New Mexico Resolution-To-Impeach Debate Aborted In Senate

Gem Fire Air
New Mexico Resolution-To-Impeach Debate Aborted In Senate
marty kleva

March 10, 2007
permanent url

To lightly paraphrase, all things must come to an end—even good things.

The fate of SJR5, Resolution to Impeach George Bush and Dick Cheney, has been decided.
The people of New Mexico may have proved to be too eager, passionate, and awake for the Senate politicians who displayed their worst side by meekly refusing to step up to the mark and publicly debate SJR5.

As of Thursday, March 8, 2007, by a roll call vote of 26-13, the New Mexican Senate decided to not accept the Judiciary Committee’s report on SJR5 to be “read into” the Senate record, essentially not allowing SJR5 to be brought before the Senate Floor and open to public debate.

Reported behind this was the action taken the day before, Wednesday March 7, 2007 by Republican Senator Sharer. When in the course of otherwise mundane Senate business, and as the Judiciary Committee’s collective reports were brought forth for the usual approval to forward them into the record to be voted on another day, they were halted by a motion to separate SJR5 from the other numerous bills. This forced a preliminary vote.

Presiding President Pro Temp Ben Altamirano put it to a voice vote. As it happened, those who agreed with Senator Sharer’s motion were louder than those against. As to who was present, not present, asleep/awake, I couldn’t say as I was not in the gallery and there are no minutes of these proceedings.

The remainder of the Judiciary reports were passed to be read into the record, eventually to go before the Senate Floor. After the voice vote on Wednesday, SJR5 was ”pulled back” and “held over.”

Proponents of SJR5 were not aware that there would be any business brought up with SJR5 until it was placed into the Senate schedule for a Floor vote, expected Thursday at the earliest. In retrospect, it does not seem plausible that Senator Sherer acted alone; he was simply the one to act at the time. If he had not done so, others would have stepped in to fill the position.

Thursday, the next day, the challenge to accept the report from the Judiciary Committee on SJR5 was brought back up for consideration and put to a roll call vote. It was defeated 26-13.

The following 9 Democratic Senators joined with 17 Republican Senators and voted to not adopt SJR5 into the Senate record and not place it before the consideration of the entire Senate for debate. Out of the 6 Democratic members of the Senate Finance Committee, 4 of them sided with 17 of 18 Republicans.

Senators who voted to not to adopt SJR5 into the Senate record are:

> Ben Altamirano (D) Senate PresProTemp (voted for SJR5 in Rules Comm)

> Timothy Jennings (D) co-chair of Finance Comm
> John Arthur Smith (D) co-chair of Finance Comm
> Carlos Cisneros (D) vice-chair of Finance Comm
> Pete Campos (D) mbr of Finance Comm
> Phil Griego (D)
> John Pinto (D)
> James Taylor (D)
> David Ulibarri (D) (voted for SJR5 in Public Affairs Comm)

Senators who left the Floor & did not vote

> Joseph Carraro(R) mbr of Finance Comm

Senators with excused absence for the day
> Shannon Robinson (D)
> Linda Lopez (D)

Co-sponsor of SJR5 Senator John Grubesic in a press release eloquently stated:

“The action taken by the Senate was not the action taken by a body that protects the freedoms of a sovereign people. The action was a carefully orchestrated option designed to protect the integrity of an institution and perpetuate the well-oiled workings of government.

Our actions today showed where our priorities are, we forgot that the Constitution was not designed to serve government, but to protect the people. There should have been a debate, argument, uproar. Instead, we quietly gutted the sovereign power of the people with polite political procedure.

When future generations look back on our time, the shock will not be because of the violent, impolite nature of the fight that preceded the destruction of Constitutional government, but by the meekness with which we watched it die.”

In a democracy, when people have different opinions there is a map to use where all sides are given the opportunity to air their views. That is what the people of New Mexico have been asking for during this session; asking their representatives to bring forth SJR5 to the Senate floor to be debated in the public forum.

One can only conjecture that those who had anything to do with aborting SJR5 did not trust their arguments would survive the light of day in a public debate.

It is difficult to overlook the observation that 5 of the 9 Democrats who voted not to adopt the Judiciary’s report of SJR5 into the Senate record are members of the Financial Committee — minus Senators Bernadette M. Sanchez and Nancy Rodriguez.

There are numerous questions that come to mind regarding the ill-defined intent of the opposition to keep SJR5 from ever being officially entered into the record. Technically speaking
SJR5 did not get defeated. However, the bottom line is that the proposed bill SJR5 was defeated, just as it would be said if it had been defeated in any of the 3 assigned committees.

SJR5 may now be deceptively absent from the New Mexico Legislative record, but
since its inception, it has been recorded here at GemFireAir, at other sites, and on videotape in the three committee hearings. These documentations will withstand the test of time as fitting historical examples of the people’s fight for the preservation of the Constitution and our form of democracy.

The hundreds of New Mexicans present for each of the committee hearings, and the thousands of calls and letters to the legislature is proof that the people called for the “debate, argument, uproar” that Senator John Grubesic expressed in his press release, and the opportunity that he and Senator Gerald Ortiz y Pino created by the introduction of SJR5.

Instead, as Senator Grubesic says of his colleagues who aborted the democratic process, “we quietly gutted the sovereign power of the people with polite political procedure.”

Several members of the citizenry have been criticized for impolitely calling out in the March 5th Judicial Committee hearing during the 25 minutes that Republican Senator Adair lectured the citizens on how “wrong” they were for their views. He told the PEOPLE they were “wrong” five times — an average of once every five minutes.

