March 14, 2008

House FISA Debate This Morning

House debate over the FISA travesty begins this morning. The Dems are advancing the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 3773, or in other words, they are revamping the Rockefeller/Cheney bill the Senate sent to the House to include more meaningful oversight of the Bush Administration's intelligence gathering activities, reaffirms the legal necessity of warrants in order to spy on American Citizens, and most importantly, it does not include retroactive immunity for telecommunication companies which participated in W's illegal domestic surveillance programs.

This is an important vote. The adoption of this amendment would be a major victory for the rule of law in this country (and yes, despite Chumpy Bush's best efforts, there are still laws in this country). It would also represent a much needed vehicle for Congressional restraint of this out of control emperor-president. Yet the most important aspect of this vote is not immediatly apparent. If this amendment is passed, it will be extremely difficult for the Rethugs in Washington to remove it. The procedural details are a bit convoluted, but Kagro X at Kos does an excellent job explaining them to all us regular folk.

Gogo CongressCritters! Do your damn jobs for a change!

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