Pelosi's 100 Hours

Bumped from the diaries -- Jonathan... This is a great starting point for a discussion of the Netroots' role in helping craft and sell the Democrats' congressional agenda.

I want to confess that I'm left scratching my (very bald) head about Democratic public relations post-election, especially headed into the all-important Turkey Day political love-fest that we call Thanksgiving Dinner Discussion with our relatives.

As far as I can tell there is one thing that everyone in the country is aware of regarding what our new Democratic majority is going to do in what promises to be an action-packed January. That one thing is Speaker-elect Pelosi's program for the first 100 Hours of a Democratic-controlled House. Why aren't more people talking about the specifics of this? If the GOP had a 100 Hours program they'd be selling it like it was going out of style.

Heck, we in the netroots should be able to run down the list of that Democratic program as if it were the menu for Thursday's Thanksgiving dinner.

I'd like to offer a brief break-down of this 100 Hour Plan (w/ links) and speculate on how we in the netroots fit in to Democratic strategy a bit...

Let's take a look at Speaker-elect Pelosi's plan:

The Democratic One Hundred Hour Plan

1. Cleaning up Congress

a). Breaking the link between lobbyists and legislation
b). Commiting to Pay as You Go
c). No new Deficit Spending

2. Making our Nation Safer

a). Implementing the recommendations of the 9/11 commission

3. Making our Economy Fairer

a). Raising the Federal Minimum Wage
b). No new pay raises for Congress without a raise in the minimum wage

4. Making health care more affordable

a). Fixing the Medicare Prescription Drug Program by Negotiating Lower Prices
b). Promote Stem Cell Research

5. Broaden College Opportunity

a). Cut interest rates for student loans by half

6. Energize America for Energy Independence

a). Roll back subsidies for big oil companies

7. Guarantee a Dignified Retirement

a). Fight the attempt to privatize Social Security

That's seven planks with 10 action items. Step one for the "Democratic netroots framing brigades" should be to learn this list, critique it, and practice selling the hell out of it. Hell, we've been talking about framing the debate for years now. Here's some policy...we're all heading into the critical Turkey Day political melt down...let's do some work on Pay as You Go and Minimum Wage, let's move the ball on Lobbying Reform and Stem Cell Research. Let's examine what the specifics of the Oil Industry Subsidy roll backs will be.

I wrote a post-election diary on MyDD called Crafting the 60 percent position. The point of that essay was that we Democrats and our newly-minted majorities need to get focused on taking action and delivering the goods for this country on policy. Outrage and opposition won't cut it anymore. It's time to craft and win with majority positions. Let me be frank, I think we liberals and progressives have a lot to learn in this department. FDR knew how to craft majority positions, we should too.

Now, there are naturally debates within the Democratic Party and the netroots about strategy going forward. I've got some thoughts on that that I'll share below. But, before I dive into that I'd like to make this simple point. Everybody in the country knows that Speaker Pelosi and the Democratic Party have a 100 hours program. Shouldn't we all get behind it and talk about it a bit? 

The netroots and Pelosi's 100 Hours

The exact wording of these bills are still open for debate and amendment. Let's get involved. If we in the netroots are going to be more than ACTBlue ATMs for campaigns, we've got to have a hand in shaping and impacting policy.  

Here are two netroots-related programs we should push for inclusion as part of, or in addition to, the 100 Hours push.

1. The netroots should advance the effort to have legislation available to the public ahead of time enunciated at ReadtheBill.org. Imo, folks should contact Speaker-elect Pelosi and push for this great idea.
2. The netroots should insist that some aspect of net neutrality be a part or follow fast upon the 100 hours. We helped in the victory. There should be a netroots specific action as a part of or soon following the 100 hours.

Second, I want to address oversight and impeachment. We've had some cart and horse debates about impeachment here in the progressive netroots. I think most of us have come to a point where we all can respect that some folks have differing views. For myself, I am for oversight and investigation, period, end of sentence. I think advancing impeachment as a part of that now is a mistake. Coming out of those debates, however, I have one suggestion I'd like to make to those who think our highest priority in 2007 should be oversight and impeachment: focus on the Unitary Executive.

The Unitary Executive theory is the lynchpin of the Bush/Cheney defense of the legality of their actions, and is at the heart of their power grab in the balance of powers. With the Democrats controlling Congress, the Unitary Executive is now an active issue. We will see this debate play out in 2007 over and over again. What will signing statements mean? Is there a way to combat them? How will the executive branch respond to Congressional subpeonas and investigations? How will the Bush Administration respond to Congressional legislation on torture and rendition? My advice to the broad swath of the netroots that has focused on impeachement over the last years and months is this: focus on the Unitary Executive debate. That is where the action is and, I think, the best and most effective focus for anyone concerned with holding this administration accountable.

