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Senate Confirms Mukasey (and Endorses Bush's Law Breaking)

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Mary Shaw       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink

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On Thursday night, the Senate worked late so they could confirm the nomination of Michael Mukasey as Attorney General. The confirmation passed by a vote of 53-40.

Six Democrats voted for the confirmation: Bayh (IN), Carper (DE), Feinstein (CA), Landrieu (LA), Nelson (NE), and Schumer (NY). And, not surprisingly, former Democrat Joe Lieberman (CT), now an Independent but almost always sympathetic to the Republican agenda, voted in favor of Mukasey. Not a single Republican senator voted against Mukasey. Remember this vote the next time these folks are up for reelection.

They endorsed a man who refuses to say that waterboarding is torture, even though experts in the field have agreed that waterboarding violates the U.S. anti-torture statute.

And they endorsed a man who seems to believe that the president is above the law.

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I fear that Alberto Gonzales's departure was nothing more than just another photo op staged by the White House for dramatic effect. I fear that Gonzales's legacy will live on through Mukasey for the next 14 months.

How many more people will be tortured in that time?

Our only hope is that Congress will quickly pass legislation that will expressly outlaw the use of waterboarding. (Sen. Ted Kennedy has introduced bill S.1943 to accomplish this.) And our only hope is that the torturers will comply with that legislation, and not choose another method that they don't believe is expressly forbidden.

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I am not optimistic.

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Mary Shaw is a Philadelphia-based writer and activist, with a focus on politics, human rights, and social justice. She is a former Philadelphia Area Coordinator for the Nobel-Prize-winning human rights group Amnesty International, and her views (more...)
 

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