Well, it’s official
. Congress will be doing nothing about Bush’s NSA spying program.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. Senate panel examining the Bush administration's domestic surveillance program backed away on Tuesday from plans to order top telephone companies to answer whether they gave call records to a U.S. spy agency.
A frustrated Senate Judiciary Committee Arlen Specter said he agreed to defer his earlier plans to subpoena telephone executives after Vice President Dick Cheney said they would be precluded on national security grounds from answering questions about the reported disclosure of call records.
"If I thought I could have done better today by pushing the telephone companies, I would have," Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, told reporters after a divisive committee meeting.
Less than a month ago Specter said lawmakers had to call on the telephone companies to provide details about their role. He was rebuked on Tuesday by some Democrats for pulling back.
But Specter said Cheney told committee member Orrin Hatch, a Utah Republican who acted as intermediary with the Bush administration, that he would look favorably on a bill Specter introduced to have the surveillance program reviewed by a court set up under the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
"Sen. Hatch said that if I would defer action on the telephone companies, which look to me vacuous, then he would get the administration to accept my bill," Specter said. "Now I don't regard that as a guarantee or a warranty, but that's what he said."
I’m really glad that Specter hasn’t lost his title as “Official Bush Bitch”. There is no doubt in my mind that Specter thinks this program is illegal, but refuses to speak out because this is a Republican administration. How’s that for integrity?
Tags:NSA Wiretapping Arlen Specter Congress Bush’s Bitch