Sunday, November 23, 2008

Murtha: Not a leg to stand on.

As has been chronicled on this blog time and time again, Congressman John Murtha threw his lot with the anti-war kook left as he threw Haditha Marine's Constitutional right to presumption of innocence out the window for reasons of cheap, political gain. Congressman Murtha mis-used the influence of his office in a manner, as John Kerry would say, reminiscent of Genghis Khahn as he ran roughshod over the Constitutional rights of those who so valiantly put their lives on the line to defend it.

Now that Murtha's chickenzzzz have come home to roost, Boss Murtha is claiming immunity, saying that he can't be sued because, according to him, he was actually doing his job when he was denying the Haditha Marines their right to due process and presumption of innocence.

Which led Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson to question:
“Who is his master?” Henderson asked. “Do you ever serve the interests of your constituents by making a derogatory comment to the media?”
Of course, the short answer to that is that Boss Murtha has never been about serving his constituents, but rather about weaving a web of quid pro quos designed for the sole purpose of keeping his big phat backside in PA-12's seat in Washington.

Make no mistake. Jack Murtha never does something without there being a whole lot of something there for-- Jack Murtha.

Jack Murtha is used to getting his way, by hook, or, by crook. But this time, Jack Murtha has spun himself a web from which there should be no escape. Christina Jeffrey, the historian for the 104th congress, asserts:
While Murtha wants us to believe talking to reporters is an activity covered by the Constitution's speech and debate clause, the Supreme Court doesn't agree.

In the 1979 decision Hutchinson v. Proxmire (443 U.S. 111), the court ruled against Sen. William Proxmire because this clause does not protect him when he is off the floor and transmitting information to the media in the form of a press release. Why should a verbal "press release" be any different?

The Herald-Journal makes the case, popular inside the Beltway, that members of Congress need immunity from lawsuits when conducting the people's business. (They also want to be free of lawsuits if they are in traffic accidents). Since they consider themselves to be conducting the people's business 24/7, we're creating a very privileged class - one that can run us over and defame us at will. However, if necessity were a legitimate defense, it's certainly undermined by changes in communication that have made it easy to amplify a million times every word a congressmen speaks on the floor of Congress. No, we don't need to relieve congressmen of the nicety of going down to the well to have their say. Constitutional forms remain important.

As Thomas Jefferson stated, "When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny."

Jeffrey expands:
The clear language of the Constitution with respect to the responsibility of legislators to live under the law has been articulated since Montesquieu and is enshrined in the English common law on which the Constitution is based.

President Madison, writing in the Federalist, warns us that if ever our legislators are exempt from law, freedom will be lost. The 104th Congress actually passed a congressional rule that Congress would henceforth abide by the law. Murtha should be punished for failing to do so.
There can be no argument made against the fact that a grave, purposeful injustice was perpetrated against citizens by a duly elected Constitutional officer by the name of John Murtha.

Murtha, again, is not a king, but is rather elected to serve the people and at the pleasure of the people; and, even according to his own governing body's rules, must not only be held accountable for acting in the best interests of those he serves, but to live under the same laws, as well.