Congress Should Support Amash Amendment Just Because White House Statement Is So Insulting
from the don't-take-that-kind-of-crap dept
Last night, we wrote about the pure insanity of the White House’s statement against the Amash Amendment, which would pull funding from the NSA for just the “dragnet” surveillance efforts, in which it collects all metadata on all phone calls. Considering that the very author of the Patriot Act insists the law was never meant to allow this kind of collection, Amash’s amendment shouldn’t be all that controversial. It’s literally him bringing the actual law back in line with what many in Congress thought the law already was. For the Obama White House to hit back by claiming that this clear fix to the law “is not the product of an informed, open, or deliberative process” is downright ridiculous and insulting, considering that the decision to reinterpret the law in secret was hardly the product of an “informed, open or deliberative process.”
In fact, as Marcy Wheeler points out, this statement is so insulting to Congress, that Congress should vote for the Amash amendment as a response to the White House’s claim. As she notes, this seems to be the White House blaming Congress for not being “informed, open or deliberative” in responsing to the administration’s own efforts to mislead Congress by keeping them not fully informed, with a secret process, that guaranteed many were kept in the dark. To then flip that around and blame Congress as if it was Congress who wasn’t being open is downright insulting:
Hell, if I were a self-respecting member of Congress, I’d support Amash-Conyers even if I weren’t already predisposed to, if only because this is such a crazy bat-shit claim to reason and openness.
The Executive Branch has had 7 years to have an open debate. It chose not to have that open debate. Now that one has been brought to it by Congress, it pretends Congress is the one at fault for the lack of informed or open process.
Of course, Wheeler makes another good point in that same post. The fact that the White House put this statement out, even after the NSA did a full court emergency lobby extravaganza to convince Congress not to support the amendment, at least suggests that the White House is realizing that there might really be enough votes to get this amendment through.
President Obama claimed he “welcomed this debate.” He might want to speed up that process, because it’s happening and all he’s doing is stalling and blaming others. But the debate is happening without him, and he might not like where it ends up.