Finally, I'd like to address Iraq and the 100 Hours.

We all agree that this election was a referendum on Bush policy in Iraq. To say that the 100 hours does not address Iraq or military policy is both stating the obvious and no small thing. This is an issue. Let's talk about that.

In conversations with friends and dicussions online, I've found myself perplexed by a conundrum: American voters re-elected Bush in 2004 and gave the Democrats control of Congress in 2006. Given that, most folks I talk to over-estimate what Congress can do to change American policy in Iraq. The conundrum is this. The one zone that we all agree the 2006 elections were about is the one zone where the executive branch still maintains a very large degree of autonomy and control: foreign policy.

I have three ideas in this regard:

1. The voters wanted to put a check on the Bush Administration. Let's give it to them.

This will sound counter-intuitive, but I'll make the argument anyway.  We need to build the votes to override a Bush veto on Stem Cells in order to visibly show the country that this Congress is serious about providing a check to the power of the Bush Administration.  Beating a Bush veto on Stem Cells would send a strong message about Bush's ability to override the will of Congress, and the American people. That will impact how folks view Bush's mandate on Iraq. In effect, Congressional Democrats should use the Stem Cell veto battle to prime the pump for passage of a new Iraq war resolution expressing the will of Congress.

Any new resolution Democrats make regarding Iraq will only be taken seriously within a clear cut redefinition of Congressional power versus the Executive Branch. We should use Stem Cells to define that balance of power and then pass a resolution on Iraq.

2. Use the Purple Finger

Bush has talked ad nauseum about bringing Democracy to Iraq. It's time for the Democratic Party to use the power of the purple finger to implement a phased-withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

We need to craft a withdrawal plan that incorporates a vote by, and hence the implied cooperation of, the Iraqi people on that withdrawal. We should send a Congressional delegation to Iraq to coordinate with the Iraqi government so that this can be implemented. Whatever resolution we endorse should have a "purple finger" moment written into it. Congress must advance a plan that can be sealed with a "purple finger" vote in Iraq.  

3. Focus on our Troops

The Hundred Hour Plan does not have a focus on our troops. It should. This is the one aspect that I think we should demand that Pelosi add to the 100 hours.

We in the netroots should make clear to Speaker-elect Pelosi that the 100 Hour Plan, while it cannot come up with an "instant solution" in Iraq, should send a clear message of support and reform to every last American in uniform.

Whether it's body armor legislation, or reforming veteran's health benefits, or holding oversight hearings on how our National Guard and Reserves have been stretched to the limit, I would propose incorporating one defining moment to the first one hundred hours of the Democratic Congress: we should have a moment where we listen directly to our troops.

The first voices, the first feedback that the Democratic Congress should take in should be the feedback of veterans from Iraq. Perhaps this could be our first order of business at the 100 hour mark. We should give rank and file veterans center stage.  We should make it clear that we are listening to them. I think that would send the strongest message to this nation about what the Democratic Party's priorities are. The troops should be a front and center part of the 100 hours.

Tags: Nancy Pelosi, One Hundred Hours (all tags)

Comments

32 Comments

due diligence

I think that we should expect Democrats not to take things off the table, but do their job and focus on a process to ensure that we get the representative government we deserve.

That one simple step removes any questions of horse/cart.

by Bob Brigham 2006-11-21 07:35PM | 0 recs
Re: due diligence

the problem is that this isn't honest. when you say not take something off the table, that would make sense if some people, say on impeachment, had not already decided what the outcome on such an effort should be. there is a lot of feels that have been left unresolved for years. and the problem with this, is that it's good to make accusations but now that we are in control, it's time for process. something that the other side never understood, and I hopeful from what I am seeing- that the Dem leadership does get.

by bruh21 2006-11-22 08:39AM | 0 recs
Silly

The conventional wisdom from our lazy media and bloviating cable network talking heads says otherwise. Why, it wouldn't do to show the Democratic Party "plan" - that would conflict with the republican's, er, media's memes and talking points.

by Michael Bersin 2006-11-22 02:01AM | 0 recs
Where's your tip jar, yo?

Excellent post with very good ideas.

