This coming Tuesday, in San Francisco, the official canvass of the results of the November 7 election must be completed and those results will be certified.

On that day, this will be formal confirmation of the intentions of the voters of San Francisco.

Two of those intentions will be of particular, if conflicting, significance.

First, the voters will have reelected their representative to the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, who in January will become the Speaker of the House.

Second, the voters will have joined the citizens of several dozen other communities across the country in formally requesting that their congressional representatives take the necessary steps to impeach President Bush and Vice President Cheney.

“We call upon the United States House of Representatives to initiate an investigation into High Crimes and Misdemeanors committed by President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney and to submit Articles of Impeachment to the United States Senate,” declares Proposition J, a measure that was endorsed by almost 6O percent of the city’s electorate.

With the certification of the results, it becomes the policy of San Francisco that its congressional representatives should “immediately invoke every available legal mechanism to effect the impeachment and removal from office of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney for High Crimes and Misdemeanors under Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution of the United States of America.”

Pelosi is not taking the hint. In fact, she contintues to say, when asked, that “impeachment is off the table.”

It is of course, Pelosi’s right to refuse to implement the official policy of the city that elects her. No law, nor pattern of practice, requires members of Congress to actually represent the views of their constituents.

But in coming days, as activists across the country raise the issue of impeachment at rallies and forums nationwide, Pelosi may want to take a few minutes to review the official position of the community that has sent her to Congress.

That position states:

It is the Policy of the people of the City and County of San Francisco to call for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney for violating the public trust and for knowingly harming the United States of America, the State of California, and the City and County of San Francisco.

On November 2, 2004, the people of San Francisco passed Proposition N, asking the Federal government to “take immediate steps to end the U.S. occupation of Iraq and bring our troops safely home now,” citing President Bush’s lies to the American people in making the case for war in Iraq.

President George W. Bush abused his power by authorizing the National Security Agency and various other agencies within the intelligence community to conduct electronic surveillance outside of the statutes Congress prescribed as the exclusive means for such surveillance and concealed the existence of this unlawful program from Congress, the press, and the public.

President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney abused their power by arbitrarily detaining citizens and non-citizens indefinitely inside and outside of the United States, without due process, without charges and with limited – if any – access to counsel or courts. They have failed to faithfully execute the laws of the United States by allowing torture and failing to investigate and prosecute high-level officials responsible for torture.

President George W. Bush disregarded his Presidential duty when he and his appointed head of Federal Emergency Management Agency failed to quickly and adequately respond to a major disaster on United States soil, Hurricane Katrina, which killed at least 1,383 people in the Gulf Coast Region and left over 78,000 people homeless, and is guilty of gross incompetence or reckless indifference to his obligation to execute the laws faithfully.

President George W. Bush arrogated excessive power to the executive branch in violation of the basic constitutional principle of the separation of powers.

On February 28, 2006, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed a resolution calling for a “full investigation, impeachment or resignation of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney.”

We call upon the United States House of Representatives to initiate an investigation into High Crimes and Misdemeanors committed by President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney and to submit Articles of Impeachment to the United States Senate.

We call on the United States Senate, after trying any Impeachment, to remove President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney from office.

We call upon the Legislature of the State of California to transmit charges supporting impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney to the United States House of Representatives.

We generally call on our elected federal and state representatives to immediately invoke every available legal mechanism to effect the impeachment and removal from office of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney for High Crimes and Misdemeanors under Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution of the United States of America.

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John Nichols’ new book, THE GENIUS OF IMPEACHMENT: The Founders’ Cure for Royalism has been hailed by authors and historians Gore Vidal, Studs Terkel and Howard Zinn for its meticulous research into the intentions of the founders and embraced by activists for its groundbreaking arguments on behalf of presidential accountability. After reviewing recent books on impeachment, Rolling Stone political writer Tim Dickinson, writes in the latest issue of Mother Jones, “John Nichols’ nervy, acerbic, passionately argued history-cum-polemic, The Genius of Impeachment, stands apart. It concerns itself far less with the particulars of the legal case against Bush and Cheney, and instead combines a rich examination of the parliamentary roots and past use of the “heroic medicine” that is impeachment with a call for Democratic leaders to ‘reclaim and reuse the most vital tool handed to us by the founders for the defense of our most basic liberties.'”

The Genius of Impeachment can be found at independent bookstores and at www.amazon.com