One could easily get whiplash trying to keep up with the Washington Post’s behavior of late. First they hire a serial plagiarist and right-wing hack to provide balance for a serious and credentialed reporter in Dan Froomkin. Then they put the case for impeachment on the front-page.
The argument for an impeachment inquiry — which draws support from prominent constitutional scholars such as Harvard’s Laurence H. Tribe and former Reagan deputy attorney general Bruce Fein — centers on Bush’s conduct before and after the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
It is argued that Bush and his officials conspired to manufacture evidence of weapons of mass destruction to persuade Congress to approve the invasion. Former Treasury secretary Paul H. O’Neill told CBS News’s “60 Minutes” that “from the very beginning there was a conviction that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he needed to go . . . it was all about finding a way to do it.” And a senior British intelligence official wrote in what is now known as the “Downing Street memo” that Bush officials were intent on fixing “the intelligence and the facts . . . around the policy.”
Critics point to Bush’s approval of harsh interrogations of prisoners captured Iraq and Afghanistan, tactics that human rights groups such as Amnesty International say amount to torture. Bush also authorized warrantless electronic surveillance of telephone calls and e-mails, subjecting possibly thousands of Americans each year to eavesdropping since 2001.
To be sure, Michael Powell’s piece is more descriptive than rhetorical. But, it lays out the case, and it does so without apology. Whether or not impreachment is good politics is discussed, but the merits of impeachment are not strongly questioned in the piece (except, predictably, by Cass Sunstein).
The public groundswell for impeachment is finally acknowledged on the front-page of the Washington Post. That’s a move in a positive direction. Perhaps they know it is time to appease the left for a few days.