Speaking from a professional position, Senator Adair may have appeared to be polite as he is well polished to carry off this persona. However, he misused his position of power when he continually censured and personally attacked the audience. He says he did not, yet in fact he spoke like an authoritarian father, castigating his teenage children in an imperious manner, continually firing the censorious word “wrong” toward the PEOPLE!

He held himself above us and talked down to us as he verbally attacked the previous testimony of the PEOPLE while categorizing and calling us names.

This is an example of arrogance by an elected official who has forgotten that the state legislature is the house of the PEOPLE and that he and his colleagues are there only at the behest and invitation of the PEOPLE!

The fight for public Congressional debate has just begun. There are many other states that throughout this and next year can and will bring forth another Impeachment Resolution. They can learn much from the forged process here in New Mexico. We wish them much success.

>>>>>May the People of Earth Know Peace <<<<<

Con Amore,

~ mek

Links to previous articles covering SJR5 beginning 1-26-07:

NM Lawmakers Launch Impeachment Resolution of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney

New Mexico Legislature Resolution to Impeach: Update & Reflections

New Mexico's Legislature & The Use of Asbestos Gloves: Update & Reflections

NM Legislature Deals Two ‘Green Chiles’ to SJR5!

New Mexico Senate Judiciary Passes Impeachment Resolution

Comments On Impeachment: by New Mexico Senate Committee member Senator Rod Adair


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New Mexico Senate Judiciary Passes Impeachment Resolution

Gem Fire Air
New Mexico Senate Judiciary Passes Impeachment Resolution

marty kleva

March 5, 2007
permanent url

Note: This is the fifth article covering SJR5 in the New Mexico Legislature.
Links to the first four are at the end of this article.

Today, March 5, 2007, by a vote of 5-1, the New Mexico Senate Judiciary Committee passed SJR5 – Resolution to Impeach George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

After a 3:45 PM start, a dozen other bills and over three hours of grueling testimony, SJR5 was finally brought to the attention of the Judiciary Committee by Chairman, Cisco McSorley.

Senators Ortiz y Pino and John Grubesic, resolution sponsors, introduced the expert testimony of Elizabeth Holtzman, former U.S. Representative from New York, and a key member of the House Judiciary Committee when it held impeachment hearings on the activities of Richard Nixon. She served in the U.S. House from 1973 to 1981 and later became Brooklyn’s district attorney.

In her testimony given on Friday to Senator Ortiz y Pino via video teleconference, Holtzman responded to concerns that Ortiz y Pino and others in the New Mexico Senate have about this resolution.

Holtzman fielded the following questions from Ortiz y Pino:

Ortiz y Pino: “What business is it of a state legislature to deal with impeachment?”

Holtzman: “The business of democracy is the business of every American.” Holtzman went on to say that the framers of the Constitution placed the power to remove a President from office in the hands of the Congress, the legislative branch of our government, and pointed out that this act places the ultimate power to remove an elected official from office in the hands of the people. She also reminded us that the impeachment proceeding against Richard Nixon did not begin by Congress until the people demanded it.

Ortiz y Pino: “Are we presuming guilt by calling for this?”

Holtzman: “I don’t believe so.” A resolution is drafted “asking Congress to investigate a grave problem.”

Ortiz y Pino: “Is criminal activity needed to impeach a President?”

Holtzman: “We’re not talking about a criminal offense.”
She stated that criminal activity is not required to impeach. However, if an elected official commits a “great and dangerous offense that subverts the Constitution”, then that is considered a high crime and misdemeanor.

Holtzman further stated that when George Bush fails to obey the law and to honor his oath of office, this constitutes subversion of the Constitution.

Ortiz y Pino: “Many say there is ‘so little time left’ in the Bush administration, let’s not waste our time on impeachment and allow them to finish out their term.”

Holtzman: Holztman broke this down into two sections. First she addressed, “Is there enough time?” She said, “There is enough time. Congress is not totally consumed with this.” There is a separate committee created to deal with the process of an investigation while the rest of the House goes on with other business.

Her second point here is the question of “Why bother?” To this she replied, "What check will there be on a President who has already lied?” How can we “allow him to leave without accountability?” To do so “leaves a shrunken, shriveled Constitution” which gives future Presidents permission to violate further laws. “If we don’t check it now, where do you check it?”

She closed saying that the Constitution and our form of government is not “just for past generations . . . . it is up to us too.”

So many of us, myself included, have in the past relied upon someone else to take the responsibility of watching the Flame of Freedom to make sure it does not go out. Too many of us rely solely upon elected officials to be the Keeper Of The Flame when that is our duty. We have abdicated that position to them for such a long time that we have almost forgotten how to protect that precious gift, and many of our officials have forgotten why it exists in the first place — to assure every citizen that they have certain rights under this form of government, rights which have been usurped by the recall of habeas corpus and the illegal wiretapping of thousands of Americans, just to name two.

After Holtzman’s testimony, there was forty minutes of public testimony and then discussion by the committee at which time Senator Rod Adair questioned Senators Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic as to the intent of the resolution. Senator Adair seemed to be having difficulty grasping that even though the resolution is named “Impeachment” and that the allegations of offenses are stated inside the resolution, that this does not imply a done deal.

Senator Adair spoke directly to the more than hundred citizens present for twenty-five minutes, calling to account specific points that citizens had made in their testimony. In essence, he does not believe that any actions of George W. Bush or Dick Cheney constitute an impeachable offense. He methodically went through every point of the resolution and basically said that none of them were true.

Adair said, “These people hate us.” I am not sure of who he was exactly referring to and although I might guess, I will not voice that here as I have not yet spoken to Senator Adair to ask him who he meant by that. He also said to the audience, “You will regret it. Weakness is not what these people respect.” Again who “these people” are, at this point, I can only surmise.

