Ben Johnson, The White House Watch
Serious discussion of impeachment has reached the most influential publication in the United States. The New York Times recently featured a Bloggingheads discussion under the headline, “Libya and Impeachment.”
The 70-minute discussion pitted Glenn Greenwald of Salon.com against Ilya Somin of George Mason University Law School. (Somin also blogs at The Volokh Conspiracy.) Last month, Greenwald told Amy Goodman of “Democracy Now!” he believed Obama’s Libyan war is an impeachable offense. Somin has stated the Libyan war violates the Constitution. Although the conversation winds over such topics as the War Powers Resolution, the debt ceiling, and drug legalization, the first 40 percent of the video focuses on Libya. The impeachment talk begins at 25 minutes in.
Since this is a New York Times debate, it means the option is discarded out of hand. Both agree it is “the most extreme” remedy and argue it is not “practical, or even…desirable.” Besides, it “would cause more harm than good.”
Instead, the conservative, Somin, argues House Republicans should just authorize the war. “A less drastic measure would be for Congress to pass a resolution that does authorize a continuation of U.S. military force in Libya, at least for some time,” Somin said. As David Frum recently wrote on the debt ceiling, apparently the Beltway thinking is when Obama violates the Constitution, conservatives should just cave.
Some of us have another solution, which we wish would have gotten a more serious airing in the Old Gray Lady.