A petition posted online by an activist group tied to the leftist MoveOn.org is calling for the immediate arrest of key Republican Party leaders on Capitol Hill, alleging they’ve committed egregious acts of betrayal against the United States.
The text posted at MoveOn Petitions: “I call on the Justice Department of the United States of America to arrest Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Speaker of the House John Boehner and other decision-making House Republican leaders for the crimes of seditious conspiracy against the United States of America.”
Sedition is a tough crime to prove, given the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech. Nonetheless, the petition touts the GOP-led resistance on Capitol Hill to raising the debt ceiling, and paying for Obamacare, is tantamount to inciting rebellion against the U.S. government.
The website relays the background for the petition drive as this: “the House GOP leadership’s use of the Hastert Rule and H. Res. 368 to shut down the government and threaten the U.S. economy with default is an attempt to extort the United States government into altering or abolishing the Affordable Care Act and thus, is self-evidently a seditious conspiracy. Arrest the perpetrators in Congress immediately and bring them to justice.”
The bottom of the website includes this caveat — that “MoveOn Civic Action does not necessarily endorse the contents of petitions posted on this site” and that “MoveOn Petitions is an open tool that anyone can use to post a petition.” But the “about” section of the site makes clear that the petition forum is a MoveOn program “to provide individuals and organizations with the tools to start and win their own grassroots campaigns.”
Plenty have signed on to the call to prosecute Republicans.
Petitioner number 17280, Elodie Carter, from New Orleans says to “Please arrest David Vitter!” And number 17275 from St. Cloud, Minn., Katie Lietzau, wrote: “Congress representatives are elected as public servants to represent the majority of Americans. … The tea party Republicans have not respected those practices in the worst possible way, by holding the country … its processes … the economy … and its people hostage as leverage for selfish reasons. … The tea party Republicans need to be held responsible, and frankly need to be made an example of.”