In 2006, those of us who recognized the severity of President George W. Bush's abuses of the United States Constitution were disappointed when the newly-elected Democratic majority in Congress decided to take impeachment "off the table." Today, the House Judiciary Committee, under the leadership of Michigan Representative John Conyers, has the opportunity to restore the House of Representatives as a co-equal branch of government, just as the framers of the Constitution intended. If Conyers fails to assert Congress's power to enforce its subpoenas the House will be reduced to the status of a toothless parliament like the ones that adorn executive-branch dictatorships all over the world.
Not since the time of Richard Nixon's Attorney General, John Mitchell, who was the only Attorney General in American history to go to prison, has the head of the Justice Department behaved so abominably. Attorney General Michael Mukasey has chosen to obstruct Congress's subpoenas of executive branch employees despite evidence of criminal wrongdoing. Senators Charles Schumer and Diane Feinstein were the deciding votes that confirmed Mukasey. What were they thinking? Now Mukasey bucks normal procedure and refuses to begin grand jury investigations of Karl Rove's role in transforming the Justice Department into a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Republican National Committee.
Karl Rove is free to "analyze" American politics for us on Fox News, and in the pages of The Wall Street Journal and Newsweek; he appears on discussion panels and charges $40,000 a pop for speaking gigs; he signed a book deal estimated to be worth $8 to $12 million; and now he thumbs his nose at the Congress, defying its subpoenas. It's as if he thinks he's above the law and above his fellow citizens. And to top it off Rove's enabler and co-conspirator is the Attorney General himself.
Mukasey's refusal to do his job shows he is a willing accomplice in undermining the Constitutional powers of the House of Representatives as a co-equal branch of government. Can anyone think of an action more "un-American" than dismantling the "checks and balances" that James Madison and other founders so carefully put in place in 1787?
It is fitting that our current Constitutional crisis finds Karl Rove as its centerpiece. No human being has done more damage to our republic in the last hundred years than Karl Rove. He masterminded three of the slimiest, rottenest, most dishonest and divisive elections in American history; elections that brought to power a craven gang of white collar criminals who proceeded to destroy the ability of the government to function (except as a conveyor belt of cash for cronies), lied us into an illegal war in Iraq, collapsed the economy, and made torture and the suspension of habeas corpus synonymous with American "ideals." Karl Rove thinks he can tell Congress to go fuck itself. He must not be allowed to walk away Scot free from his crimes and misdeeds.
If Karl Rove can flap his pasty jowls on Fox News then he sure as hell can testify to Congress.
Karl Rove was the architect of George W. Bush's high crimes and misdemeanors, (unless you think Bush could think this stuff up by himself.) Rove was Bush's capo di tutti capi. He must be held accountable. He must appear before Congress. He cannot duck subpoenas like a petty Mafioso. Mukasey's refusal to uphold his oath of office, which is to "protect and defend" the Constitution, is in itself impeachable, so it is now up to the House of Representatives to act. Rove must be arrested and compelled to testify truthfully under penalty of perjury.
In an earlier era the Sergeant of Arms would arrest Rove and jail him in the basement of the Capitol building. But in our post-modern media age I suggest a more suitable course of action: Congress should hire "Dog the Bounty Hunter," (Duane Lee Chapman), to hunt down Rove on national television. It would be a ratings winner (especially among the coveted 18-to 29-year olds), the advertisers would be overjoyed, and the American people could finally see Rove's Pillsbury Doughboy ass cowering in the bathroom behind a shower curtain when "Dog" and his buxom wife, Beth "The Huntress," flush him out, rough him up, and slap handcuffs on him. "Dog," who is a devout Christian, would have the chance to show his patriotism, rescue his country, and arrest the highest-profile fugitive of his career. The nation would have "closure" as well as a much-needed distraction from the war and the depression.
You Can Run, Karl, But You Can't Hide.