Since yesterday the “I” word – impeachment – has begun to be thrown around a lot.
Some quarters seem to think that it just happen this time. Others suggest that it is more talk than action and the numbers needed to pull this are still not there.
Coming out of the “critical” Nawaz Sharif-Asif Zardari meetings one keeps wondering how much of this is an effort to keep the coalition going and how much is a real push to change the essential political equations of Pakistan. There are reports that Gen. Musharraf is taking this move seriously enough to cancel his trip to China (to attend the Olympics opening ceremony). On the other hand some of Gen. Musharraf’s supporters are claiming that no such cancellation has happened. We do know, however, that he is taking this challenge seriously and lining up his supporters.
All in all, there is too much noise to say what is happening. But something is clearly happening. Does the PPP-PML(N) have the numbers they need to go ahead? Does the President have the numbers he needs to stop it? And what of all the external actors and where they may lean, why and for what?
Interestingly, we had run a ATP Poll back in June asking you what you thought would have happened to Gen. Musharraf by October 2008? The majority (38%) had thought that he would be impeached by then. A significant number (31%) thought that by October 2008 we woudl be still muddling through as we are now.
We do not intend to open the Poll again, but it does seem that either of those two answers could turn out to be true again. Indeed, even our earlier Poll on the subject, from October 2007, may still be relevant in its results!
So, since we can’t make full sense of exactly what all of this adds up to, we thought we woudl ask our best source: You. What do you think? What is happening? What might happen? And why?