Dick Cheney to attend torch ceremony in SF?

No, just kidding. But that’s what I think of whenever something is moved to “an undisclosed location.” The latest from the Associated Press:

SAN FRANCISCO _ Officials say the planned closing ceremony for the Olympic torch at the San Francisco Bay waterfront is canceled and another one will take place at an undisclosed location.

The ceremony had been slated to take place Wednesday at Justin Herman Plaza, where thousands had gathered to support and protest the Beijing-bound flame’s visit to the city.

Just before the relay began, the torch was rerouted about a mile away from the demonstrators and spectators. Officials say they changed the path because of security concerns.

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom tells The Associated Press that a closing ceremony will still take place, but he would not specify where.

So what was intended as a public celebration glorifying China’s hosting of the Olympic Games was reduced to a pell-mell, cat-and-mouse pursuit ending at a secret site. China most certainly will not approve, but that’s democracy and free speech in action, folks.


GOP uses Kucinich’s impeachment bill as a WMD

Oy, what a headache!

As I reported Monday, Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, used personal privilege today to force his bill to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney to the House floor, despite House Democratic leaders’ wishes that it die a quiet death in committee.

As expected, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., moved to table the legislation without debate. As expected, co-sponsors Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, and Lynn Woolsey, D-Petaluma, voted against tabling it, as did Pete Stark, D-Fremont, and Mike Honda, D-San Jose.

George Miller, D-Martinez; Tom Lantos, D-San Mateo; Ellen Tauscher, D-Alamo; Jerry McNerney, D-Pleasanton; Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto; and Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, all sided with Hoyer, and by extension, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, who long ago said impeachment is off the table.

But, sensing an opportunity to embarass Pelosi and Hoyer, scores of Republicans suddenly voted against tabling the measure — twice as many as the Democrats actually supporting Kucinich’s stance — in an attempt to force a floor debate on impeaching Cheney! Eager to avoid that, Hoyer then moved to refer the bill to the House Judiciary Committee; that vote passed 218-194, with ALL Bay Area Democrats in favor. Oh, to be a fly on the wall of the next Democratic caucus meeting…

The bill Kucinich brought forth today was basically the same as that which he’d introduced back in April, charging that Cheney lied to America about reasons for invading Iraq and now is doing the same with Iran. But because House Democrats couldn’t see eye to eye today, the bill brought them far more grief than it’ll ever bring Cheney.


Who’ll vote to impeach Cheney tomorrow?

Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, plans to force a floor vote tomorrow on his H.Res.333, the legislation he introduced in April to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney. The Democratic leadership blocked any hearings of the bill, but Kucinich will use his right of personal privilege to bring it forward anyway.

It will be met with a motion to table, so a vote against that motion will be a vote in favor of impeaching Cheney. Kucinich explained it a few weeks ago during a Southern California campaign stop:

(The impeachment talk starts about two minutes and 20 seconds in.)

If you want to chat with Kucinich about this, he’ll host a live, nationwide conference call about his impeachment effort starting at about 4:30 p.m. today; the call-in number is 641-715-3300, the access code is 324341#, and the call is open to all interested citizens.

Although an American Research Group poll this summer found more than half of Americans support Cheney’s impeachment, Kucinich’s measure is expected to fail by a wide margin without the blessing of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, and other Democratic leaders.

But the bill has 21 cosponsors, including Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, and Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Petaluma; watch for them to vote against tabling the bill. Who else will join them?