At 8:04 PM, when the committee vote was taken, Senators Grubesic, Lopez, Sanchez, Martinez, and McSorley voted in favor of SJR5. Senator Adair was the lone vote against, with Senators Craven, Paine, and Rainaldi not present for the vote.

Chairman, Senator McSorley commended the citizens present for the grace and dignity with which they/we have handled a difficult process, noting the long hours some have put in waiting for the Senate to schedule and meet.

This win in Judiciary is a stunning end to the three Senate committee hearings. The first two were won by one vote. The four-vote difference in the Judiciary Committee is nothing less than remarkable.

Next it must go to the Senate Floor to be voted upon by the entire Senate of which there are forty-two members. In order to pass the Senate, it needs to have twenty-two votes. There are twenty-four Democrats, but this is not a shoe-in with all the Democrats even though the impeachment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney was unanimously placed on the New Mexican Democratic Party Platform last summer.

We have heard that some Senators have had a difficult time dealing with citizen activists who tend to speak passionately about this issue. We can only say that it seems that the Senators and other legislators may have gotten too used to the smooth-talk of the paid lobbyists who are crawling all over the Roundhouse.

Citizens do not get paid to stand around and wait to talk with legislators, cannot afford to devote hours away from their jobs, and may not have the patience to withstand the frustration of showing up for a 1:30 PM committee session and be told at 6:00 PM that because the Senate is still in session on the floor, the committee hearing is postponed, and come back another day and maybe it will be heard then.

Lobbyists get paid for all of it. And the longer I am inside the Roundhouse, the clearer it becomes that the rules with which to interact with legislators has been written by the lobbyists. They have it down pat, and they have accustomed legislators to this manner by which they are approached.

When a citizen walks into the Roundhouse we are not handed an explanation of these unwritten rules, and presuming the right to speak our mind, we proceed to bungle through a rough-hewn version of the issue which the legislator takes offense to.

Most of us understand that it is politic to be polite, but when faced with the short amount of time available to talk with a legislator and not being privy to the fact that there are an untold number of ways to attain a legislator’s attention, the ordinary citizen is out of the loop. We just want to speak directly to the issue and do not have the training or salary paid to lobbyists to smooze our way through it.

The staff from Senator Ortiz y Pino’s office has been very helpful to the citizen activists involved in supporting this resolution. They have kindly informed and coached us as to what is acceptable behavior so that we may present a more friendly face to the senators, especially to those who are adamantly opposed to this resolution.

All told, it is amazing that this resolution has attained this point. With both absent mainstream coverage, and unfriendly reporting by local newspapers, this success is truly the result of the support of the hundreds of New Mexicans, some who have traveled great distances to attend the three hearings. The hundreds of citizen phone calls have been responsible for turning a no-vote to yes.

The courage of Senator Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic to sponsor this resolution, and of those Senators who have signed on and voted for it in committee, inspires the true sense of what the democratic process is all about. They have listened and heard the call of the people, and have worked tirelessly and with great expertise to bring this resolution through three committees, a feat which some said could not be accomplished.

With the leadership of these New Mexican Democrats, we can only say that there appears to be a high probability of this resolution becoming a reality-message to the U.S. Congress.

Stay tuned for the full Senate Vote — still to be scheduled.

Con Amore,

~ mek

Links to previous articles covering SJR5:

NM Lawmakers Launch Impeachment Resolution of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney

New Mexico Legislature Resolution to Impeach: Update & Reflections

New Mexico's Legislature & The Use of Asbestos Gloves: Update & Reflections

NM Legislature Deals Two ‘Green Chiles’ to SJR5!


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NM Legislature Deals Two ‘Green Chiles’ to SJR5!

Gem Fire Air
NM Legislature Deals Two ‘Green Chiles’ to SJR5!

marty kleva

February 25, 2007
permanent url

Note: This is the fourth article covering SJR5 in the New Mexico Legislature. Links to the first three are at the end of this article.

Today, Sunday February 25 2007, the New Mexico Senate Public Affairs Committee, after hearing an hour of public testimony advocating an open discussion on the floor of the U.S. Congress as to the possible impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney, voted a “Do-Pass” on SJR5 by a vote of 3-2.

This comes on the heels of The Senate Rules Committee also passing SJR5 on February 16th.

On both days, more than 150 citizens filled the committee chambers, overflowing an additional 60 and more into the halls outside.

They came from Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Embudo, Las Vegas, and Pax Christie. Speakers consisted of a former state representative, trial lawyers, a former CIA agent, a poet laureate, teachers, sociologists, a representative from Vets For Peace, and they ranged in age from the teens to seniors.

Some spoke of the logistics, the rule of law concerning the impeachment process.

Others spoke of the direct personal impact:

> a mother suffering the loss of her young adult son who has expatriated to survive his experience of the Bush Administration’s form of domestic tyranny.

> a young teenager saying that she had just read Orwell’s “1984” and that she feels as if she is living inside that science fiction novel.

> a man who spoke to the bottom line pointed out that SJR5 is not asking the senators to impeach GW and DC, but that to vote 'yes' was actually a vote for the democratic process to go forward and to force a public discussion in the U.S. Congress.

> several who said that to vote 'no' would be equal to censoring the freedom of a public discussion.

> a grandfather who wanted to fulfill his duty to his new granddaughter and leave the status of democracy in this country in a better place than it presently is.

Many spoke of the fact that George Bush and Dick Cheney have made mincemeat of the Constitution, and who like bill sponsors Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic, voiced the importance for the people of New Mexico to send the message to the U.S. Congress, and especially to future administrations that they cannot act with impunity. Ortiz y Pino also stressed that we should not allow the national Democrats in Congress to table this matter, as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has stated.

