A motion to censure the President, however, might be the right tool to cut through the clutter. It would make a simple declaration -- that even if Bush has the technical right to commute Scooter's sentence, in the view of the Congress, he has sent the most corrupting message a president can possibly send to his administration ('If you break the law while working for me, I'll make sure you never spend a day in jail'), and it was morally wrong for him to do it.
It's a message that needs to be sent for future generations, so that Dubya's pseudo-pardon isn't treated as an accepted precedent. On a practical basis, it begins to lay out a public case for a possible impeachment. And on a purely political level, it would firmly establish Bush and his apologists (including the craven supplicants campaigning for the 2008 Republican nomination) on the wrong side of a clear moral divide -- an absolutely essential step in debunking the essential GOP mythology of firm, paternal rectitude.
Sunday, July 8, 2007