Monday, October 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Witnesses announced for Kane impeachment hearing

A GOP lawmaker has released a list of those testifying at his controversial hearing Tuesday on the impeachment of Attorney General Kathleen Kane - and Kane is not among them..

Witnesses announced for Kane impeachment hearing

A GOP lawmaker has released a list of those testifying at his controversial hearing Tuesday on the impeachment of Attorney General Kathleen Kane - and Kane is not among them..

Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R., Butler), chairman of the state government committee is seeking to oust Kane, a Democrat, for what he describes as "misbehavior in office."

After failing to get support for a resolution of impeachment in the full House, Metcalfe scheduled a hearing on the matter in his committee, inviting several national conservative activists, the founder of a Pennsylvania law firm specializing in firearms-related cases and a partner in a Christian law firm in Lancaster.

Testifiers will include:

Michael Bekesha, attorney, Judicial Watch, Inc; Bekesha has litigated federal Freedom of Information Act cases and state open records act cases. He has testified before Metcalfe's committee in the past on Voter ID and immigration.

Joshua Prince, Esq., Firearms Industry Consulting Group. of Bechtelsville, advertises itself as specializing in representing the rights of gun owners in a variety of cases.

James N. Clymer, Esq., Clymer, Musser & Conrad, P.C.; a Lancaster-based law firm which describes itself as a firm whose "priority is service to people in need, provided in a way that is consistent with our attorneys’ commitment to Christ and His Kingdom."

J. Christian Adams, policy board of the American Civil Rights Union. worked at the U.S. Department of Justice under George W. Bush. Adams accused the agency of bias for its handling of the New Black Panther voter intimidation case at a Philadelphia polling station in 2008.

Metcalfe says Kane should be removed because of her decision not to defend the state's gay marriage ban and her controversial decision to shut down a sting investigation that had caught five Philadelphia Democrats, including four state lawmakers, on tape accepting money or gifts. 

He also objected to the Kane administration's decision to promote Kane's twin sister shortly after Kane took office in January of last year. Metcalfe said he didn't bother inviting Kane because he knew he would be turned down by her attorney.

Kane spokesman J.J. Abbott said last week the attorney general would have no comment on the proceeding.

There is no vote scheduled on Tuesday but if the Metcalfe resolution were to pass the state government committee the measure could then go to the full House. 

Meanwhile, the ranking Democrat on the committee urged Metcalfe to cancel the hearing scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in Room 50 of the Irvis State Office Building.

Rep. Mark Cohen of Philadelphia called it a partisan distraction.

"Most relevant to the current situation, we do not impeach for policy reasons," said Cohen, citing the only prior case in recent history, involving Supreme Court Justice Rolf Larson who was impeached in 1994 for violating judicial standards and ethics.

"Impeaching for policy reasons is not a good idea,There is a risk of endless conflict once the genie is out of the bottle. We really have better things to do with our limited time."

 

 

 

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About this blog

Commonwealth Confidential gives you regularly updated coverage of the state legislature, the governor and the workings of the state bureaucracy. It is written by Angela Couloumbis and Amy Worden in the Inquirer's Harrisburg bureau, based right in the statehouse, and by the newspaper's far-flung campaign reporters.



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