Clearing the record
A headline in yesterday’s Inquirer about two candidates running in the Eighth Congressional District should have said it was a U.S. House race. Also, the headline should not have said Patrick Murphy opposed impeachment proceedings against President Bush. He said he wanted to review a report by U.S. Rep. John Conyers Jr. before deciding. The candidate forum, sponsored by the Coalition for Peace Action, took place in Quakertown.
Andy Warren, the Republican-turned-Democrat running for Congress, says President Bush should be subjected to impeachment hearings over the Iraq war.
“If I were in Congress today, and if there was a vote on the floor based on the Conyers report, I’d support it,” Warren said yesterday, referring to a document issued by U.S. Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D. Mich.)
“I believe that there is enough in that report to begin the process of impeachment hearings.”
Conyers contends that Bush misled Congress and the public about the reasons to go to war and manipulated intelligence information. He has called on Congress to create a committee to investigate possible impeachable offenses.
Warren’s opponent in the May primary for the Eighth Congressional District, Iraq war veteran Patrick Murphy, said he wasn’t ready to take that step. Murphy, a lawyer and former prosecutor, said he wants to review Conyers’ report before making a decision.
The issue arose Tuesday night in Quakertown at a forum sponsored by the Coalition for Peace Action.
After speaking for 20 minutes each, the candidates fielded written questions from the audience. When the question arose on whether they would support efforts to impeach President Bush based on his actions during and leading up to the Iraq war, Warren quickly answered, “Yes.”
Murphy said he would not want the issue to be used as a “political ploy.” But if the facts justified it, he would endorse hearings.
“I want to have all my facts straight,” said Murphy, 32, who is endorsed by the Bucks County Democratic Committee.
Warren, 62, a four-term Bucks County commissioner and former regional Pennsylvania Department of Transportation executive, changed his registration last year from Republican to Democrat. That had nothing to do with his stance on the impeachment probe, he said yesterday.
“I’ve been an American longer than I’ve been either a Republican or Democrat,” he said. “And I think the Constitution was written for all Americans.”
The winner of the Democratic primary will face Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick (R., Pa.) in November. The Eighth Congressional District includes Bucks County and small portions of eastern Montgomery County and Northeast Philadelphia.