Normally wouldn’t be running a followup roundup on an issue this close after the original post. The President’s unconstitutional and explicitly illegal wiretapping of Americans without warrants is the issue- and the critics are coming out of the woodwork. Is it just me, or are we working together better on this one? Here’s a roundup of the most recent talking points, but first a few new developments:
-Firstly (possibly the most important development), it just came out that Bush et al lied at press conferences where they’ve consistently said (the now familiar talking point) that Congress supposedly approved the illegal NSA program which included spying on Americans without getting warrants from a judge. More on that here. Hopefully this aspect of the story will get more play.
-Also on the congress aspect, C&L points to this: “The former Senate Majority and Minority leader, Tom Daschle, says tonight in a statement that the White House â€œomitted key detailsâ€ from him related to the NSA interception program”
-Next, remember when NYT mentioned that the “The White House asked The New York Times not to publish this article,” in their original article. Since then, Newsweek has picked up this aspect of the story, and investigated it further. It turns out that President Bush himself met with a top NYT Editor and Publisher to beg them not to run the wiretap story. As Newsweek Columnist Johnathan Alter writes:
The president was so desperate to kill The New York Timesâ€™ eavesdropping story, he summoned the paperâ€™s editor and publisher to the Oval Office. But it wasnâ€™t just out of concern about national security.
Bush was desperate to keep the Times from running this important storyâ€”which the paper had already inexplicably held for a yearâ€”because he knew that it would reveal him as a law-breaker.
WaPo has more on that scoop.
-Finally, one last new development. Raw Story reports about a potentially critical article set to splash into tomorrows NYT.
With the new developments in the story out of the way, let’s get onto reactions to what critics are already calling the Wiretap Scandal:
-Rep. John Lewis said Monday in a radio interview that President Bush should be impeached if he broke the law in authorizing spying on Americans.
-Jonathan Turley-on the Factor said that President Bush’s spying operation is based on a federal crime.
-Sen. Lindey Graham was not a happy camper over the revelations of these secret surveillance’s that President Bush authorized.
-Alan Dershowitz: I think the President broke the law. I think congress should hold hearings.
-Senator Barbara Boxer today asked four presidential scholars for their opinion on former White House Counsel John Deanâ€™s statement that President Bush admitted to an â€œimpeachable offenseâ€
-Sen. Russ Feingold in response to President Bush’s admission Saturday that the president personally authorized wiretaps of individuals who emailed or phoned other countries.