I'm sure we'll all be following up on this.

by teknofyl 2006-11-22 05:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

I really haven't been very sure if Pelosi was any good or not. Well I think the list is great. I am surprised that more people here are so unconcerned about net neutrality. We might not be here at all a year from now.

by blues 2006-11-22 06:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

Well, I've seen Jim Clyburn on teevee about 100 times, he hasn't mentioned it.

When they asked about the "big catfight" for leader,  our guys should have returned to the 100 hour plan, "why are you newsies only interested in fights", and why is the real impact of the election being disregarded by their insane childish obsessions.

Clyburn didn't do it. Surprize.

by zappatero 2006-11-22 06:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

I have seen other bits about Pelosi's plans to actually legislate aggressively before the SOTU.

These are very good signs.  Pelosi is not going to wait for Bush to set the agenda.  She'll have a pile of legislation on his desk already.

Apparently the Republican modus operanda is to just have some pro-forma sessions in early january to seat new members, pick committees and leadership and otherwise, wait for the president to tell them what to do.

Pelosi is evidently going to keep the first set of promises.  Let's force Bush to start vetoing extremely popular ideas, and have the GOP decide if they want to vote against it.

We may end up with veto-overrides more often than we expect.  That, or we'll end up with the public even more fed up with Republicans and in a place to take the white house and make congressional gains in 2008.

by scientician 2006-11-22 06:39AM | 0 recs
I don't think that it will be hard...

... to get votes to override a veto.

Tons of Publicans (hey if we're the 'Democrat' Party, I like the idea in Today's Post of truncating their monniker a bit) are itching to distance themselves from Bush.  Even if the WH didn't get the memo, several GOP congresscritters got the gist of it, and are looking for ways to split w/ GW that they can live with.  Min. Wage, Stem Cells and Veterans' Benefits fit the bill.

Get 'im to veto those first, them go back and see which GOP 'critters are looking to follow the old man into the abyss.  Personally, I think he could be mighty lonely in there if Congressional Dems do it right.

by teknofyl 2006-11-22 07:27AM | 0 recs
I left out the part

where Bush gets a littl emore cautious with the veto after that.

The GOP leadership would have to start whipping for potential veto votes before the veto could be enacted... this would be good and cause several bills to not be vetoed.

I think.

by teknofyl 2006-11-22 07:29AM | 0 recs
Days of Work

This is something I would like to see the Democrats add.  That they will require Congress to be in session 5 days a week, for XX weeks.  I'd like to say 50, so they could point out they are just like everyone else, but that would never fly.  How about adding 50 days to the the 109th Congress, make it 268 days.  

by Robert P 2006-11-22 06:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Days of Work

It would not only never fly, but it's a bad idea.  First off, if Congress were in session 5 days/week, 50 weeks/year, the members would never get to spend time in their districts.  Second, it would all but assure that our majority would be wiped out next time around, since our incumbent Dems couldn't campaign for reelection next year.

Expectations need to be tempered with realism.

by libdevil 2006-11-22 07:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Days of Work

It would make sense to four days a week, five hours a day, until the state of the union address. We must remember that modern Congress critters need to spend 90% of their time begging for donations from fat contributors. They should be required to spend ten days a month begging on PBS, I would say.

by blues 2006-11-22 06:50PM | 0 recs
A congressional pay cut should be enacted

The new Democratic congress should pass a law cutting congressional pay to the same level as the mean income (which in 2004 was $60,528) and permanently link it to that, so congress only does as well as the nationwide average.  If they want to get paid more, they need to work to improve the economy.  Hell, that should be amended to the Constitution.

by Sean Robertson 2006-11-22 06:57AM | 0 recs
Re: A congressional pay cut should be enacted

All you're doing there is asking for Congress to be even MORE limited to the independently wealthy.  Part of being in Congress is maintaining at least* two residences, one of which will be in a very expensive city.  The other one may be as well.  Congressmen are well paid, but they also have a lot of expenses that are part of the position.

*Some may legitimately have more.  One member I know of, for example, lives in a geographically large district.  His district office is near the center of that district, and he maintains a residence near that office, as well as his family home elsewhere in the district, and his Washington DC residence.  I wouldn't call this extravagant, given that two of those residences are maintained to facilitate his work on our behalf, but it certainly is expensive.

by libdevil 2006-11-22 07:58AM | 0 recs
Re: A congressional pay cut should be enacted

We cannot afford to not pay them very well. They need all the stimulus we can muster to get them to remember who they are supposedly working for. It is rather awkward to be giving them lavish health care benefits while the rest of us wait ten days in the waiting room (they are not called that for nothing). Until we have equal health care mandated for all US residents, we should really stop supporting medical research. Let the drug companies pay for that. We can no longer afford treatment or drugs anyway, so what do we care?

by blues 2006-11-22 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: A congressional pay cut should be enacted

Mean? Ha!

