Once again, Majority Leader Harry Reid demonstrates why he deserved to be the first recipient of the prestigious Hero of the Bush Revolution medal.
He proves his worthiness today when the FISA bill comes up for a vote in the Senate. Our Leader and Deputy Leader really like the bill that came out of the Intelligence Committee, because it gives them the ability to spy on people who might be disloyal to the party without any oversight.They don't like the Judiciary Committee bill, because it requires a justification to spy.
Hero Reid said he will allow votes on both bills, and offered helpful advice to the Republicans, telling them they should consider tabling the Judiciary Committee Bill in order to kill it.
He is also fiddling with the 60 vote super majority policy he's used so effectively to help the Republican's avoid undergoing the embarrassment of actually being forced to filibuster against things like troop withdrawals and Iraq funding. It requires a bill to have at least 60 votes lined up before it comes to a vote. The 60 votes make the vote filibuster-proof.
He's doing away with the 60 vote policy for the initial votes. A simple majority will be all it takes to kill the Judiciary Bill and move the Intelligence Committee Bill forward. It's a smart move. It's in keeping with his policy of preventing the Republicans from facing the possibility of having to filibuster. Because the Republicans want the Intelligence Committee Bill to pass, it will be the Democrats who will be forced to filibuster, instead. It should provide a bunch of great "Like all Democrats, Sen. XXX is soft on terrorism" quotes in the upcoming election.
Hero Reid will then reinstate the 60 vote policy for the bill amendment process. This is good because one of the amendments will strip the retroactive immunity for telecoms provision from the bill. A simple majority won't be enough to do it. It will require a super majority.
It needs to stay in the bill because if it is stripped, companies like AT&T could be sued for spying on us. You see, back when Our Leader instituted his wiretapping program, agents of the State Security Apparatus approached the telecoms and asked them to install the wiretapping equipment. Companies like Sprint and Qwest said 'no, that's unconstitutional.' Other companies like AT&T said "Hey, this is a good opportunity to get more contracts from Our Leader's government, fuck the constitution, let's do it!" and installed the equipment as quickly as possible. Now they are being sued.
If the retroactive immunity amendment passes, companies like AT&T will be less likely to violate the constitution. We can't have that. It;d be like giving the terrorists a green light to begin raping our grandpas. Thank God we have Hero Reid there to stop it.
Will the presidential candidates be Heroes too
Sen. Obama and Sen. Clinton are just a very short plane ride away, let's hope campaigning is more important to them.
But that Booman guy is telling people to undermine Our Leader by writing letters to the candidates urging them to go to DC and oppose the bills. Don't listen to him. Our Leader needs these tools to cull the dissenting goats from the conforming sheep.
Info about what's in the bill.
And mcjoan is telling people to hit the phones:
Senator Dodd spoke passionately tonight on the Senate floor, detailing the abuses of the Bush administration and the danger of allowing any American corporation to be put above the rule of law. Who will stand with him? In December, the following Senators stood with him:
* Barbara Boxer: (202) 224-3553
* Sherrod Brown: (202) 224-2315
* Russ Feingold: (202) 224-5323
* Ted Kennedy: (202) 224-4543
* Bill Nelson: (202) 224-5274
* Ron Wyden: (202) 224-5244
Additionally, these Senators who have expressed support for Dodd's filibuster, but didn't participate on December 17 when Dodd took to the floor either in statements or to Kossacks making phone calls today:
* Joe Biden: (202) 224-5042
* Hillary Clinton: (202) 224-4451
* John Kerry: (202) 224-2742
* Bob Menendez: (202) 224-2742
* Barack Obama: (202) 224-2854
Based on reports from my first post today, Kossacks report that the following Senators oppose telco amnesty but it isn't clear that they'll help Dodd in his filibuster:
* Ben Cardin: (202) 224-4524
* Norm Coleman: (202) 224-5641
* Dick Durbin: (202) 224-2152
Call these Senators and thank them for their support, past, present, and hopeful, and urge them to stand with Senator Dodd in the debate tomorrow and over the next days--however long it takes. If your Senators aren't on the list, call them, urge them to uphold the rule of law and reject telco amnesty, and to help Senator Dodd's filibuster.
Report back here and let us know who's on board.