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Bob Barr Ready To Impeach Another President

Bob Barr

Bob Barr, who was one of the Members of Congress who led the charge to impeach President Clinton in 1997, is running for Congress in Georgia again and he appears to be ready to consider impeaching another President:

Bob Barr was endorsed by noted conspiracy theorist Alex Jones in an interview last week in which Barr pledges to try to impeach President Barack Obama if he returns to Congress.

Barr is competing in a heated GOP primary to replace Rep. Phil Gingrey. The Republican-turned-Libertarian-turned-Republican again is best known for being the engine behind President Bill Clinton’s impeachment in the 1990s.

Jones’ “Infowars” is a popular Internet radio show and website that fights things like fluoride in drinking water and claims the 9/11 attacks were an inside job.

Here’s the audio clip and transcript:

Jones: ”A lot of people died that went up against Clinton. A lot of airplanes blew up. A lot of people got shot in the head five times. And it does take backbone to try to impeach somebody when you’re going up against gangsters like this. And we’ve got to get rid of the Clinton mafia. And I think what you’re hinting at is if we put you back into Congress, you are going to start investigating bringing charges of impeachment up in the House?”

Barr: ”Alex, I was with some folks just recently and pulled out of a file in my office the House resolution, the House resolution that I introduced on November fifth of 1997 that was the very first official inquiry of impeachment filed against Bill Clinton and that was mine. And at the time I think I had 18 co-sponsors was all, in November of 1997. And what I did is I took that document, figuratively kind of dusted it off, added a little bit of language to it and darned if it doesn’t sound pretty good with Barack Obama’s name in there.”

Jones: ”Oh man. So I think it’s safe to say when you get back in Congress, the evidence is already there, you’re going to start looking at the inquiry to begin looking for co-sponsors for indicting the president in the House, and I guess he will be tried in the Senate?”

Barr: ”I think it really has come to that. It’s not something I like to say. When I left the House before after we impeached Clinton, you know, my hope was we wouldn’t have to go through that process again. But we do. Mr. President, you are not above the law. You cannot ignore the law. You cannot simply violate the law, violate the Constitution because from a policy standpoint you deem it appropriate to do so. We don’t operate that way in America, and you are not going to be permitted any longer to do that.”

Barr seemed to become a lot more sane in the years since he left Congress. During the time that he had left the GOP and ran as a Libertarian for President in 2008 he was pretty darn good on a wide ranging number of issues in fact. Now it seems like the decision to return to the GOP and an effort to win a seat in the south are causing him to go back to pandering to the far right wing of the GOP. And don’t even get me started about the whole decision to appear on a radio show hosted by a conspiracy touting lunatic like Alex Jones.

H/T: Dave Weigel

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Mark Ivey says:

    Grifters gotta grift…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  2. al-Ameda says:

    The GOP knows how to impeach a president – it’s what they do.

    They have the votes in The House right now, just as they did in the Clinton case. They can get it done now if they want too. I wouldn’t be surprised if House Republicans are cooling their heels until the 2014 mid-terms are safely wrapped up, and then they might very well take up impeachment. If they also take the Senate, then that’s a bonus for those guys.

    The House impeaches, the Senate does not convict – we’ve been there.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  3. Moosebreath says:

    Jon Chait called it before the 2010 election:

    “Hear me now and believe me later: If Republicans win and maintain control of the House of Representatives, they are going to impeach President Obama. They won’t do it right away. And they won’t succeed in removing Obama. (You need 67 Senate votes.) But if Obama wins a second term, the House will vote to impeach him before he leaves office.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  4. legion says:

    Bob Barr was endorsed by noted conspiracy theorist Alex Jones in an interview last week

    Well, that pretty much tells you everything you need to know in a nutshell…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  5. Pinky says:

    @Moosebreath: Reminds me of those predictions about the last couple of presidents refusing to leave office at the end of their second term, and pulling a coup – no one ever calls people on this kind of prediction. Thank God another kind of prediction about President Obama not making it though his terms hasn’t come true. We’ll see if people admit they were wrong about that too in 2017.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  6. Kylopod says:

    @al-Ameda:

    The House impeaches, the Senate does not convict – we’ve been there.

