Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The NSA scandal: A great opportunity for Democrats

The latest from Glenn Greenwald on the NSA scandal is, of course, a must-read. This should whet your appetite:

Ever since the NSA scandal began, Bush followers, led by Karl Rove, and even some frightened Democrats, have loudly insisted that this scandal is actually beneficial for Republicans, because they can use it to depict Democrats as weak on national security. Democrats want to hang up when Osama calls, while Bush is being aggressive in protecting our children from being blown up. As a result, they claimed, Republicans want this scandal to last as long as possible because it will only benefit Republicans politically and damage Democrats by highlighting their vulnerabilities.

While spouting that bravado, the Administration's actions reveal that they fear this scandal and want more than anything for it to disappear. At every turn, they have tried to prevent a meaningful investigation into the legality of their actions. If the NSA scandal is really the political weapon which the GOP can use to bash Democrats as being weak on national security, wouldn't the White House be doing the opposite -- that is, encouraging every hearing and investigation possible?

The supplemental claim we hear most from the Administration is that this scandal is dying. It will all fade away with some nice legislation designed to render legal the President's four years of deliberate law-breaking. But the NSA scandal continues to dominate the news. Every day brings more conflicts, more disputes, more internecine fighting among Republicans. Indeed, Republicans are all fighting with each other on virtually every aspect of this scandal -- when have we ever seen that?

Exactly. This is a scandal in and of itself, but it's also a rare opportunity for Democrats to pounce both on Bush's abuse of power and on deep divisions within the Republican ranks.

Don't believe the White House spin on this one.

And Democrats... don't let us down.


Some great blogs are commenting on this post and the NSA scandal more generally. For example: Hullabaloo, Booman Tribune, The Heretik, The Next Hurrah, Taylor Marsh, and State of the Day.

And this, in particular, from Obsidian Wings: "Regardless of where you stand on the NSA wiretap issue, it's a matter that cries out for Congressional hearings. It concerns important constitutional principles -- the rule of law, the separation of powers, and of course the fourth amendment. The best you can say about its legality is that it's debatable. And a failure to inquire into it would leave unchallenged the idea that the President can do what he likes without bothering to tell anyone, except for a few members of Congress sworn to absolute secrecy."

Bookmark and Share


Post a Comment

<< Home