How about the median!

by js noble 2006-11-22 06:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

Terrific stuff.  I know DKos has ADD, but I think you should post this there as well.

BTW, I can rate posts but not recommend diaries--anyone else having this problem?

by alivingston 2006-11-22 07:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

good point.  

This WAS posted on dailykos mid-day yesterday, and while it received some 50 recommends it sank like a stone.

This is off-topic, but there are a couple things here.

First, that situation, in which a policy diary just can't quite make the recommended box, highlights the importance of posting and commenting and participating here.  MyDD is a very valuable place for national discussion on policy and legislation. It's great that one's arguments here have more than 60 minutes to be visible. (Thanks, Jonathan and Chris for the Bump, btw.)

Second, it points up a flaw that has crept into the dKos structure.  The recommended box has become the home to "MEGA-recommended" diaries: diaries with hundreds of recommends and growing. I know a bit about this, and I'd just say that I can predict fairly easily whether a piece will get into the box or not.  It can't just be a "good piece" or even a diary by a "known poster" (I am humbled regularly...lol.)

For a mid-day piece to get recommended it needs to knock a MEGA-recommended piece out of the box by becoming MEGA-recommended itself.  And quite often, that's just not going to happen without something extra.

Currently, diaries that achieve "MEGA-recommended" status need to have some other quality: controversy, social popularity, buzz, or even title-hype to win that spot.

That's, imo, what makes dkos so, as you say, ADD.  

SusanG and the diary rescue crew have worked tirelessly to combat this. I have nothing but praise for them. Their efforts mean that folks can post quality stuff and not feel totally heart sunk as it sinks off the page.

However, dKos will eventually have to figure out how to strike a balance. MEGA is more tabloid and more sensational...and that makes it rough on those who are writing about boring topics like, say...what legislation the Dems are going to put on the table in the first 100 hours.

by kid oakland 2006-11-22 08:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

Interesting thoughts.  

I pick through the DK recommends with more and more disappointment now, finding less food for the mind & spirit and more frequently running into those who have fallen in love with their own voices over the original love of their subject matter (always an occupational hazard I guess for those who write, but a definite loss for those who read).

I know Kos is tired of hearing the clamor for recommends by topic, and the prime time for that idea may already have sailed.  Much of the substance offered up is either ignored or quickly spread thin by clamorous chit chat diluting the topic.  The contrast in coverage of the SEIU victory on Mydd and DK was enlightening to me--I did a search of the diaries, and found the most prominent DK one overtaken by a discussion of the treatment of horses.

Anyway, I've missed your writing so I'm hoping to see you hang out around here in up coming days.

by alivingston 2006-11-22 10:48AM | 0 recs
actually...

I meant the SEIU struggle before the victory.

by alivingston 2006-11-22 12:47PM | 0 recs
Salesmanship and Lakoffian Narrative?

These planks are fairly clear and easy to state. To go meta on you, I'd like to see them framed better in the sense of how they fit into the Democratic Narrative, that is, "What we are about as Democrats, why our proposals will help you personally, and what you can do to help."

I'm a hierarchy-category sort of thinker. I can't remember details worth shit, so I need more of a power-point structure: 3 value statements, 3 planks, 3 details. Arrows tying things together, and don't forget the closing, now that they are persuaded.

For example,

The Democratic Party stands for working people and the middle class. That is why four main parts of our 100 hour plan address the middle-class squeeze of the past six years. We propose to:
 - increase the minimum wage by $2.10 to $7.25/hour for those on the lowest rungs of the ladder,
 - guarantee easier and more affordable access to health care by extending medicare to all children and youth below age 18, and making prescription drugs cheaper,
 - cut college loan interest in half, and
 - guarantee the solvency of social security by adding $100 Billion to the SS Trust fund in the next 2 years.
Please support Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats 100 hour plan by _____.

Salesmanship

There is still one thing missing in the way you present these 100 planks (parquet squares?). Persuasiveness means tying the benefit directly, concretely and explicitly to the individual.

The primary key to persuasion or closing a sale (i.e. getting someone's vote) is to realize that it is all about the benefit to the buyer, not the seller. Engineers and policy wonks are by nature and training very poor at sales because we get bogged down in talking about the features and details, things that the buyer is only partially interested in. Talking about features takes the focus away from what the buyer really cares about, which is what's in it for them.

