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The Senate Caves on FISA. Will The House Stand or Fold?

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We all realize we have a big problem with Bush and Cheney and we know that providing there are no excuses for Bush to declare martial law, they will be gone in less than a year. I’m sure people realize that we also have a big problem with the Senate. The House seems to have “caught the drift” coming from the American people. They finally censored Bolten and Miers for not answering the subpoena’s that they had sent out almost a year ago to testify in front of Congress on the end-run around the FISA Court that the administration had perpetrated, but that was the House. The Senate, clueless and bold, voted to give the telecom companies a get out of jail card for allowing the Federal Government to tap American’s phones without a warrant. That’s par for the Senate that shows no oversight tenacity or even tries to make a show out of acting as if it did. The Senate has been the biggest defender of Bush and this administrations policy since the beginning.

We have had the Patriot Act shoved down our throats, The Military Commissions Act of 2006, The Warner Defense Act (Re-vamped Insurrection Act ), The Kyl-Lieberman Amendment and a host of other fascistic laws. So why is the Senate so eager to pass this law giving Immunity to the telecommunications industries before the House can use it’s oversight on how the administration broke the law by skirting the FISA Court in the first place? The simple truth is that they are not out to “protect” the telecommunications companies, this is just another way to protect this administration’s flagrant disregard for the “rule of law” (unless they use it on someone they don’t particularly like). It seems as it’s just perfectly all right for President Bush and Vice-President Cheney to spout on about the subject, but when it come to themselves, it appears that “executive privilege” allows them to spit on the Constitution and the US Code as they see fit.

The Senate meanwhile, gives them a pass on this type of behavior time after time. Arlen Spector (R-PA) talks a good game on C-Span and the talk shows claiming that the Constitution must be followed and the rule of law upheld, but when it comes to a vote, with all the years he has on that decrepit body of his, he runs under a table and votes with his party every single time. C’mon Senator, we see what kind of game you are playing with us? Why don’t you just come out and say it, that loyalty to the Republican Party comes before the Constitution? We can see what you are doing, we’re not all stupid. Meanwhile, the Senate is pressing the House to pass a “compromise” on the FISA Bill even before the House can grill Miers and Bolton on exactly what they did! I believe that I have most Americans with me when I say that until we get to the bottom of what happened and why, we should give nobody immunity from breaking the law! That’s just the way it is! No get out of jail cards for the telecommunications companies, no card for Cheney and Bush that took it on them to break the law as if they “were the law”. It all comes down to this basic principle; either we all follow the law and those that don’t are punished, or we just forget about the “rule of law” and everyone does as they please.

The Senate has been a role model for no one in this nation over the last decade. The two Senators that are running for the Democratic nomination can’t even show up to vote! The rest of the Democrats, save 29 that voted not to pass this new FISA Bill should hang their heads in shame. It’s like this, you can expect this type of behavior from the Republicans, and this is what they have been doing for a long time. This of course, still doesn’t make it right, but having Democrats abandon their principles in an election year to boot, is downright despicable. Where were the two “darlings” of the Democratic Party while this vote was being held? Looking after their own self-interests, that’s where.

As far as I can see, it’s time that the American people took the time out to examine their Senator’s voting records. I believe that there are many in that august body that really need to go home. If they can’t take their oath to uphold the Constitution and the laws of this country, maybe it would be a good thing if they never took that oath again!

I dare them to put pressure on the House to pass the FISA Bill the way the Senate has amended it. Once that happens, every Representative that caves to their demands will be duly noted and put up to public scrutiny on every website and every venue that I have access too. It is time that the House stands its ground against bullies from the upper chamber. There is no good reason to give this administration more power than it has at this specific time. The American people will not see you as “soft on terrorism”, rather they will see you as someone that stood up to the administration and demands that they follow the rule of law like everyone else. Let the Senators be the ones that face the angry voters.

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The entire argument is like this, either we are a Democratic Republic or we are not. Either we have an efficient system of checks and balances or we don’t. If we don’t, then tell us now and we can change this government back to the way our fore-fathers intended it, either by an Article V Convention, or in some other way. The House should not bow to pressure and let this administration off the hook. They broke the law and they should be charged. Let’s see what our House of Representatives does. The ball’s in their court. They can either stand up or cave like so many times before. Before I end this, how many times must the American people put up with this administration breaking the law? This is the question we should all be asking ourselves.

That’s the way I see it.

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Tim Gatto is Ret. US Army and has been writing against the Duopoly for the last decade. He has two books on Amazon, Kimchee Days or Stoned Colds Warriors and Complicity to Contempt.

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