    Of course, from a legal and political standpoint it’s irrelevant whether Republicans have slightly more or slightly less than 50 Senators, since conviction requires two-thirds of the chamber. But I really wonder if there are Republican voters who believe–and if Republican pols will try to send the message–that a simple majority is all that is needed to remove Obama from office. It would fit well with those who were duped into believing that shutting the government down would itself directly cause Obamacare to be defunded.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  7. Franklin says:

    Barr is … best known for being the engine behind President Bill Clinton’s impeachment in the 1990s.

    Actually, he’s best known for eating cheese made from breastmilk in Borat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  8. al-Ameda says:

    @Kylopod:

    But I really wonder if there are Republican voters who believe–and if Republican pols will try to send the message–that a simple majority is all that is needed to remove Obama from office.

    Well according to the Crazification Factor, about 27% of the people can be counted on to believe almost anything. So yes it is not farfetched at all to think that at least 50% of Republican voters believe that a simple majority vote is sufficient to impeach and convict Obama. More to the point though, I think a majority of Republicans would like to impeach Obama … just because.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  9. Mikey says:

    @legion:

    Well, that pretty much tells you everything you need to know in a nutshell…

    When you’re talking about Alex Jones, it’s more than just the shell.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  10. josh says:

    I read and like Dave Weigel, but he regularly drops the lede. What was Barr going to impeach for? I get “ignoring the constitution, but is it NSA, IRS F & F, BENGHAZI (TM)? Inquiring conspiracy theorists want to know.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  11. gVOR08 says:

    @josh: Presidenting While Bla…well, you knew that. The House might as well go for a Bill of Impeachment. It’s not like they’re busy doing anything else.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  12. wr says:

    @gVOR08: “Presidenting While Bla…”

    While I’m sure that’s true for many Republicans, it’s not really fair to Barr, who did attempt to impeach a white president as well.

    For him, the crime is that Obama — like Clinton — is a president who belongs to a different party than he does.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  13. rudderpedals says:

    Bob’s all over the place but I think he looked at Goss, Gingrich and DeMint and figured another shot at representing fellow Georgians would pave the way to retirement freedom. Sic transit principles and all that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  14. josh says:

    @gVOR08, I actually 100% disagree it’s racial (for Barr and most others). It’s not that I don’t attribute entirely nefarious motives to those who irrationally attack Obama, it’s that that same animus will be as fully displayed when Hillary is president (as it was when Bill was president). There certainly are racists. But more than that, there is a hatred of a strawman version of Democrats. Bill and Hillary murdered Vince Foster, used the Ark State police to deal drugs, and Bill’s impeachment was not about sex. Obama knowingly and intentionally directed the IRS,NSA and DOJ in its various wrongdoings and is a neo-Kenyan anti-colonialist. Wash, rinse, repeat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  15. Matt Bernius says:

    Ok, as much as I like “wack-a-mole” let us not forget that a number of Democratic members of Congress, between 2000 and 2008, took a run at the windmill…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efforts_to_impeach_George_W._Bush

    As @Pinky correctly pointed out, there have been lots of predictions about what people will do that didn’t play out. As much as I appreciate Chait and others, one of the markers of political commentators is a certain level of cynicism. That may occasionally lead to apocalyptic predictions that never pan out.

    Granted, following Menkin, cynics tend to not lose money betting against how low things can go.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  16. al-Ameda says:

    @Matt Bernius:

    Ok, as much as I like “wack-a-mole” let us not forget that a number of Democratic members of Congress, between 2000 and 2008, took a run at the windmill…

    How surprising … “both sides do it” … again.
    And none of that “impeach Bush” stuff was the least bit serious, nor did it ever have political momentum or critical mass at all. Republicans on the other hand have demonstrated that they are serious about impeaching Democratic presidents. Do I think they will gin up to impeach Obama? Probably not – I place the odds at 27% yes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1