The controversy over whether the White House offered Joe Sestak an administration job to drop out of the Pennsylvania Democratic senate primary has some conservatives so mad they're floating the possibility of impeachment. As long as Democrats control both houses of Congress, that's obviously extremely unlikely. But the party isn't expected to fare well in the November elections, and it remains possible the GOP could retake the House, if not the Senate. If Republican did take the House, could they pursue an impeachment, whether for the Sestak offer or for something else? What would it accomplish?
- Fox News Calls Sestak Offer 'Impeachable' Fox and Friends host Steve Doocy declared that, if the White House offered Sestak a job, "That is an impeachable offense." Fox News at other times ran the banner, "FEDERAL CRIME: WH Job Offer Is An Impeachable Offense." Sean Hannity, speaking to Dick Morris, said, "that would be an impeachable offense."
- High-Ranking Republican: 'Impeachable' Rep. Darrell Issa, the ranking Republican on the House Oversight committee, said, "It's very clear that allegation is one that everyone from Arlen Spector to Dick Morris has said is in fact a crime, and could be impeachable." Fox News reports that Issa "is threatening to file an ethics compliant if Sestak doesn't provide more details about the alleged job offer."
- GOP Will Impeach for Sure The Washington Post's Jonathan Bernstein argues "that if Obama sits in the White House for six years with a GOP majority in the House of Representatives that the odds are very good -- better than 50 percent -- that he'll be impeached. Not convicted, of course, but impeached, forcing a Senate trial." Whether it's Sestak or not, "they'll have no trouble at all coming up with something." Why do it?
The incentives all run to impeachment, as far as I can tell. The leaders of such an effort would find it easy to cash in (literally, I mean) with books and appearances on the conservative lecture circuit. It's hard to believe that Rush, Beck and the rest of the gang wouldn't be tripping over each other to wear the crown of the Host Who Brought Down the socialist gangster president. And we've seen the ability, or I should say the lack thereof, of rank-and-file GOP pols to stand up to the talk show yakkers. Besides, it's not as if a new Republican majority would have a full agenda of legislative items to pass, and what they did have would face an Obama veto (and most likely death in the Senate at any rate).
- 'Feel The Impeachmentum' Liberal blogger DougJ coins the delightful term. "It doesn't seem that likely that Republicans will take over the House. But if they do, the question won't be whether or not they begin impeachment hearings, it will be whether or not the Firebag crowd supports impeachment too."
- Why GOP Should Promise Not To Impeach The Washington Monthly's Steve Benen asks, "are Republicans prepared to also take impeachment off the table in advance of these midterm elections? There's no reason for the GOP to avoid the question -- they're the ones who brought it up." Benen reminds us that in 2006, when it became clear that Democrats were about to retake the House, many conservatives suggested that Democrats would try to impeach Bush. Democrats, worrying the rumors would hurt them politically, promised not to do so. Benen asks if Republicans will follow suit.
- Impeachment Threat Could Be Good for Democrats Liberal blogger Big Tent Democrats posits, "Put the GOP in the position of having to either alienate their base or the rest of the electorate. Dems should ask the question - does the GOP want to impeach Obama?" Either way, he says, Republicans would suffer.