I’m starting to think Obama’s number is really up.
I have resisted impeachment talk up until now, for two reasons.
First reason: Impeachment should never, ever be considered over mere policy differences, or even over different interpretations of Constitutional law. Those are matters for the political process, and impeachment ought to be, to the extent humanly possible, an apolitical process for swift removal of actual lawbreakers from office.
Second reason: Joe Biden. I cannot disagree with the lawyer acquaintance who claims to me that he’s gotten custodial orders for people more mentally sound than “Slow” Joe.
It was the abuse of the powers of the IRS that really began to tear it for me. Laws were violated — important laws, on which the entire legitimacy of the taxing power of the United States rests. Sure, I have lots of arguments with present tax rates and deductions. My preference, notwithstanding my respect for the Brethren, is for a flat tax with a generous individual deduction: Milton Friedman was no fool. But governments do need the power to tax, albeit ours is probably taxing more than it should; and while I’m always open to arguments for other mechanisms for taxation, I suspect that, in the end, the income tax is as good (or bad) a mechanism as any. Given the impracticality of enforcing the tax code through force alone, it’s clear the system works because most of us are willing to support it. That legitimacy, and by extension the legitimacy of the federal government generally, is threatened by the Obama Administration’s abuse of the IRS’ powers.
(That, Padawans, is an argument in terms that should be appreciated even by Democrats. There is doubtless a Republican version involving much throat phlegm, to which I might also be sympathetic.)
And, if it is in fact the case that Obama’s Justice Department was prying into Congressional phone records, impeachment may now not only be right, it may now be within the realm of the possible.