Today’s hearing for SJR5 was a close call, and kudos to Senator Dede Feldman, Chair of Public Affairs for successfully
bringing SJR5 to the final 3-2 victory while handling an attempt by the Republicans in committee to kill the bill.

Just for the record:

> Mary Jane Garcia (D) vice-chair was absent for the entire session.

> Steve Komadina (R) was also absent the entire session.

> present for the vote was chair, Dede Feldman, sponsor Ortiz y Pino, and Dave Ulibarri—all Dems, and Republicans Stuart Ingle and Steven Neville.

> in and out of the session, but not present for the vote were, Mary Kay Papen, (D) reported to be undecided, and Gay Kernan (R). Either Papen or Kernan voting ‘no’ would have killed SJR5.

> noted to be visiting the session was Senate Majority Leader, Michael Sanchez who sat in Mary Kay Papen’s chair, which she vacated about halfway through the testimony. Papen did not return until after the vote was taken.

Most importantly in both committee hearings, of the hundreds of people present, when the Chairperson called for anyone who wished to speak against SJR5, NO ONE came forth.

It is apparent that some senators have no true idea of what is an impeachable offense, they really don’t mind what George Bush and Dick Cheney are doing to the fabric of this country, and/or that they are in agreement with the tyrannical, non-democratic, and unconstitutional methods employed by these two present heads of state.

To use a procedural method as did Senator Stuart Ingle (R) to blatantly attempt to kill this bill after the overwhelming demonstration by the people to pass it, reveals the lowest form of integrity to an elected office. He either did not listen or he did not care what the people said.

In regards to this matter, one thing is very apparent. The people who do support SJR5 are not giving up. They see the unfairness of the fact that this bill has been assigned to three Senate Committees. Two at the most would have proven sufficient airing.

We have yet to get through the third senate committee, and wait to find out when that will be scheduled by the Judicial Committee. In some ways this could be the proof of the intent of Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez who also sits on the Judicial Committee and who is responsible for assigning the three-senate hearings. It is very significant that he sat in on today’s Public Affairs hearing of SJR5, and left after the vote was taken.

Here are the members of the Judicial Committee: Calls and letters are urgently suggested.

JUDICIARY: Monday, Wednesday & Friday - 2:30 p.m. (Room 321)

* Indicates this senator has already signed SJR5

> *Cisco McSorley-Chair (D) (505-986-4485)

> Richard C. Martinez-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4389)

> *John T.L. Grubesic (D) (505-986-4260)

> *Linda M. Lopez (D) (505-986-4737)

> Lidio G. Rainaldi (D) (505-986-4310)

> Michael S. Sanchez (D) Senate majority Leader (505-986-4727)

> William H. Payne (R)/Ranking Member (505-986-4276)

> Rod Adair (R) (505-986-4385)

> Kent L. Cravens (R) (505-986-4391)

> Clinton D. Harden (R) (505-4369)

If the Judicial Committee passes SJR5, then it goes to the floor of the Senate where there are 24 seated Democrats and where a majority vote is needed to pass SJR5 on to the House for additional committee assignments.

It appears to me that if it gets to the House, mass communiqués of letters and calls to the offices of House Speaker Ben Luhan (D) are needed to strongly encourage him to not assign SJR5 to three more committee hearings. One hearing will be sufficient. Any more is truly a hardship on the people of New Mexico who have faithfully come out to support SJR5 despite this year’s record-breaking winter weather.

If the Democrats in the Senate have not made it clear to their House partners that the people of New Mexico have spoken and shown up in overwhelming support of SJR5, then the House will just have to be inundated by the masses in irresistible numbers. Santa Feans will need to send the clear and unmistakable message to our representative Ben Luhan that we expect him to represent the people’s wishes in this matter.

Viva la SJR5!

We continue to thank the sponsors Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic, and all the Democratic senators who have signed on SJR5. We look forward to the Senate passing this by an overwhelming majority to the House and positively anticipate the House passing it as well.

Still in the Land of Enchantment!

Con Amore!

~ mek


>#1- NM Lawmakers Launch Impeachment Resolution of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney

#2- New Mexico Legislature Resolution to Impeach: Update & Reflections

>#3- New Mexico's Legislature & The Use of Asbestos Gloves: Update & Reflections


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New Mexico Legislature Resolution to Impeach: Update & Reflections

Gem Fire Air
New Mexico Legislature Resolution to Impeach:
Update & Reflections
marty kleva

February 3, 2007
permanent url

When Senators Ortiz y Pino of Albuquerque and John Grubesic of Santa Fe, announced the introduction of (SJR5), a resolution calling for the Impeachment of George Bush and Dick Cheney at the press conference held in the Rotunda of the New Mexico State Roundhouse January 23, 2007, I was present.

Although the Roundhouse is in my neighborhood, I had always walked by it yet never walked in, a statement that also reflects my involvement in politics. As of January 23rd, that changed with my decision to become actively involved in this particular resolution.

I have signed many impeachment petitions, beginning back in 2001 and the passing of the first and most infamous Patriot Act. Politics has been something I felt comfortable studying, reading, and commenting about, as GemFireAir reflects, but I have always refrained from becoming more directly involved beyond that of calling my congressman, writing letters, and sending pertinent information via e-mail.

Here I am on January 23rd 2007, in the middle of the Rotunda beneath the dome of the NM State Roundhouse waiting for the press conference to begin, announcing the introduction of the resolution to impeach GW & DC. There are reporters here from every New Mexico newspaper, the Associated Press, as well as ABC and NBC cameras.