One spectacular little book that can teach you be more persuasive is a slender little volume called "Soft Selling in a Hard World" by Jerry Vass. The value of this book is that it shows you how to become more skillful at identifying benefits to the "buyer" and how to tie them to what you are "selling", whether it is a used car, your next big idea to the boss, your next raise, or Pelosi's plank number 16 to your stupid brother-in-law over Thanksgiving dinner.

I've noticed that the emails I get from Move On are particularly good at making me feel the personal benefit of clicking on the extra $100 to make a difference.

by MetaData 2006-11-22 08:05AM | 0 recs
great point on selling

I think I've implied a "craft" the position and "they will come" approach.

I fully agree, however, with what you are saying.

by kid oakland 2006-11-22 10:17AM | 0 recs
MoveOn team is training others on their successes

A few former members of MoveOn actually "moved on" to create a new organization which helps progressive orgs to emulate the successes they've had. The group (New Organizing Institute) holds free / cheap trainings, and they're actually holding several right ("Rootscamps")now to allow to the roots to collaborate and share their innovations and best practices from the campaign front. I went to a previous conference they held, and it was pretty impressive.

by piersonr 2006-11-22 02:27PM | 0 recs
How to win an election.

I'm betting a reputation that I've taken considerable pains to build that people, given a choice, will choose what will cause the least pain. No majority that I've ever heard of has voted for personal sacrifice. It may have ended up that way, but they didn't vote for it to begin with.

No, they vote for those candidates who they think will cause them the least pain--either economic or social or emotional.

Clinton Shartelle in Ross Thomas's The Seersucker Whipsaw, 1967.

by stevehigh 2006-11-22 03:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

Why require Congress to sit in session for 280 days?  What an awful idea.  Too many people have the idea that unless Congress is passing laws, they aren't doing anything.  Sometimes it's good to NOT pass laws.  Get our big priorities done, oversee the government, and then go home.  Our legislature passes too many laws as it is.

by alhill 2006-11-22 08:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

The agenda for the first 100 hours is important, but before Pelosi does anything in the House she must demand absolute integrity from every member of the Democratic Caucus.  Her choices for Chamber and Committee leadership positions must be based on loyalty to the American people not to herself.  In this vein I submit this open letter to Congresswoman Pelosi:

An Open Letter to Congresswoman Pelosi,

Congratulations on your election to be Speaker and on the wider victory for the Democrats in the election on November 7th.  Now the leadership challenge begins.

I implore you to bring the Democratic Party together and to put public principals above personal loyalty.  This is what the American people voted for and we deserve nothing less.  

Choices for leadership positions within the House must be based on a strict adherence to ethical standards, unwavering integrity, and demonstrated leadership on the subject in question.  Political favors and personal loyalty have no place in these decisions.  Otherwise the Democrats will be no better than the lot the country just threw out on November 7th.  

You should be commended for the ambitious program you have set out for the fist 100 hours of the Democratic House.  Our country has suffered greatly over the last six years and we desperately need help.  A living wage, relief for the middle class, real security, and energy independence are all building blocks of a better America; however, the beneficial outcomes of such efforts are uncertain unless you adequately tackle the first item on the list--ethics reform.  

In order for the culture of corruption to truly change, integrity and public responsibility must permeate every facet of the institution and individuals need to be held to account.  The reforms must go beyond rule changes, gift restrictions, and earmark transparency.  Every individual must be held to the highest ethical standards.  Those not meeting these standards cannot be allowed in leadership positions, regardless of who they know or how long they have served.  This will not be possible without bold leadership on your part.  Lead by example!

The American people have given the Democratic Party an awesome responsibility.  We have charged you and your colleagues to lead us to a better America and your loyalty to us must come first.

Respectfully,

A proud Democrat and civilian serving with the U.S. Air Force in the U.K.

by MadHatter 2006-11-22 09:39AM | 0 recs
Impeachment and the Unitary Executive

The netroots impeachment movement is here:
http://impeachforchange.org

The centerpiece of our efforts is a 10-point petition for impeachment:
http://www.democrats.com/peoplesemailnet work/88

The Unitary Executive Theory is #9 on the list, below:

  • Iraq
  • Torture
  • Arbitrary detention
  • War crimes
  • Wiretapping
  • Signing statements
  • Stealing elections
  • Propaganda
and above
- Katrina/Global Warming

Naturally any effort to rank Bush's impeachable offenses is subjective.

