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Koretz Impeachment Resolution Passes First Hurdle

Koretz Impeachment Resolution Passes First Hurdle

Sacramento -- Legislation by Assemblyman Paul Koretz (D-West Hollywood) calling for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard Cheney advanced Thursday when the California Assembly Rules Committee voted 4 to 3 to have the issue referred to the Committee for further consideration.

While the vote is considered procedural in nature, this action enables the language on impeachment to be amended into Assembly Joint Resolution 39 (AJR 39), replacing the prior language, which had been unrelated to the impeachment topic. The resolution had been initially proposed on April 21, when Koretz submitted language to amend AJR 39.

"It is great news that the resolution is moving forward," said Koretz. "The American public is increasingly angry and concerned about the misdeeds and failures of the Bush administration. Just look at the current headline about how they approved the secret collection of phone records of millions of ordinary Americans. This is a horrific abuse of our civil liberties, yet it’s the kind of thing that seems to happen all the time under this administration. We need a leveling with the public, we need accountability, and we need dramatic change – and right now, the impeachment process seems to be the most appropriate way to achieve all three."

The impeachment resolution references Section 603 of Jefferson’s Manual of the Rules of the United States House of Representatives, which allows federal impeachment proceedings to be initiated by joint resolution of a state legislature.

The key reasons cited for impeachment include the Bush Administration intentionally misleading the Congress and the American people regarding the threat from Iraq; exceeding constitutional authority to wage war by invading Iraq; exceeding constitutional authority by Federalizing the National Guard; conspiring to torture prisoners in violation of the "Federal Torture Act" and indicating intent to continue such actions; spying on American citizens in violation of the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act; leaking and covering up the leak of the identity of Valerie Plame Wilson, and holding American citizens without charge or trial.

Joining Koretz in support of the Resolution are: Assemblyman Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) as a joint author and Assemblymembers Rudy Bermudez (D-Norwalk), Ron Calderon (D-Montebello), Jackie Goldberg (D-Los Angeles), Loni Hancock (D-Berkeley), Jerome Horton (D-Inglewood) and Mark Ridley-Thomas (D-Los Angeles) as co-authors.

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