courageous, principled republicans?

Posted on Monday 20 February 2006


Boo: Several days ago, we all felt a thud when the Senate Intelligence Committee tabled a motion for a full Congressional Investigation of the N.S.A. Unwarranted Domestic Surveillance program, seeing it as underhanded political sleight of hand by chairman Pat Roberts.

Yeah: Then Roberts seemed to reverse himself, agreeing with Specter’s idea of turning the issue over to the F.I.S.A. judges for review.

Boo and Yeah: Now it turns out that Andrew Card called Senator Olympia Snowe pressing hard to get her to stop questioning the President. It apparently really put her off. She called Senator Chuck Hagel and they both told Pat Roberts if he called it to a vote, they’d vote for the investigation. That’s when he tabled things and got more concilliatory.

White House Working to Avoid Wiretap Probe:
But Some Republicans Say Bush Must Be More Open About Eavesdropping Program

And from the Federation of American Scientists’ Secrecy News:


On February 16, Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Sen. Jay Rockefeller presented a proposal to investigate the National Security Agency warrantless surveillance program.

A copy of Sen. Rockefeller’s motion, outlining the scope of the proposed investigation, is here:

But Committee chairman Sen. Pat Roberts blocked a vote on the motion until March 7.

"If, by that time, we have reached no detailed accommodation with the Administration concerning the Committee’s oversight role, it is possible that the Committee may vote to conduct an inquiry into the program," Sen. Roberts said.

"If we are prevented from fully understanding and evaluating the NSA program, our committee will continue its slide into irrelevance," said Sen. Rockefeller.

"Like Senator Rockefeller, I will not sit idly by and allow the President’s possible breaking of the law to be swept under the rug," said Sen. Robert Byrd in a February 17 floor statement.

"I am today announcing my intention to submit to the Congress legislation that will establish a nonpartisan, independent, 9-11-style commission to investigate and determine the legality of the President’s actions," Sen. Byrd said.

[he says with his fingers crossed again and a prayer in his heart again while throwing salt over his left shoulder again].

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