I look around and see about 100 others attending. Part of me is apprehensive for taking such a public step. But somewhere deep inside I know that I have reached my limit on being silent. Behind my apprehension is a subtle fear that I will place myself beneath the scrutiny of those who have come to be known as the American version of the Gestapo and possibly find myself on the no-fly list. So many others have been
arrested and jailed for peaceful protests; it can happen to any one of us.

It’s not comfortable living in the U.S. knowing that my phone conversations and e-mails are being monitored, and where cash is now viewed by the U.S. banking world as a four-letter word. Besides GW having trouble with the Constitution, there are judges who will not allow the word "Constitution" to even be spoken in their courtroom without the threat of 'contempt'. And now, law enforcement agencies have no need to knock on our door — they just kick it down and walk in.

What surprised me earlier as I walked up to the Roundhouse entrance, is that there were only two security people in evidence, both standing outside talking to each other and having a cigarette. There were no major security sacred portals to go through. I did not need to step out of my shoes, take everything out of my pockets, or relinquish my purse and personal belongings. I could walk wherever I chose and no one stopped to question me. Apparently I did not have the letter ‘T’ written on my forehead, and I walked around dazed from the relief I felt for once again being back in friendly territory.

Impeaching a President is not something I want to do, nor is it a position I prefer to hold. But there is this underlying force that has drawn me here to bear witness to the two senators who are stepping forward to introduce this resolution to impeach Bush and Cheney, as if by doing so I am once again affirming all those signatures I have previously made.

No one here looks like a terrorist, but rather they appear like any American I would meet on the street, like you and me. Some parents have brought their young children. In a conversation with the man who sits next to me I learn that he has come to speak as a citizen; his typed statement neatly inserted inside a blue folder.

The crowd waiting for the press conference to begin in the Rotunda is not boisterous or noisy; the prevailing atmosphere seems to contain a pervading sense of quiet determination. It is evident by the crowd’s subdued confidence, that few if any think that this issue is frivolous, or as the morning Albuquerque Journal stated, that Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic “ are hoping to make a national splash”, and which quoted Senate Minority Leader Stuart Ingle, R-Portales, as saying that the proposal is “a publicity stunt.” These kinds of remarks are usually made when there is an attempt to demean and belittle those who point out the truth.

It is distressing to be calling to question a father figure of such immense authority. The President holds the archetypal figure of the Father and Teacher. It is the position reminiscent of the Greek and Roman god Saturn, and astrologically, as head figure of government, the President symbolizes the sign of Capricorn, a sign ruled by Saturn.

But George W. Bush's astrological Sun, actually holds the position in Capricorn's opposition sign of Cancer, a sign that in its wisdom, stands for the home, nurturing and caring. This may add a clue to George's position, and why so many Americans and myself are feeling so abused, rather than nurtured. George may speak the words "care" and "compassion", but he does not have the capacity to actually carry them out.

This man has been given all the slack I have available. His psychological profile screams of parental abuse, which he has not dealt with. As a psychotherapist, I cannot further enable his emotional and physical abusiveness. Now, it seems to have come to this moment — one where I must stand for myself.

George Bush, who suffers not only from untreated psychological problems and alcohol abuse, but also from their denial, has turned my compassion for him into dispassionate observation, and further spurs me to take on the task to ensure my personal survival and those values created by the Constitution of the United States.

To the rest of us, George Bush looks like an adult, yet he acts like a greedy and pompously blustering teenager who still lives inside the emotional realm of a two year old having a temper tantrum. His conflicting emotions are so powerful, that he can only feel as if he exists by striking out to kill what he perceives and creates to be outer-world demons, blindly ignoring and denying the innocent who get in the way of the guns and troops which he commands. He may not have had the kind of parents to nurture his best points, but then, who has?

As the press conference begins with introductions, Senator Ortiz y Pino is received by the supporting crowd with thunderous applause. He introduces the resolution saying that detractors from impeaching the President insist that there are “too many other pressing issues” to tie up valuable time in the state legislature with this resolution. Ortiz y Pino believes there is “too much money going toward war and paranoia,” and that our “resources are being wasted in a horrible and bloody fashion.” He gets another thunderous applause.

Senator Grubesic follows and declares that the Constitution is a sacred document, a response to GW calling it “just a goddammed piece of paper.” Grubesic goes on to give his reasons for sponsoring this resolution saying that torture is wrong, as is the denial of a proper trial, and finally that “Silence is Betrayal.” Grubesic said that as Americans, "We need to send a clear message to the rest of the world that we're not as insane as our administration is."

After the senators speak, several citizens deliver their comments. Pat Leahan, head of the Peace & Justice Center of Las Vegas, NM speaks eloquently. Underlying her calm tone is the rumble of outrage that I also feel. When she asks the question, “Do the American people feel we should move forward with the impeachment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney?” the crowd responds with whistles and applause — she gets a standing ovation.

Before leaving, I stop by the information center, have a friendly chat with the people behind the desk, and pick up a copy of the names and phone #’s of all members of the legislature. By the time I get home, I decide to call Ortiz y Pino’s office to see what kind of reception I get.

Sharon, Senator Ortiz y Pino’s secretary is very helpful, and gives me the rundown on the status so far.
SJR5 has been assigned to three senate committees (Rules, Public Affairs, and Judiciary) and must successfully pass thru each one before the full Senate can vote upon it.

Today, now more than a week later,, the Rules Committee has full membership assigned, with Senator Altamirano, Senate President Pro Temp, replacing Senator Ortiz y Pino who has been re-assigned to vice-chair another committee. The Rules Committee, which has been entirely hampered by this situation, is finally scheduled to meet in full committee today, already two meetings behind many of the others.

