This weekend, after back-to-back revelations about Benghazi and the IRS, the public sentiment to impeach President Obama began to drift toward the Republican mainstream, with Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, both fielding questions about impeachment of the president on Sunday talk shows, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee predicting Obama would not serve out his full term. The Daily Beast wrote Monday that "the glands are swelling" in the GOP for Obama's impeachment.
But a number of conservative groups have been pushing the I-word for months, if not years–among them a birther group, an anti-immigration PAC accused of ties to white supremacists, a super PAC that worked on former Tea Party Rep. Allen West's 2012 recount, and the man who made the controversial Willie Horton TV ads during the 1988 presidential race.
A look at these groups and their campaigns to impeach the president:
Americans for Legal Immigration PAC (ALIPAC), an anti-immigration political action committee, runs the website WecanimpeachObama.com, which claims nearly 13,000 supporters. That site's mission declares Obama's actions on immigration "authoritarian, dictatorial, and a violation of both the letter and the spirit of the U.S. Constitution," and has previously been the home of organized protests against Obama across the country. ALIPAC President William Gheen tells Whispers that the campaign is "receiving renewed attention because of Benghazi and the IRS tyranny."
ALIPAC has previously been accused of ties to white supremacists and condoning racism in its publications, including by John McCain. ALIPAC defended itself against those accusations by saying 20 percent of its supporters were minorities.
Revive America PAC, a grass roots super PAC, runs a campaign to impeach the president on presidentdowngrade.com, where it also sells impeach Obama related products, including bumper stickers. Its petition to impeach POTUS has more than 100,000 signatures, and its founder Bob Adams tells Whispers "the grass roots has been wild about this since Day 1." An email from the group Monday says that "between 'Benghazi-gate', 'Fast and Furious', Obama's 'Gun-Grabbing' Executive Actions, and now the latest IRS firestorm, it's hard to say which disgusting Obama scandal will consume his Imperial Presidency first!"
Revive America previously raised funds for former Florida Rep. Allen West's failed recount attempt, and has been hyperactive on the Benghazi issue.
The Conservative Majority Fund, a group known for its birther theories about the president, has a running petition asking Congress to impeach Obama. The group has been pushing impeachment since the days after Obama won his second term, when it launched a robocall campaign to draw support. On its website, the group asks supporters to think about whether Obama is "exceeding the constitutional bounds of the powers of the office" or engaging in "behavior grossly incompatible with the proper function and purpose of the office."
The fund previously produced an ad questioning Obama's college records, social security number and birth certificate.
The Policy Issues Institute, a "social welfare" 501(c)4, runs an impeach Obama fundraising campaign that warns supporters that "Barack Hussein and his allies have powerful and influential friends with very deep pockets" and that "if we're going to do this right we will need the resources to counter his efforts."
The Policy Issues Institute is run by Floyd Brown, a political consultant and opposition researcher best known for introducing the "Willie Horton" TV ad during the 1988 Bush-Dukakis presidential race. That ad, which featured a convicted felon who escaped during a furlough program, was considered by some to be flagrant "race-baiting."
In addition to these very vocal groups, a number of independent Impeach Obama Facebook pages also exist, including one that shows Obama with a Hitler-style mustache, as well as Impeach Obama T-shirts, and Impeach Obama petitions. The White House previously responded to a petition on its website for impeachment by saying it "won't be calling for the President's impeachment–and given the fact that you made your appeal to the White House itself, we doubt you were holding your breath."