In probably her final legislative act in Congress, outgoing Georgia Rep. Cynthia McKinney has introduced a bill to impeach President George W. Bush.
The legislation from the Democratic congresswoman has no chance of passage and serves as a symbolic parting shot not only at Bush but also at Democratic leaders. Incoming House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi has made clear that she will not entertain proposals to sanction Bush and has warned the liberal wing of her party against making political hay of impeachment.
McKinney, who drew national headlines in March when she struck a Capitol police officer, has long insisted that Bush was never elected legitimately. In introducing her legislation in the final hours of the current Congress, she said Bush had violated his oath of office to defend the Constitution and the nation’s laws.
McKinney has made no secret of her frustration with Democratic leaders since voters ousted her from office in the Democratic primary three months ago. In a speech Monday at George Washington University, she accused party leaders of kowtowing to Republicans on the war in Iraq and on military mistreatment of prisoners.
McKinney, who has not discussed her plans, has increasingly embraced her image as a controversial figure.
She has hosted numerous panels on Sept. 11, 2001, conspiracy theories and suggested that Bush had knowledge of the terror attacks beforehand but kept quiet about it to allow friends to profit from the aftermath. She introduced legislation to establish a permanent collection of rapper Tupac Shakur’s recordings at the National Archives and asking for a federal investigation into his 1996 killing.
It was her scuffle with a Capitol police officer that drew the most attention. McKinney struck the officer when he tried to stop her from entering a congressional office building. The officer did not recognize McKinney, who was not wearing her member lapel pin.
A grand jury in Washington refused to indict McKinney, but she eventually apologized before the House.