According to those who have more political experience than me, the delay with the Rules Committee is not another attempt by the leadership to delay this resolution, but that it is the result of last week’s resignation of Senator Leonard Tsosie(D), and the subsequent need to reassign memberships with the naming of his successor. That appointment came yesterday when Gov. Bill Richardson named Lynda Lovejoy to replace Tsosie. Lovejoy is from the Navaho Nation and is the first Native American woman to sit in the New Mexico Senate. (further story on Lovejoy to come)

SJR5 having to pass through three Senate committees sounds ominous, yet this is not impossible for many reasons. All three Senate committees have a Democratic majority with at least five Dems assigned to each. Five ‘yea’ votes passes the bill on to the next committee. Members of the first committee are also members of the other two committees, and in several cases they are also the chair and/or vice chair of the next two committees.

This labyrinthine process is an example of how the state government works. There are issues with the fact that the Democratic Majority Leader Michael Sanchez assigned so many committees to this resolution, some saying that it is a death knell. Politics!

But keep in mind, that the issue of impeaching a sitting president being discussed seriously in a state legislature such as New Mexico is forcing the issue to the national forefront. Although I feel like a whirly-gig in a nor’easter, there is no effort wasted here. Last year the state legislatures of California, Minnesota, Illinois, and Vermont introduced similar initiatives, and this year, the state of New Jersey has a strong activist movement working to introduce and pass an impeachment measure as well. That makes six states with grass roots support.

There are reports that these measures by states such as New Mexico forces members of Congress to take seriously the increasingly-popular demand that the President and Vice President be held to account for misleading Congress over the Iraq war, and that this fact alone is leading the peace movement to join the impeachment movement.

CNN commentator Jack Cafferty has broken the national media’s code of silence on the impeachment movement as he favorably reported the New Mexico Resolution last week with a salvo aimed at Nancy Pelosi saying, "[Although] House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said impeachment is quote, 'off the table' not everybody is so sure about that,"

Presently Mrs. Pelosi, with her stance to keep impeachment an off-hands affairis, is a disappointment to many mid-term voters. One really must question her motives when her party was given a clear indictment not only to end the war, but to also begin impeachment hearings.

The majority of people favor opening this discussion as the latest Harris poll shows that 56% of Americans want this to happen. How much more of a majority is needed to press House Leader Pelosi to respond?

In conversation with several legislative aides who I will not name, even though the New Mexico State Democratic Party officially added this issue to their platform, many are playing the I-don’t-want-it—You-can-have-it-game, including Governor Bill Richardson (D) who is reported to be gearing himself up with a new coiffure and body to face the 2008 presidential election.

Today, I learned upon further investigation, that because SJR5 is a joint resolution, once it gets through the Senate committees, it must go to the House side, and that here it will most likely also be assigned to three committees! Those assignments will come from House Speaker Ben Luhan (D) of Santa Fe.

I bemoan that there is little time to accomplish this resolution, despite the fact that this is a sixty day session, and given that the very first committee it needs to pass is the Rules Committee which as I pointed out above, has already missed two meetings with full Dem members seated.

The following Senators have signed SJR5: Please call to thank them.

Gerald Ortiz y Pino (D) (505-986-4380) sponsor

John T.L. Grubesic-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4260) sponsor

Linda M. Lopez-Chair (D) (505-986-4737)

Dede Feldman (D) (505-986-4482)

Cisco McSorley (D) (505-986-4485)

Mary Jane M. Garcia-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4726)

Joseph J. Carraro (D) (505-986-4387)

Bernadette M. Sanchez (D) (505-986-4267)

Democratic members of the Rules, Public Affairs, and Judiciary Committee:

All but Senator Altamirano have signed on SJR5. Thank those who have signed on to SJR5 for their support and vote. Call Senator Altamirano’s office to register your opinion on this with his staff and encourage him to vote yes.

RULES: Meets Monday, Wednesday & Friday-8:00 a.m. (Room 321)

Linda M. Lopez-Chair (D) (505-986-4737)

John T.L. Grubesic-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4260)

Dede Feldman (D) (505-986-4482)

Cisco McSorley (D) (505-986-4485)

Ben Altamirano (D) (505-986-4733)

If Rules passes SJR5, it will go to the Public Affairs Committee:
Note replication of signers Senators Feldman, Ortiz y Pino and Garcia.

PUBLIC AFFAIRS: Tues-Thurs(Room 321) & Friday-2:30 p.m.(Room 303)

Dede Feldman-Chair (D) (505-986-4482)

Mary Jane M. Garcia-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4726)

Gerald Ortiz y Pino (D) (505-986-4380)

Mary Kay Papen (D) (505-986-4270)

David Ulibarri (D) (505-986-4260)

It may come to Judiciary at which time there needs to be an absolute vote here. Note replication of signers McSorley, Grubesic, Lopez.

JUDICIARY: Monday, Wednesday & Friday - 2:30 p.m. (Room 321)

Cisco McSorley-Chair (D) (505-986-4485)

Richard C. Martinez-Vice Chair (D) (505-986-4389)

John T.L. Grubesic (D) (505-986-4260)

Linda M. Lopez (D) (505-986-4737)

Lidio G. Rainaldi (D) (505-986-4310)

Michael S. Sanchez (D) Senate majority Leader (505-986-4727)

Website for the new Mexico Legislature for daily updates:

The one thing that is most evident to me is that this is merely a game of strategic positioning against the time factor. When I first got the list and saw that all three Senate committees have five Dems and four Republicans listed, I knew that this resolution could actually get passed. It is widely reported that non of the Republicans will vote for it, so that means it’s up to the Dems to do the job even though leadership has not made it easy to accomplish.

More than ever before, I understand that what you see is NOT what you get! How has this country ever survived such political illusions? It seems to be the case of: take five steps forward and six back because we forgot to say “Mother/Father, May I?”

