Sweet Verdict on Scooter, But Cheney Won’t Resign
March 7, 2007
Scooter Libby, convicted felon.
How sweet it is!
Finally, some comeuppance for at least one of the folks who brought us the Iraq War.
Finally, some justice for at least one of those who engaged in illegal, slime-ball tactics to smear opponents of that war.
And how rich to see Libby’s allies squirm now.
Cheney’s fingerprints were all over Libby’s crimes. He can hide no longer. But he won’t resign because he’s a power monger and an ideologue.
There’s Mary Matalin, she who cheerleaded for Clinton’s impeachment, saying “This is sickening,” and even more laughably, “The system is broken.”
There’s John Bolton, leader of the neocon pact, saying, “This is just not the way justice should be followed.”
Oh no? You should be allowed to lie to the FBI under our system, and get away with it?
What system are these people talking about?
Clearly, they’re more comfortable with some system of royalty or some junta that bestows immunity on all those in the executive branch.
That immunity may come yet, in the form of a pardon for Scooter Libby.
But the damage has already been done.
Not just to Libby’s reputation.
But to Cheney’s too. He was Libby’s paymaster and puppeteer. His fingerprints were all over Libby’s crimes. He can hide no longer.
Giddily, some people are predicting that Cheney may tender his resignation. Ari Emanuel, over at huffingtonpost, says Cheney will submit his resignation in three weeks.
Paul Light, a professor of public service at NYU, was quoted in an AP story as saying, “It may be time for Cheney to submit his resignation.”
Well, it’s long past time, but don’t count on it.
Cheney won’t resign. For two reasons.
First, he’s married to power. He’s a power monger (or, as I like to say, a megalocheneyiac). He lives for it. He won’t willingly surrender it.
Second, he’s an ideologue. He’ll be telling himself, and his rightwing buddies will be repeating the message, that he can’t resign. They all believe that the cause requires him to stay where he is. They all worry that if he leaves, the moderates in foreign policy (like James Baker or Brent Scowcroft) will take over and that domestically no one with his clout will remain to ride herd on the bureaucracy, or to draft those signing statements, or to ensure that rightwingers get appointed everywhere.
So don’t hold your breath waiting for Cheney to resign.
There is one other option, however, which is right there in the Constitution. Article II, Section IV, says, “The President, the Vice President, and all civil officers” can be impeached.
This verdict should give new impetus to the movement to impeach the Vice President. As one of my favorite bumperstickers puts it, Impeach Cheney First.