October 17, 2012
A brilliant song about Governor Fitial by an unknown author sent by BK. Listen!
The impeachment vote took place at 8:22PM. As predicted, the impeachment resolution was defeated as majority members voted to maintain corruption and the status quo. The Marianas Variety reports that the legislators voting in favor of impeachment were: House Minority Leader Joseph P. Deleon Guerrero, Reps. Janet U. Maratita, Reps. Ray N. Yumul, Francisco S. Dela Cruz, Trenton B. Conner, Ramon A. Tebuteb, Rafael S. Demapan, Tony P. Sablan and Edmund S. Villagomez.
The Fitial supporters who voted no to impeachment and yes to Fitial's failed, corrupt leadership were: Speaker Eli D. Cabrera, Vice Speaker Felicidad T. Ogumoro, House Floor Leader George N. Camacho, Reps. Stanley T. Torres, Ramon S. Basa, Teresita A. Santos, Raymond S. Demapan, Joseph M. Palacios, Sylvestre I. Iguel and Fredrick P. Deleon Guerrero.
Bravo for the pro-impeachment legislators who exposed to the world the unethical and illegal activities of Governor Fitial and his thug squad. It is up to the federal government to act now and prosecute those who broke the law. It is up to the CNMI people to vote out the legislators who closed their eyes to justice to support their own political gain at the expense of the CNMI people.
After ten days of testimony, one thing is very clear. Governor Fitial must be impeached. No witness testified in defense of the governor. Those involved with his corrupt or illegal schemes invoked their Fifth Amendment rights, strengthening the case their own and the governor's guilt.
KSPN reported that subpoenaed phone records prove that Governor Fitial, fugitive Edward Buckingham, the governor's DPS wheelman, Jermaine Nekaifes and Deputy Commissioner Ambrosio Ogumoro made numerous phone calls to and from each other on the night and early morning hours of August 3rd and August 4th, the day Buckingham fled the CNMI.
No honest legislator could review the evidence of the hearings, listen to the testimonies and conclude that the governor should not be impeached. Clearly, those who vote no to impeachment are loyal to Fitial rather than to the people that they were elected to serve. Those who vote no will likely receive a no vote for their re-election in November.
While the minority members of the Impeachment Committee supported an extension of the proceeding to review evidence and prepare a report, Fitial loyalist Speaker Eli Cabrera insisted on a 2:00 session to vote and refused to grant an extension. Cabrera claimed that the committee had had enough time, but at the same time he allowed House members loyal to Fitial (Reps. Felicidad Ogumoro, Stanley Torres) to call back witnesses, including members of the DPS thug-squad past the 30-day time limit.
It was reported that Governor Fitial was holding regular strategy and campaign meetings, like the one held on government time at Poon's Restaurant that violated CNMI ethic laws. The intent was to urge supporters to attend the Wednesday session to show support for the governor against impeachment.
Speaker Cabrera and other majority House members met with the governor in his private conference room before he announced that there would be no extension. House rules allow 60 days to consider recommendations and write reports.
Special Committee on Impeachment chair, Rep. Joe Deleon Guerrero expressed dismay with the speaker's refusal to extend the sessions. He said that the committee "was set up for failure."
The Saipan Tribune quoted Deleon Guerrero:
“I can only conclude that this is an attempt to prevent the materials from being put on the floor to prevent each member from being able to objectively review and make a decision. I think it is in the governor's interest not to have these materials appear before the members because it would be very hard for the members to vote 'no' on each article if they were to base their decisions on the materials before them so yes, anyone, any reasonable person, would come to that conclusion.”Fourteen votes are required of the 20-member House and six votes in the Senate to impeach the governor.
The impeachment hearings were still going on late into the afternoon today.
According to the Marianas Variety pro-impeachment advocate Glen Hunter testified around 4:00PM in favor of impeachment. While in the session someone slashed the right tires of his vehicle which was parked in the Legislative parking lot. How disgusting. (The MV website has not worked for a day. It was either hacked or has technical problems. I cannot even copy a link or read an entire story.)
It is unlikely that the Fitial puppets would vote to impeach their master. It will be up to the CNMI voters to vote out of office every legislator who votes no to impeachment. Anyone who would have the audacity to vote no to impeachment with such an overwhelming amount of evidence to support the 16 articles of impeachment is a self-serving politician who is ignoring the truth, supporting corruption and refusing to restore democracy to the CNMI.