The learning curve is steep, but after all this, if it does pass both Senate and House, reportedly this resolution does not need to go to the governor. We have until March 16th to accomplish this. Although my urge is to surge to the fore, another voice says lets take this one step at a time.

This morning’s latest news is, according to Rules Chair, Senator Linda Lopez’s office; the Impeachment resolution may likely come to a vote sometime next week.

That’s where we are at this time folks. I will be attending the committee meetings and reporting to you here on the outcome.

With the New Mexican Enchanting clear blue skies breaking through the winter doldrums, and with Punxsutawney Phil reporting an early Spring on Candlemas Day, I wish us all a peaceful solution to the world’s differences.

Con Amore,

~ mek


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NM Lawmakers Launch Impeachment Resolution of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney

Gem Fire Air
NM Lawmakers Launch Impeachment Resolution of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney
marty kleva

January 27, 2007
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Note: This is the first of a series of articles documenting the New Mexico State Legislation calling for the impeachment of Bush and Cheney that will be written until the end of the session March 16, 2007, or until the Resolution SJR5 is permanently tabled or defeated.

>>>> May Peace Be Known Across The World <<<<

In the history of the United States, and in the ultimate survival of the Bush Administration, January 23rd, 2007 could be a defining moment. It is the day that George Bush delivered his 6th State of The Union Address (SOTU) to the newly elected Democratic Majority Congress. It was also the first SOTU address delivered in this nation’s history with a woman, Nancy Pelosi, presiding as Speaker of The House.

Simultaneously, earlier in the day, in the state of New Mexico, Senators Ortiz y Pino of Albuquerque and John Grubesic of Santa Fe, announced that they had introduced a resolution to the New Mexico Forty-Eighth Session Legislature calling for the Impeachment of George Bush and Dick Cheney, named: (SJR5) Impeachment of George Bush.

The issue of impeaching George Bush has been almost as old as this administration has been in office. To my knowledge, soon after the Patriot Act was passed, one of the first movements calling for GW’s impeachment was born. Since then there has been a surge of various groups calling for impeachment, a surge of sentiment much different than that called for lately by George Bush when he announced his “new” policy on Iraq saying that he would be deploying “twenty thousand plus” more troops to the Middle East in a “surge” to win this war — a war that has created more terror than it has rhetorically declared itself against.

In a new Congress that has been clearly given a mandate to end the war in Iraq, where Republicans have lost the overwhelming majority they formerly held on this issue alone, one might think that the call for impeachment would be one of the priorities of this new Congress. One of the main complaints by the Democratic Party about the former Republican majority is that there was no oversight of the Bush Administration. The Dems now have that majority and hold the leadership positions in committees and the power to begin Impeachment hearings. Yet we hear the Democratic House Leader say that impeachment is a tabled issue.

All this in the face of the latest Newsweek and USA Gallup Poll showing that at least 51% of Americans favor the Impeachment of George W. Bush, while a 1-3-07 Harris Poll shows 56% of Americans want impeachment investigations carried on.

One has to wonder how much more evidence this administration must accumulate to its record of violating the law to convince this Congress that the topic of the Impeachment of George W. Bush is in the forefront of American minds rather than being on the back burner.

Perhaps what is simultaneously overwhelming is the appalling reality that it will be a nasty job to undertake, and these national politicians are not up to creating a wave in their mutually supported corporate waterbed. So goes the feasibility for a two-party system — right down the drain.
And so, the onus must once again fall to the people to pick up the reins of Democracy and hold the Congressional cold feet to the fire.

Enter, a groundswell from New Mexico that began convincing Senators Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic to introduce SJR5 Impeachment of George Bush to the state legislature that can force this issue to the floor of the U.S. Congress.

In the ultimate wisdom of the creators of this country, Thomas Jefferson wrote out a manual containing rules of law that allows a state legislature to bring forth a resolution of impeachment to the federal Congress.

To date several other states have also introduced such a resolution, but failed to pass it. As announced on January 23rd, New Mexico has begun such proceedings. The process will take place over the next several weeks having to move through the Rules, Public Affairs, and Judiciary Committee, before it can ultimately be voted upon by the entire legislature. This legislative session ends sometime in March and such a challenge to move a bill through 3 committees is not considered favorable.

New Mexico’s resolution has drawn nationwide attention and is reported by such influential Internet media as, Huffington,, and

At first glance, this may appear to be a national Congressional issue and many mistakenly dismiss it as such, but in fact it is the people of the entire nation that have a stake here, each one of us as citizens has a Constitutional duty to perform — to be informed of what has occurred, to know what constitutes an impeachable offense, and to learn the definition of high crimes and misdemeanors.

As a New Mexican myself, I believe that all Americans can also consider themselves to be New Mexicans by proxy and call the Senators of the NM Legislature and encourage them to support this Resolution “(SJR5) Impeachment of George Bush”, and to urge them to do all they can to move this bill through the three committees. There is a very easy to manage website designed especially for this session that lists the phone numbers and websites of all the Senators. Write to them or call them to voice your concerns and opinion on this matter.

