After one, first-hand look at the immigration crisis at the U.S. border with Mexico, U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, commented, “President Obama is begging to be impeached.”
It turns out, he’s not the only the congressman thinking the same thing.
As WND reported, Stockman theorized, “He wants us to impeach him now, before the midterm election because his senior advisers believe that is the only chance the Democratic Party has to avoid a major electoral defeat. Evidently Obama believes impeachment could motivate the Democratic Party base to come out and vote.”
Similar comments were made by former U.S. Rep. Ernest Istook, R-Okla., in an editorial in the Washington Times Friday, in which the now Heritage Foundation fellow argued, “Obama wants to be impeached.”
“President Obama insists on flirting with impeachment even as House Republican leaders insist there’s no such possibility,” Istook wrote. “Already operating beyond the constitutional bounds of presidential power, Mr. Obama’s strategy is to push the bounds further rather than pulling back. He dares political foes to make his day.”
Istook also suggested Obama believes impeachment talk is a political boon to his party’s chances in the election later this year.
“Secure in the knowledge that impeachment is not the same as removal from office, Mr. Obama brings up the topic on his own and with bold defiance. Martyrdom goes well with a Messiah complex and Mr. Obama’s speeches are a non-stop litany of depicting himself as a victim of Republicans,” Istook continued, “Impeachment would be his crowning badge of victimhood, the ultimate symbol to rally his base, asking that they protect him by guaranteeing a Democrat majority in the U.S. Senate.”
Rep. John Duncan, R-Tenn., has also said he worries impeachment could backfire on Republicans.
“Every political analyst, almost, that’s really looked at this … has said that nothing would fire up the base of the Democrats more than an impeachment action, and also perhaps more importantly that it would turn off some of the independents who are right now leaning our way, ” Duncan said. “If you want to help the Democrats keep control of the Senate, this would be one way to do it, to start impeachment action.”
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Like Istook, U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., has also suggested Obama’s camp may be generating the “impeachment” talk as an intentional rallying cry.
“You know this might be the first White House in history that is trying to start narrative of impeaching its own president,” Scalise told “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace.
“The White House wants to talk about impeachment; they want to go out and fundraise off of that,” Scalise added.
True to Scalise’s accusations, the Democrats in the House immediately put out a reaction press release touting Scalise’s mention of the “I-word.”
“The fact that the third-highest-ranking Republican in the House is refusing to rule out impeachment offers a stunning view of the extreme measures this Republican Congress will take to push their reckless partisan agenda,” asserted Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y, according to The Hill. “Republicans will spend the final week before their summer vacation plotting their lawsuit against the President, and now Scalise just made it clear that impeachment is absolutely on the table for House Republicans.”
The Washington Post further discovered that after Sarah Palin penned a July 8 op-ed on Breitbart.com suggesting Obama be impeached, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, or DCCC, sent two fundraising e-mails within 24 hours and raised $500,000 over the next four days.
“Republicans are drastically overreaching with their lawsuit and impeachment talk, and the result has been a massive surge of enthusiasm from our grass-roots supporters,” said Rep. Israel, who also serves as the DCCC chairman. “A stark contrast has developed between Republicans’ focus on suing or impeaching the president and Democrats’ focus on strengthening the economy for the middle class.”
Justin Barasky, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee also chimed in, “Republican Senate candidates who legitimize impeachment talk not only motivate donors, but they reinforce just how out of touch they are and how much they’re focused on partisan political battles instead of helping their states.”
Historical precedent suggests the Democrats may be on to something. No president has ever been successfully removed from office through impeachment, and after the last attempted ouster – of Bill Clinton in 1998 – the president’s party picked up five seats in the House and held ground in the Senate, a rarity for a second-term president. The Post quotes several scholars suggesting the reason was particularly minority voters coming out in defense of the impeached president.
Nonetheless, recent polls indicate a majority of Republican voters support impeachment, and the GOP is warning there comes a point when a president can go too far.
Andrea Bozek, communications director for the National Republican Congressional Committee, told the Post, “If Democrats think the president’s blatant disregard for the Constitution is a reason to celebrate, they’re even more out of touch than we thought.”