Thursday, January 24, 2008

woke up it was a FISA morning

This morning, at approximately 9:30, Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd continues his fight to prevent George Bush, Dick Cheney, rubberstamp Republican senators, and a troubling number of Democratic Senators from taking another bite out of the Constitution. In other words, he is fighting to stop the horrible SSCI version of the FISA revision that includes retroactive immunity for the telecommunications industry.

Because of jaw-droppingly bad “leadership” by Majority Leader Harry Reid, Dodd is forced to threaten filibuster against his own party. Dodd has shown real leadership on this issue, taking time away from his presidential campaign in Iowa, the last time this bill hit the Senate floor.

This time around, Dodd is out of the presidential race, but two other sitting senators are still claiming they have what it takes to lead us out of our Bush/Cheney-authored hell. Yes, I am talking about you, Barack. . . and you, Hillary.

You don’t need a vision for change, and you don’t need experience, you just need to be in Washington, DC, on the floor of the Senate, doing the job that voters elected you to do.

Why? Well, how about because a clear majority of Americans are opposed to telecom immunity and two-thirds believe that the government should have to get a warrant before it taps into the communications of its citizens (even if those Americans are calling overseas).

Or, how about because absolutely anything that Dick Cheney is for is something that you should be against. And Vice President Cankles has a hard-on (well, whatever passes for hard-on in his sclerotic world) for telecom immunity.

Or, how about because US code already provides cover for companies that can demonstrate that they acted in good faith, so telecom immunity is really Bush/Cheney immunity—pure and simple.

Or, how about because the only good faith that the telcos ever show is their good faith in the almighty dollar—if they’re so hell-bent on doing their patriotic duty, then how come they are disconnecting the wiretaps because the government hasn’t paid their bills?

Or, how about because your hard-charging competition for the Democratic nomination has dared you to step up and show America that you would really fight for our interests when Bush comes to shove.

John Edwards:

“In Washington today, telecom lobbyists have launched a full-court press to win retroactive immunity for their illegal eavesdropping on American citizens. Granting retroactive immunity will let corporate law-breakers off the hook and hamstring efforts to learn the truth about Bush's illegal spying program.

"It's time for Senate Democrats to show a little backbone and stand up to George W. Bush and the corporate lobbyists. They should do everything in their power -- including joining Senator Dodd's efforts to filibuster this legislation -- to stop retroactive immunity. The Constitution should not be for sale at any price."

Or, how about because it is just plain and simple the right thing to do—and if you can’t see that on an issue as clear as this one, then how am I supposed to trust your judgment down the line?

(Obama and Clinton have made “statements” opposing telecom immunity in response to inquiries made by Markos for his Wednesday post on The Hill, but BHO and HRC are both sitting senators, so it’s time they put their butts where their mouths are. . . or something like that.)

In December, both Barack and Hillary pledged to support Chris Dodd’s filibuster, but neither of them left their presidential campaigns to return to DC and actually do so. Today is their chance at a do-over. As Jason has noted, Obama, Clinton, and twelve other senators pledged their support for Dodd’s filibuster in December—why not give them a call to se where they stand (and where they are literally standing) today.

Fax / Phone

Feingold (202) 224-2725 / (202) 224-5323
Dodd (202) 224-1083 / (202) 224-2823
Obama (202) 228-4260 / (202) 224-2854
Sanders (202) 228-0776 / (202) 224-5141
Menendez (202) 228-2197 / (202) 224-4744
Biden (202) 224-0139 / (202) 224-5042
Brown (202) 228-6321 / (202) 224-2315
Harkin (202) 224-9369 / (202) 224-3254
Cardin (202) 224-1651 / (202) 224-4524
Clinton (202) 228-0282 / (202) 224-4451
Akaka (202) 224-2126 / (202) 224-6361
Webb (202) 228-6363 / (202) 224-4024
Kennedy (202) 224-2417 / (202) 224-4543
Boxer (415) 956-6701 / (202) 224-3553

(cross-posted on capitoilette, The Seminal, and Daily Kos)

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