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Former Senator Tom Daschle put in his two cents in an editorial in the WaPo saying Congress never granted the president the powers he's saying he had.
In the face of mounting questions about news stories saying that President Bush approved a program to wiretap American citizens without getting warrants, the White House argues that Congress granted it authority for such surveillance in the 2001 legislation authorizing the use of force against al Qaeda. On Tuesday, Vice President Cheney said the president "was granted authority by the Congress to use all means necessary to take on the terrorists, and that's what we've done."
So we see a slight controversy. Obviously we've had a minor misunderstanding about the Constitutional defined powers of the various branches...which seems to be a trend these days. While I don't feel Daschle is necessarily a bastion of truth over other politicians, I tend to believe his side of things in this current discussion. THe president clearly overstepped his bounds and many people on both sides are scratching their heads.
While courts have said the NSA can listen in on conversations, the ruling didn't appear to overturn the FISA statutes which merely say the agencies involved must eventually get a warrant...after 72 hours or 3 days. I don't see what the big deal is on that. Besides, in discussing this issue with D-Man earlier, he suggested we need to quit wasting so much time wiretapping and actually put some personnel in the field...people who speak arabic and know how these groups operate. Heaven forbid they might come up with something useful. But our government does like their toys.
posted by Stithmeister @ 10:22 AM
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I'm currently working in the telecomm industry but one of my passions is still politics.
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