Emergency Response to False Pardons

If President Bush issues false pardons, pardons of his subordinates for crimes that he himself authorized, people will hold local protests nationwide to demand that all three branches of our government and the media reject Bush's attempt at immunity. Everyone should go to the
nearest state or federal government building at 5 p.m. on the day the pardons are made public AND the following day to rally. You can post the details of a local protest plan here:
http://democrats.com/events   (You can search for events already planned in your area by selecting the "Bush Pardon Protests" category and searching in your zip code. )

Please bring with you: pots, pans, Constitutions.

The message we want to communicate with our show of resistance is simple:

Pardoning a crime you authorized is not pardoning at all. The pardon power does not include the power for such abuse, no matter how many pundits say it does -- and many will, even those claiming to deeply regret that sad fact.

James Madison and George Mason both argued for the creation of the impeachment power precisely in case a president ever pardoned a crime he was involved with. To claim that they simultaneously believed the pardon power to permit what the impeachment power was created to punish is absurd. To give a president the power to order murders or any other crimes committed and then pardon the criminals is not in poor taste; it is in violation of the very idea of law.

The problem is not preemptive pardons or blanket pardons, but pardons of crimes authorized by the president.

Never before has a president pardoned himself or his subordinates for crimes he authorized. The closest thing to this in U.S. history thus far has been Bush's commutation of Scooter Libby's sentence. Bush is widely expected to follow that commutation with a pardon. Not only did Libby work for the White House, but he was convicted of obstruction of justice in an investigation that was headed to the president. Evidence introduced in the trial, including a hand-written note by the vice president, implicated Bush, and former Press Secretary Scott McClellan has since testified that Bush authorized the exposure of an undercover agent, that being the crime that was under investigation.

Bush is widely expected to pardon many of his top officials for a wide variety of crimes.

We demand that President Obama reject false pardons.

We demand that the Attorney General appoint a Special Prosecutor for those Bush attempted to pardon.

We demand that Congress reject false pardons and begin impeachment of Bush and those he attempted to pardon, even if they are out of office.

We demand that the courts reject false pardons, and that challenges be brought immediately.


David Swanson is the author of the upcoming book "Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union" by Seven Stories Press and of the introduction to "The 35 Articles of Impeachment and the Case for Prosecuting George W. Bush" published by Feral House and available at Amazon.com.  Swanson holds a master's degree in philosophy from the University of Virginia. He has worked as a newspaper reporter and as a communications director, with jobs including press secretary for Dennis Kucinich's 2004 presidential campaign, media coordinator for the International Labor Communications Association, and three years as communications coordinator for ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Swanson is Co-Founder of AfterDowningStreet.org, creator of ConvictBushCheney.org and Washington Director of Democrats.com, a board member of Progressive Democrats of America, the Backbone Campaign, and Voters for Peace, a member of the legislative working group of United for Peace and Justice, and convener of the accountability and prosecution working group of United for Peace and Justice.

From ufpj-news