Rep. Peter King Says It's A Disgrace To Call Out James Clapper For Lying To Congress

from the interesting-moral-barometer dept

Rep. Peter King's willingness to continually go to bat for the surveillance state, no matter how ridiculous he looks, is quite impressive. As you recall, King used to be a major terrorist supporter -- when those terrorists were his friends in the IRA -- but now acts as if the government should toss out the Constitution if it means some minor advantage in the war against terrorists from a different part of the world with slightly darker skin. King has argued that reporters ought to be prosecuted for reporting on government leaks, even if those leaks revealed unconstitutional programs. He flat out lied about Glenn Greenwald, and then argued that Greenwald should be arrested. He's claimed that calling the NSA's snooping and spying "snooping" and "spying" is a form of slander.

And now, it appears he's directly attacking others in Congress who see the world a bit differently. We pointed out that some in Congress are finally getting much more aggressive in calling for action of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper lying to Congress. Recently, Senator Rand Paul made a claim that is perfectly valid: that James Clapper's lying to Congress was more damaging than anything Ed Snowden did.
“That Clapper is lying to Congress is probably more injurious to our intelligent capabilities than anything Snowden did,” Paul said on CNN. “Clapper has damaged the credibility of the entire intelligence apparatus and I’m not sure what to believe anymore when they come to Congress.”
So, how did King respond to this statement from someone in his own party? He went ballistic. He claimed that Senator Paul "disgraced his office" by calling out Clapper for lying to Congress.
"He disgraced his office and he owes Gen. Clapper an apology immediately."
Huh? Clapper himself has flat out admitted that he lied. Pete King appears to be telling everyone that it's okay to lie to Congress. Yes, the same guy who wants to prosecute journalists.

In all of this, I think there are a few people who have "disgraced his office," but Rand Paul is not one of them.

Filed Under: disgrace, james clapper, lying, nsa, nsa surveillance, peter king, rand paul

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Dec 2013 @ 12:18pm

    Mr. King's choice of words was not "optimal" (much like Phil), but the sentiment behind his comments is not without merit. I saw at least two of Mr. Paul's interviews, and because of my familiarity with this matter it quickly became apparent that Mr. Paul's understanding of the relevant facts was significantly incomplete. While Mr. Paul's concern about the NSA given recent revelations is certainly understandable, his comments concerning Mr. Clapper are quite flawed. For example, he never mentioned that the public hearing at which this matter arose was preceded by prior classified meetings at which the question was posed and answered. Since Mr. Clapper apparently provides accurate answers to question involving classified information at classified meetings, one is shooting from the hip generalizing that testimony by Mr. Clapper to Congress cannot be trusted.

    As for the comment re Snowden and Clapper, at least Clapper attempted to honor his obligations respecting classified information, whereas Snowden did quite the opposite...serving as a one man arbiter about what needed to be disclosed. It is disappointing that Mr. Paul does not appear to recognize the distinction.

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