Why Bush Hasn’t Been Impeached

Salon recently published an article entitled, Why Bush Hasn’t Been Impeached. The topic has always been interesting to me. After all, public confidence in the President has reached historically low levels. The crimes he has committed are far from covert. He’s hardly a charismatic leader by anyone’s measure. And, this is in a country that impeached a President for lying about his personal life. From the article:

Bush’s unpopularity is mostly a result of Iraq, which most Americans now believe was a colossal mistake and a war we cannot win. But his problems go far beyond Iraq. His administration has been dogged by one massive scandal after the other, from the Katrina debacle, to Bush’s approval of illegal wiretapping and torture, to his unparalleled use of “signing statements” to disobey laws he disagrees with, to the outrageous Gonzales and U.S. attorneys affair.

Yet, Bush has somehow avoided impeachment. The article speculates that there are a couple of possible reasons for this puzzling situation. First, the Democrats don’t necessarily stand much to gain from removing Bubba Dubya from office. It seems that every time he opens his mouth, he digs the grave a little deeper for the Republican Party. Second, much of the evidence for W’s disasters is not new. People would have to admit that they intentionally ignored the facts when supporting attacking a nation completely unprovoked.

To me, the second point is the bigger one. As a society, people in the United States seem quite reluctant to admit failures (or even mistakes). Worse yet, we tend to penalize – rather than reward – politicians for admitting less-than-perfect decisions. I’m more worried about what the world will think of the U.S. if we don’t impeach a President that has clearly violated the trust and our Constitution. Am I missing something?

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