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Public Opinion and Grassroots Pressure Prove Key
By Ted Lewis, Global Exchange Newsletter, Winter 2006
The week before Thanksgiving, while President Bush was out of the country, the Congressional debate over the US occupation of Iraq finally broke into the open. It started with a Senate vote of 79 to 19 to call 2006 a year of “transition
By Eric Schmeltzer
As soon as Congress reconvenes, Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) should introduce this resolution and find someone in the House to introduce the same. Explanation following:
Congresswoman Waters Denounces the President's Decision to Permit the NSA to Spy On the American Public
Contact: Mikael Moore (202) 225-2201
Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-35) expressed outrage and concern about President Bush's decision to bypass the US Constitution and laws to permit the National Security Agency ("NSA") to spy on American citizens.
By Edward M. Kennedy, The Boston Globe
The president is not above the law; he is not King George. Yet, with sorrow, we are now learning that in this great land we have an administration that has refused to follow well-crafted, longstanding procedures that require the president to get a court order before spying on people within the United States. With outrage, we learn that this administration believes that it does not have to follow the law of the land.
Contact: Dena Graziano 202-226-6888
Conyers and 26 Other Members Submit Resolution of Inquiry in House; Members Seek Documents from Attorney General Authorizing Secret Surveillance
Representative John Conyers, Jr., (D-MI) House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member, along with 26 other Members today submitted a comprehensive resolution of inquiry regarding the National Security Agency's warrantless wiretapping program on U.S. soil. If reported favorably, the resolution would instruct the Attorney General to turn over documents in his possession authorizing the warrantless electronic surveillance and the legal recommendations to do so within 14 days, subject to any necessary redactions or security classifications.
The Associated Press
Washington - Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter said Wednesday he remains skeptical about a government surveillance program despite an explanation from Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
U.S. Congressional Candidate John L. Wolfe Endorses Congressman Conyers' Resolutions to Censure Bush
Ohio attorney stands behind effort to investigate wrongdoing by Bush Administration
In a statement made today, U.S. Congressional Candidate John L. Wolfe (OH-13) has endorsed House Resolutions 635, 636 and 637, as introduced by U.S. Congressman John Conyers (MI-14) earlier this week.
In 1968, Martin Luther King told us: “If we do not act, we shall surely be dragged down the long, dark, and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess ... strength without sight.
When Richard Nixon abused power, Congress held a serious, bi-partisan investigation that resulted in articles of impeachment. Strong evidence suggests that George Bush and Dick Cheney launched an illegal war and lied to Congress, spied on Americans without court approval, leaked classified information, produced phony news reports, imprisoned without charge and tortured, targeted civilians and used illegal weapons. Ask your Congress Member to cosponsor House Resolution 635 for an investigation.
Published on Monday, December 19, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
By US Senator Robert C. Byrd
December 19, 2005
Senator Byrd on Monday expressed his strong concerns about possible violations of the Constitution in the Bush Administration's admitted practice of spying on American citizens:
Tuesday, December 6, 2005
1. Neil Abercrombie
2. Henry A. Waxman
3. William D. Delahunt
4. Martin T. Meehan
Congresswoman Louise Slaughter has posted a petition demanding hearings on Bush's spying here:
Contact: Reid Cherlin 202-225-5635
“Neither the President himself, nor anyone else in the White House can authorize an
order to spy on Americans without a warrant
News from U.S. Representatives Zoe Lofgren and Rick Boucher
CONTACT:Kyra Jennings, 202-225-3072 (Lofgren); Amanda Potter, 202-225-3861 (Boucher)
Washington, DC – Seventeen Members of the House Judiciary Committee today called on House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Sensenbrenner to convene hearings to investigate the President ordering the National Security Agency (NSA) to engage in espionage of persons inside the United States without obtaining court-ordered warrants. Below is the text of the letter:
Democrats plan sharp rebuke of pre-war intelligence, Iraq war in massive new congressional report
By Larisa Alexandrovna and John Byrne, www.RawStory.com
House Judiciary Committee Democrats, spearheaded by Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), are set to release possibly the sharpest congressional critique to date surrounding Iraq, RAW STORY has learned.
The report, titled "The Constitution in Crisis: The Downing Street Minutes and Deception, Manipulation, Torture, Retribution and Coverups in the Iraq War," is slotted to be made available to the public Tuesday. RAW STORY acquired a copy of the book’s cover and some additional information about the document today.
