Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Democrats Finally Growing Some New Teeth

I'm watching C-SPAN. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) just announced (I think about 4:00 p.m. EST) to reporters that Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) has motioned for a closed session of congress for the purpose of getting answers about why the Senate Intelligence Committee refuses to conduct its long-promised investigation regarding the role of faulty intelligence and the potential misleading of the American people in the decision to go to war.

"Closed Session" means not open to the public in anyway--the gallery is cleared, all electronic recording devices are turned off, and all other Senate discussion must stop. Beyond allowing for a more uncensored and gloves-off kind of discussion, it also allows classified information to be discussed if necessary, which is appropriate given that we are talking about the Iraq war. A Closed Session is a RARE occurance.

Senate Majority Leader, Bill Frist (R-Tennessee), who is now under investigation for potential insider trading, just came to the mic to speak to reporters. He is LIVID because Harry Reid did not tell him a Closed Session would be called (once a motion to do so is seconded, it has to happen). Uh-oh, here come the GOP "talking points" to listen for: "Democratic stunt", "scare tactics", "Democratic hijack", "never been done this way", "keeps the American people out."

Evidently, the frozen part of the investigation (Phase 2) would touch on what role the administration played in the inaccurate communication of intelligence. The committee has stalled the study for well over a year.

Don't get me wrong, I still believe Democrats need to put better policy options on the table rather than merely whining like sore losers. Then again, keeping in check an administration and a congress that puts its own agenda ahead of national security is a full-time job. And by the way, the Republicans, who control every branch of government at the moment, get the "pseudo-victim" award for repeatedly boo-hooing at everything Democrats do. Cry me a corporate tax-cut. It is HIGH time Democrats began playing hardball with the iron curtain of secrecy and unchecked power of our entirely Republican-controlled administration. Hopefully, this is only the beginning.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Troy. I just learned early this evening that my brother's best friend, Doug, a 34 year old with a wife and 2 daughters is being shipped to Iraq next week. I don't know much about the military but as I understand it, Doug is a reserve-reservist (he's on what my brother calls the "oh, shit" list) and has never been combat trained until two weeks ago. I've known this guy for 15 years and if anything happened to him I would grab my sleeping bag, take the train down to D.C. and pitch camp in front of the White House with a "I Need Answers" sign, so Harry Reid's bold move couldn't have come on a more poignant day for me.

3:24 PM  

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