The resolution, SJR5 Impeachment of George Bush, has five main charges warranting the impeachment and removal from office of George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney:

WHEREAS, George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney conspired with others to defraud the United States of America by intentionally misleading congress and the public regarding the threat from Iraq in order to justify a war in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 371; and

WHEREAS, George W. Bush has admitted to ordering the national security agency to conduct electronic surveillance of American civilians without seeking warrants from the foreign intelligence surveillance court of review, duly constituted by congress in 1978, in violation of Title 50 United States Code, Section 1805; and

WHEREAS, George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney conspired to commit the torture of prisoners in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Chapter 113C, the United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and the Geneva Conventions, which under Article VI of the United States constitution are part of the "supreme Law of the Land"; and

WHEREAS, George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney acted to strip American citizens of their constitutional rights by ordering indefinite detention without access to legal counsel, without charge and without the opportunity to appear before a civil judicial officer to challenge the detention, based solely on the discretionary designation by the president of a United States citizen as an "enemy combatant", all in subversion of law; and

WHEREAS, in all of this, George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney have acted in a manner contrary to their trust as president and vice president, subverting constitutional government to the great prejudice of the cause of law and justice and to the manifest injury of the people of New Mexico and of the United States of America; and

WHEREAS, petitions from the country at large may be presented by the speaker of the United States house of representatives, according to Clause 3 of House Rule XII; and

WHEREAS, Section 603 of Thomas Jefferson's Manual on Parliamentary Practice and of the Rules of the United States House of Representatives states that impeachment may be set in motion by charges transmitted from the legislature of a state;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney, by such conduct, warrant impeachment and trial and removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the New Mexico congressional delegation be requested to cause to be instituted in the congress of the United States proper proceedings for the investigation of the activities of George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney, to the end that they may be impeached and removed from their offices; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the secretary of state be instructed to certify and transmit to the speaker of the United States house of representatives and the clerk of the United States house of representatives, under the great seal of the state of New Mexico, a copy of this resolution and its adoption by the legislature of the state of New Mexico. The copies shall be marked with the word "Petition" at the top of the document and contain the original authorizing signature of the secretary of state.

As has been reported here before, one of the gravest and most unconscionable acts this administration has done is to deliberately mislead the country and Congress along with the rest of the world to believe that Sadaam Hussein had WMD’s. Over and over this accusation was intentionally backed up with manufactured and doctored evidence. Our supposed statesmen cajoled and coerced Americans and Congress to believe it was true, and in the process they conveniently presented and forced The Patriot Act through Congress, an Act which stripped every American citizen of their long and hard-fought-for Constitutional Rights.

This administration introduced a wave of paranoid hysteria that has swept through this country like a hoard of locusts, stripping otherwise reasonable citizens of their ability to determine what is truly the greater threat to this country — that being the debasement and shredding of the Constitution of the United States.

Every time George Bush signs a law enacted through Congress, he also places his pen to a “signing statement” that in essence says, “I will follow this law, only when I want to.” It’s akin to swearing to something while placing his hands behind his back and crossing his fingers — a wonderful role model for children to emulate.

There has been much reported about George Bush’s belligerence, but the most offensive and unpardonable of these, reported to be corroborated by three GOP politicians, is the infamous November, 2005 meeting in the Oval Office with Republican Leaders of Congress, where the question of Constitutionality was brought up. Apparently George had it up to his ears hearing about how he couldn’t do what he wanted to, and he ranted in a tantrum saying about the Constitution, "Stop throwing the Constitution in my face! It's just a goddamned piece of paper!"

If so Mr. President, I ask you then what does your presidency stand on sir— your goddammed piece of paper?

What do you as Commander and Chief hold the military troops accountable for if not their oath to uphold the Constitution?

Why else are they in Iraq fighting and dying? Over 3000 Americans reported dead, thousands injured and maimed — tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians dead — all for your goddammed piece of Paper?

For all means and purposes, he might just as well have thrown the Constitution onto the floor and spit and stamped on it. What is more appalling is that there are no reports that anyone present in that meeting challenged him right then and there.

Further, are we all condemned to obsolescence when in his interminable use of double-speak he says, “America, it’s just an idea.”? Did he miss the 200 years of reality since the ratification of the Constitution?

Perhaps it is time for this ‘idea' to become a physical force to be dealt with.

New Mexicans are more than an idea; we are flesh and blood lovers of the Constitution; we are messengers of reason, the deliverers of justice, and the terminators of this madness to spread terror by such abominable means.

Destroying the Constitution by waging wars of deceit and lies are nothing less than the outcome of a Bushite temper tantrum. Instead we should be using diplomatic means to promote peaceful co-existence with those who choose to live differently from us. Do we have any statesmen left in this country? Certainly, Condi Rice and those who represent us diplomatically seem to be more like common thugs with little understanding or desire to act within of a code of diplomatic ethics.

This country’s survival hangs by a precarious thread — a thread nevertheless that is made up of the people who when we come together across party lines, can pull us through this most decadent period in our history.

It is time to send a second message to Congress and to any future presidents, that the people of America are not ruled by a monarchy, nor do we support a fascist state. It is time to tell Congress that we hold them accountable to uphold the Constitution and investigate the criminal misconduct of GW Bush and Dick Cheney. GW Bush has it all upside down; not he, but the people are the Deciders, he is not above the law but must obey the rule of law just like everyone else, even if he thinks he has a private line to God.

What can be more important than this? To ignore that it has happened and think that we can survive the next two years with these two men in office is the most absurd, immature, and unrealistic patrimonial denial of duty for any politician to harbor. It smacks of a fear to do one’s duty — a cowardly resistance to accept an undeniable reality.

Every American is also a New Mexican. Call the New Mexico Senators to encourage them to support Senators Ortiz y Pino and Grubesic by voting to pass bill SJR5.

Send the unequivocal message to stand and deliver the Constitution back to this country’s people!

In the service of the Exploration of Peace, I bid you all hayam’ (love that wanders the earth).

Con Amore,

~ mek

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<


>Constitutional Basis for Impeachment:

>Grounds for Impeachment:

>Proposed Articles of Impeachment:

>What are Impeachable Offenses?:

>Rules and Laws Relating to Bush Impeachment (Jefferson Manual):

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