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It's time for Cheney to resign

Fri, Mar 9th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

It is time for Dick Cheney to resign his post and stand down as vice president. He is not fit to serve as the second highest official in the land, a mere heartbeat away from the presidency.

The trial of Cheney's chief of staff Lewis "Scooter" Libby has shed further light on the role of the vice president in manipulating intelligence on Iraq and silencing critics of the administration.

Libby was convicted on Tuesday on two counts of perjury, one count of making false statements and one count of obstruction of justice.

The trial showed that Libby acted at the behest of Cheney in trying to discredit Joseph Wilson, a critic of the administration's efforts to invade Iraq, by outing his wife, Valerie Plame, a CIA operative. Wilson publicly contradicted the administration's claim that Saddam Hussein was trying to acquire nuclear capabilities from Niger.

While Libby was not convicted of leaking the name of Plame, he was convicted of covering up by lying to a grand jury and obstructing justice.

Libby, while certainly not innocent of crimes, is clearly the fall guy for the vice president and the administration. The trial showed that Cheney gave Libby precise instructions on talking points and which reporters to talk to.

"There is a cloud over what the vice president did," Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald said during the trial.

Cheney has run rough shod over a weak president in the White House. There are many who think we wouldn't be in Iraq today if not for the workings of the vice president. And over the last few years, who else stood up to defend wire tapping of citizen's phones and the torture of our enemies but Cheney.

Some will argue that Cheney is a patriot by doing whatever it takes to defeat those who would harm us.

I would argue otherwise. Cheney is a thug in the Slobodan Milosivic mold - willing to use his power to serve his own views and biases, believing that the end justifies the means, even if it means trying to smear another American in an effort to alter the truth.

Dick Cheney's actions have discredited the office of the vice president. It is time for him to step down.

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