We tried a more "objective" approach in our poll to set the 100-DAY agenda for Democrats.
http://democrats.com/change

Here are the last compiled results:
http://www.democrats.com/change-poll-res ults-1

  • Habeas Corpus
  • Minimum Wage
  • Impeachment
  • Iraq
  • Taxes

You're all welcome to take the poll and discuss the results at Democrats.com or here :)

by bob fertik 2006-11-22 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Impeachment and the Unitary Executive

Unfortunately, if we impeach (and convict) dubya, darth Cheney becomes president.

I have an "Impeach Bush" bumper sticker on my vehicle - this to point out, in my opinion, that he has committeed very serious impeachable offenses. And I'd like right wingnuts to explain to me why dubya shouldn't be impeached, especially since they (and their so-called "moderate" colleagues) were instrumental in seriously lowering the bar on impeachable offenses when they went after Bill Clinton.

I like Al Franken's take on impeachment. Increase the party majorities in the 2008 election - when the newer Congress takes over in January 2009 (and before the new president is sworn in) - go ahead and impeach dubya in that window of opportunity "because we can".

by Michael Bersin 2006-11-23 01:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Impeachment and the Unitary Executive

Kid Oakland's excellent essay included,


 I want to address oversight and impeachment. We've had some cart and horse debates about impeachment here in the progressive netroots. I think most of us have come to a point where we all can respect that some folks have differing views. For myself, I am for oversight and investigation, period, end of sentence. I think advancing impeachment as a part of that now is a mistake. Coming out of those debates, however, I have one suggestion I'd like to make to those who think our highest priority in 2007 should be oversight and impeachment: focus on the Unitary Executive.

The Unitary Executive theory is the lynchpin of the Bush/Cheney defense of the legality of their actions, and is at the heart of their power grab in the balance of powers. With the Democrats controlling Congress, the Unitary Executive is now an active issue. We will see this debate play out in 2007 over and over again. What will signing statements mean? Is there a way to combat them? How will the executive branch respond to Congressional subpeonas and investigations? How will the Bush Administration respond to Congressional legislation on torture and rendition? My advice to the broad swath of the netroots that has focused on impeachement over the last years and months is this: focus on the Unitary Executive debate. That is where the action is and, I think, the best and most effective focus for anyone concerned with holding this administration accountable.

This mostly hits the nail on the head, because Pelosi's 100 hours aren't going to matter more than a pitcher of warm spit if we don't deal with the signing statements issue, which is part of their Unitary Executive baloney.

What impeachment is really about is not revenge, or Bush-bashing, as fun as that might be, but it is about defending the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Rule of Law. The Unitary Executive baloney undermines the Constitution, destroys the balance of powers, and fundamentally alters the political landscape.

This means that impeachment is not merely about rehashing the past; it is about charting our future!

My thanks to Bob Fertik and his labors creating ImpeachforChange and nurturing the whole impeachment movement for at least the past year. And that brings me back to what the Netroots can do: We can remind Pelosi that she is our REPRESENTATIVE, not our Liege Lord, and as such it is up to US, not HER, to decide what's on the table or off it. But to achieve those goals, we need to unite and let her feel some grass roots heat.

Bob in HI

by Bob Schacht 2006-11-22 12:55PM | 0 recs
Pelosi and 2001 Session
I remember how in 2001 the Dems negotiated in good faith on a number of issues and got blind sided by a seemingly all powerful white house. I am very encouraged by the tactical sense that Pelosi is showing with the 100 hours (why has it not been compared to the Contract on America ?) and the working session in January to keep Bush off center prior to the Misstatement of the Union. If only she could get a note from her husband, I am sure she would get better press.
by msobel 2006-11-22 02:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Pelosi's 100 Hours

One huge item that's missing is to secure our democracy by insuring that all voting machines produce a paper trail.

This last election restored my faith in the collective intelligence of the American people to make the right choice. Without a verfiable vote count however the next election may again be stolen as were the last two presidential elections.( Presidential elections are easier to steal because they need focus on only one or two key states.'00/FL '04/OH respectively)

#1 Insure the people's voice is heard...Paper trail now!

Those who vote don't decide elections, those who count the votes decide elections
Joseph Stalin (paraphrase}

by sammy1 2006-11-22 02:21PM | 0 recs
Impeachment

Obviously, one would impeach and remove Cheney from office first, then you would do the same to Bush. Then Pelosi would be President.

by mdf1960 2006-11-23 07:53AM | 0 recs

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