BlueBloggin

Taking Texas And The Nation Back

Demanding Congress To Reverse Their Capitulation

Posted by nytexan on August 8, 2007

I received the email below from MoveOn.org and thought you would like to sign the petition.

The Democratic-controlled Congress did the unthinkable on Saturday night: They gave President Bush and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales more unchecked power to wiretap Americans without a warrant.1 Yes, that’s the same Attorney General who is currently mired in scandal and probably committed perjury on this very issue.2

Why’d they do it? Because the president used fear to intimidate them and it worked.3

Enough is enough. We have to send a strong message to Congress that there is not rade-off between fundamental liberties and security. Preserving our Constitution is essential to our security—we can’t lead on freedom around the world when we’re actively undermining the rule of law at home.

A good place to start is by having hundreds of thousands of us sign on to this petition demanding that Congress reverse their capitulation to Bush and the politics of fear. If enough of us speak out we’ll send a clear message that Americans aren’t buying the administration’s scare tactics.

We’ll make sure to deliver your comments to your representative and senators within the week.

The President used fear of another terrorist attack to bully Congress into giving him more unchecked power and they gave in to his scare tactics. While most Democrats voted against these expanded powers, Democratic leaders in Congress didn’t put up much of a fight and they didn’t stand up and say ‘no’ to Bush. We’ve seen this play out before—most notably when almost every member of Congress voted for the Patriot Act—many without even reading it.4

They do this because they’re afraid of being seen as weak on security—and because they buy the conventional wisdom that voters don’t really care about constitutional freedoms. If enough of us sign, we can make it plain just how broad support for preserving the Constitution is.

The only good news here is that these new unchecked powers that Congress gave the Bush administration aren’t permanent. They’ll expire in six month sand we have to make sure that Congress doesn’t renew them then.

Here’s how the Washington Post’s editorial board described what happened:5

“The Democratic-led Congress, more concerned with protecting its political backside than with safeguarding the privacy of American citizens, left town early yesterday after caving in to administration demands that it allow warrantless surveillance of the phone calls and e-mails of American citizens, with scant judicial supervision and no reporting to Congress about how many communications are being intercepted. To call this legislation ill-considered is to give it too much credit: It was scarcely considered at all. Instead, it was strong-armed through both chambers by an administration that seized the opportunity to write its warrantless wiretapping program into law—or, more precisely, to write it out from under any real legal restrictions.”

To keep focus on this, we’re helping start a new long-term effort called the AmericanFreedom Campaign to keep the pressure on Congress and make sure they fix this mess instead of making these powers permanent. We hope you can help over the coming months.

It’s Congress’s job to act as a check on the president’s authority—not as a rubber-stamp. They have to know that we’re watching them and we’re demanding real accountability for this overreaching president.

Click here to add your name to the petition:

http://pol.moveon.org/capitulation/o.pl?&id=10919-6618849-kXLs_w&t=5

President Bush still hasn’t responded to Congress’ subpoenas demanding the legal rationale for his warrantless wiretapping. If they don’t rein him in now, it is unlikely that he—or any president that comes after him—will ever comply with this kind of necessary oversight.

Thanks for all you do,

–Nita, Wes, Justin, Carrie and the MoveOn.org Political Action Team
Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

Sources:

1.”House Approves Wiretap Measure,” Washington Post, August 5, 2007
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=2869&id=10919-6618849-kXLs_w&t=6

2. Senator May Seek Gonzales Perjury Probe, Washington Post, July 26, 2007
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=2870&id=10919-6618849-kXLs_w&t=7

3. The Fear of Fear Itself—NYTimes Editorial, New York Times, August 7,2007
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/07/opinion/07tue1.html

4. Rep. Jim McDermott, Congressional Record: July 8, 2004,
http://www.fas.org/irp/congress/2004_cr/h070804.html

5. Warrantless Surrender,Washington Post, August 7, 2007
http://www.moveon.org/r?r=2871&id=10919-6618849-kXLs_w&t=8

 

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6 Responses to “Demanding Congress To Reverse Their Capitulation”

  1. phil_in_ny said

    Thanks!..I’m on it.

  2. I find it very interesting that a site claiming that the President used fear to get a bill put through Congress, is going to attempt to use fear by threatening those lawmakers with lost votes unless they capitulate to this ultimatum. The irony is almost sickening.

  3. nytexan said

    xristosdomini:
    You actually missed the whole point. Congress has to make up their mind on what they’re doing. When a court rules that Bush’s acts are illegal and he is told to stop and he doesn’t, then Congress authorizes what has been ruled as illegal; you have to stop and ask what’s going on. That’s the point. There’s nothing ironic about it.

  4. nytexan said

    Phil:
    Thank you.

  5. actually, I caught your point loud and clear. I just decided not to talk about it because I disagreed with you. However, you failed to notice my point that this petition is doing the same thing MoveOn decried Bush for supposedly doing. The DNC is between a rock and a hard place, they have to worry about pandering to supporters by slamming the Iraq war, but they also have to attract new voters by seeming to be strong on National Defense. The problem is that if you succeed at one, you necessarily have to fail at the other. Hence, the pointless six-month compromise. History will be the judge of our actions now, and rarely does History agree with the contemporaries.

  6. nytexan said

    xristosdomini:
    That’s fine we disagree, it’s helpful. However, I do agree with you on the MoveOn issue and the DNC being between a rock and a hard place. But I don’t know how Congress can move forward on the hearings they have spent months on when they passed this bill.

    I’m please that it’s only a six month bill but I guess I’m still looking for an answer. The petition may not get me there.

    Thanks for your comments.

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