February 26, 2008 – Kennebunkport, Maine — Calling President George Bush “the worst president in the history of the United States,” Independent U.S. Senate candidate Laurie Dobson stood on the steps of Town Hall Tuesday and called upon the town to indict Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney as war criminals.
Saying that both had “made killing fields of many countries,” Dobson urged town leaders to issue a warrant for their arrests.
“There is compelling, undeniable, irrefutable evidence that crimes are going on,” she said.
Dobson filed a copy of her indictment with Town Manager Larry Mead and later read it aloud for gathered media members overlooking Walker’s Point, the summer home of the President’s parents. Flanked by campaign manager Bruce Marshall and human rights lawyer Harold Burbank, Dobson said she will do what she can, from appearing at meetings to gathering petitions, to see that the issue makes it on to the town warrant in June.
The central focus of Dobson’s campaign has been calling for an end to the war in Iraq and the impeachment of both Bush and Cheney. If impeachment doesn’t happen, though, she wants both to be indicted as war criminals and for “crimes against our Constitution.”
As for the indictment, Dobson said she was following in the footsteps of Brattleboro, Vt., who adopted an indictment resolution in that town.
Things weren’t looking quite as simple in Kennebunkport.
“Under Maine law, towns have no power to indict,” Mead said.
Further, though Dobson called upon the police to arrest both Bush and Cheney should they come to town, that doesn’t appear likely either.
“It’s my understanding that the town has no authority to make an indictment,” said Deputy Police Chief Kurt Moses, “so it’s a non-issue.”
Mead said he will take Dobson’s request to the Board of Selectmen on Feb. 28.
“They can decide whether they want to move forward,” he said.
Selectman Kristy Bryant got an advance look at the indictment, as she happened to be stopping at Town Hall while Dobson was giving her press conference.
While Bryant said Dobson’s request would be discussed at a future meeting, she also called it, “a shameless plug for her campaign.”
If the selectmen choose not to move forward with the indictment, Dobson’s next recourse would be to gather the 210 certified signatures needed to have the issue placed on the June town warrant.
At that point, Mead said, the town would need to seek legal advice.
“We would seek advice from counsel,” Mead said. “We would need to know if what we were asking people to vote on was within our legal right.”
For her part, Dobson urged residents of the town she calls the “home of my heart” to refuse to allow “barbaric individuals who mistreat people” to have any right to come within town lines. And while she acknowledged that hers was just a “small campaign,” she said she planned to use it to follow her conscience and make a difference.
Quoting Abraham Lincoln, she said, “Let us have faith that right makes right; and in that faith let us do our duty as we understand it.”
Text of Laurie Dobson’s call for indictment:
“Shall the Kennebunkport Board of Selectmen instruct the Town Attorney to draft indictments against President Bush and Vice President Cheney for crimes against our Constitution, and publish said indictments for consideration by other authorities, and shall it be the law of the Town of Kennebunkport that the Kennebunkport Police, pursuant to the above-mentioned indictments, arrest and detain George W. Bush and Richard Cheney in Kennebunkport of they are not duly impeached, and prosecute or extradite them to other authorities that may reasonably content to prosecute them.”