 people. I’m not going to try to give a complete review here; please feel free to add anything important by leaving a comment.

Josh got things going with a few announcements, including information about Progressive Democrats of Hawai’i. He mentioned our S.H.I.P.S. platform, with its 5 planks: Stop the war; Healthcare for all; Impeach Bush & Cheney; Public funding of elections, and Sustainable environment. This platform drew substantial applause, especially the Impeachment plank. (more…)

April 25, 2007

Finally!! (and what the hell?)

Filed under: Dennis Kucinich,Impeach — frosty @ 9:01 am

(i actually posted this last night, but it didn’t take)

the word is out.  yesterday dennis kucinich filed articles of impeachment against vice president dick cheney.  this is a fantastic first step and could be a great lesson for this administration about the constitution (i’m not sure they’ve ever read it).  when i saw the headline, i nearly jumped out of my seat in excitement.  then i read the rest of the article.  it seems mr. kucinich doesn’t plan on putting a whole lot of effort into really getting the ball rolling on this.  what’s more, the speaker of the house, mousy nancy pelosi doesn’t mince words when she says keeping (and gaining more) the democrats in power is more important than any impeachment proceedings.

its true that i probably don’t understand the political nuances that are necessary to function in DC, but pelosi comes right out and says that politics is more important that doing what’s right.  there’s more at stake here than getting the president and vice president out of office.  impeachment proceedings would send a clear message, to both republican and democratic future presidents that the people will not tolerate the discarding of the constitution for power or political gain.  what this says to me is the democrats don’t like bush and what he does, but they wouldn’t mind it nearly as much if bush were a democrat.

maybe i’ve become cynical about out government, but it seems to me neither party is really interested in anything other than getting and keeping power.  of course, there are members of each party that don’t fit that mold, but as entities both parties are completely corrupt.

i applaud representative kucinich for taking this bold step forward, even if he doesn’t plan to take another.  his actions will add fuel to the fire among liberals and add force to the conversation that’s going on nationwide with regard to impeachment.  and i hope more democrats in the house will wake up and choose to do what’s right, instead of choosing the path of least resistance to keeping their jobs and growing the democratic majority in congress.

what good will a democratic president be if he (or she) continues to ignore the constitution?

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