As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Thursday, April 16, 2009

DFHs 1, Sen. Hatch -2,384

What Josh Orton said.

Here's Senator Hatch, member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, back in June of 2008, laughing off "onerous" oversight provisions for the FISA bill:

Orrin Hatch, wrong. The "tinfoil hat" brigade, right. Again. Why, here's one of those mad hatters right now!

“Since 2001, I have spent a lot of time in the Intelligence Committee, the Judiciary Committee, and on the floor of the Senate bringing attention to both the possible and actual effects of legislation that has dangerously expanded the power of the executive branch to spy on innocent Americans. Despite these efforts, Congress insisted on enacting several measures including the USA PATRIOT Act, the Protect America Act, and the FISA Amendments Act, embarking on a tragic retreat from the principles that had governed the sensitive area of government surveillance for the previous three decades. Congress must get to work fixing these laws that have eroded the privacy and civil liberties of law-abiding citizens. In addition, the administration should declassify certain aspects of how these authorities have been used so that the American people can better understand their scope and impact.”

Of course, now that there's a DEMONCRAT in the White House, Hatch will probably don the aluminum foil himself. We are all conspiracy theorists now.

A couple other advances on this: Spencer Ackerman has the list of who potentially could be the mystery member of Congress who was wiretapped by the Bush Administration's NSA. The clues we had were: member of Congress who went on a trip to the Middle East in 2005-2006. That narrows it down to 27 potentials.

Also, Sen. Feingold had an interesting discussion in open testimony that hinted at this on Feb. 25 with David Kris, the nominee for Assistant Attorney General.

SEN. FEINGOLD: We had an opportunity -- and you can respond in a minute -- but we had an opportunity earlier today to discuss in a classified setting specific concerns I have about how the FISA amendment act has been implemented. Without discussing those specifics in an open hearing, do you agree that there are serious problems that need to be corrected?

MR. KRIS: Senator, I do, I appreciate very much the meeting we had this morning, you raised a number of concerns that I as an outsider had not appreciated and you certainly got my attention. I have been thinking about it since we met and if it's even possible you increased my desire to, if I were to be confirmed, to get to the bottom of the FISA amendments act and I hope if I am confirmed that I can take advantage of your learning of others on the committee and the intelligence committee to see how best to make any necessary improvements.

You may guess that none of this came from my cable news teevee this morning.

...UPDATE: DiFi says she'll hold a hearing. Maybe she can investigate her own vote to give away these massive spying powers to the NSA.

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