Warrantless Wiretap 'Compromise' Really Just A Get Out Of Jail Free Card From The President

from the that-doesn't-seem-right dept

We’ve been following the ridiculous attempts by the administration to protect telcos who most likely broke the law in supplying warrantless wiretaps by trying to get “immunity” included in the new FISA bill. As we’ve pointed out, this makes absolutely no sense. If the administration or the telcos (or both) broke the law — then that issue should be explored. Granting anyone immunity from even being tried for breaking the law doesn’t seem appropriate. If there were special circumstances that explain why the telcos or the administration broke the law, why not at least have them come out in court rather than sweeping them all under the rug?

Unfortunately, now there’s word coming out that a new “compromise” bill is likely to be approved. However, the details suggest this isn’t a compromise. This is exactly what the administration wanted, and which some members of Congress have been fighting against. Basically, it would let the President say that he assured the telcos that their actions were legal — and that would grant them immunity. In other words, this law would basically say that as long as the President tells you something is legal, it’s automatically legal, and you can’t get in trouble for doing it. That’s not how the law is supposed to work — and is a huge abuse of power. There’s simply no way Congress should let this through, as it sets an awful precedent.

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Comments on “Warrantless Wiretap 'Compromise' Really Just A Get Out Of Jail Free Card From The President”

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BRADLEY STEWART (profile) says:


as far as I could throw a Steinway Grand Piano and I have a bad back. He has demonstrated my belief to me for the last seven years through every agency of the Federal Government. For me my most memorable Kodak moment was during a Senate Judicary hearing dealing with the firing of the eight or nine Federal Prosecuters. Two prominant Republican Senators Orin Hatch and Jeff Sessions were in attendance. I have seen both of them at one time or another look ill dealing with something in a hearing, but I have never seen both of them in the same session look that ill. These company’s knew exactly what they were doing! In the interest of explaining to President Bush and any president and any company’s that works with a following president the rule of law is what this country is based on. This thing should hit the court system.

Robert says:

The real end of the USA

If this gets passed. It gives the president the power of a king. He could tell you “go shoot that old lady, i said you could” and you would not be breaking the law. Unless the supreme court judges or on the take then they would mark this unconstitutional in a heart beat.

So its show time. we get to see if everything the USA stood for has been destroyed or not. Our only defense, as American citizens from corrupt laws is the supreme courts. This falls into there lap, To do what CONGRESS should do, and cross this out as BAD.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: The real end of the USA

The supreme court has been doing a fairly good job lately. I expect this to continue. Should this law get passed, everyone who yay-says it will get voted out of office… And the justices will not rule it anything BUT unconstitutional.

After all, they are in charge of the court… They’re not going to stand back while congress limits their power!

ober says:


If we stand by without taking action any longer then we have really lost all hopes of keeping America true to our Constitution and we’ll only have ourselves to blame. It’s already been degraded on so many levels.. so many levels. TAKE A STAND MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS!

Remember the truth in what Baron Acton once wrote… “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

It’s time for ACTION!


bob dog says:

I can only stand in awe. You would think that all the political milk had been extracted from this issue years ago. How many investigations do you think we need on this subject, anyhow?

But, no. A lot of you guys are still mad about losing the 2000 election. We stole it, you know. Nobel Prize-Weiner Al Gore should be President. Then everything would be all frickin’ perfect.

hegemon13 says:

Could be a good thing...

Before I get flamed for the subject, please read the full comment.

I can see one way this could turn out good, and it is the only rationale I could come up with for why the Dems would suddenly give in. If Bush signs a paper stating that he assured the telecoms that it was legal, it confirms the program. It means that Bush no longer has any sort of deniability in his role in the wiretaps. It may let the telecoms off the hook (bad), but it may put Bush and his administration ON the hook. Maybe, just maybe, this document to “free” the telecoms could be the smoking gun that leads to Bush’s much-deserved impeachment.

For the record, I am a conservative and am registered Republican. That doesn’t mean I am willing to stand by and watch a president, regardless of his supposed political affiliation, dismantle our constitution. Conservatism is supposed to be about small government and maintaining the original founders’ intent, not about creating a dictatorship dressed in red.

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