According to Democratic aides, the report will focus on alleged manipulation of pre-war intelligence by the White House, specifically covering such topics as the Downing Street Minutes as well as the White House position on the Geneva Conventions and international law as regards its policies toward prisoners of war.
Senate Turns Down Patriot Act Extension
POSTED: 12:46 pm EST December 16, 2005
UPDATED: 2:37 pm EST December 16, 2005
WASHINGTON -- The Senate on Friday refused to reauthorize major portions of the USA Patriot Act after critics complained they infringed too much on Americans' privacy and liberty, dealing a huge defeat to the Bush administration and Republican leaders.
By Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey
"Americans and Iraqis continue to die while House Republicans play political games," said Rep. Woolsey.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey (D-Petaluma) led 17 Members of Congress in protesting today's Republican measure, H.Res.612, because it calls for a continued, open-ended presence of American troops in Iraq. "I congratulate the Iraqis for their successful election, but we must have an open debate on Iraq on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, said Woolsey. "Americans and Iraqis continue to die while House Republicans play political games."
Kucinich Introduces Bipartisan Legislation To Allow Iraqi Parliament To Vote On The Future Of US Occupation
Kucinich Introduces Bipartisan Legislation To Allow Iraqi Parliament - Not US House of Representatives - To Vote On The Future Of US Occupation
Kucinich/Paul Legislation Would Have Sovereign Iraq Vote On The Future Of US Occupation
Rumor has it Congressman Dennis Kucinich will introduce this resolution:
Expressing the sense of Congress that the new permanent Council of Representatives of Iraq should debate and vote on whether or not the continued U.S. military presence in Iraq is desired by the Government of Iraq.
By David Swanson
The CRS report for Feinstein about whether or not Congress had access to the same intelligence on Iraq as the Bush administration, comes to a surprising answer: No.
But, Jonathan Schwartz points out that a section of the report says
Bush and McCain Reach Deal on Treatment of Torture Suspects
By Brian Knowlton, The International Herald Tribune
Washington - The White House, after weeks of resistance, agreed today to Senator John McCain's call for a law specifically banning cruel or inhuman treatment of terror suspects anywhere in the world.
On December 14, 2005, Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) moved on the House floor for conferees on the Defense Appropriations Bill to accept the McCain amendment relating to prohibition on cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment of persons under custody or control of the United States government.
Los Angeles Times - December 14, 2005 - By Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The Pentagon is in the early stages of drafting a request for up to $100 billion more for military costs in Iraq and Afghanistan, lawmakers say, a figure that would push spending related to the wars toward half a trillion dollars.
Bob Barr says military dictatorship close
By Paul Joseph Watson & Alex Jones, prisonplanet.com
Former Republican Congressman and CIA official Bob Barr says that there is a danger recent developments describe a trend of America slipping into a totalitarian society and that the Bush administration are doing everything in their power to see that this happens.
By Joe Libertelli, PDA
An April 22, 2005 article by Elizabeth Schulte entitled "Why Inside-Outside is Getting Nowhere/Backing Democrats has Pulled the Anti-war Movement to the Right" was recently resurrected and forwarded to the UFPJ list by Dave Silver. In it, Ms. Schulte pulled a long quote from my very short article, "Transformation of the Democratic Party: John Kerry's Statement on the Iraq War; Political Ecology 101" yet still managed to get it completely out of context and reverse its meaning. Its full text can be found at http://www.pdamerica.org/articles/news/kerry_position.php.
The Kucinich Plan to Bring Our Troops Home
"The war in Iraq is over and the occupation has turned into a quagmire. The United States troops have become the targets of criminals and terrorists who are flowing into Iraq for the chance to kill Americans. The cost of the occupation keeps rising: The President has already asked for more than $155 billion to pay for it, and there is no end in sight. The United Nations is now in an impossible situation, where most of the members view the war and occupation of Iraq as a U.S. folly. Under these circumstances, the UN is unlikely to help. And UN assistance with a U.S. occupation would not allow the establishment of an Iraqi government that was acceptable to the Iraqi people.
For Immediate Release
December 8, 2005
House Panel Keeps Alive Hinchey Measure To Obtain All White House Drafts Of 2003 State of the Union Address That Contained False Iraq Uranium Claims
"Iraq Tests Party Unity"
By Erin P. Billings,Roll Call Staff
Roll Call -December 8, 2005
House Democrats on Wednesday worked to hit the restart button on their Iraq war message, talking up their unity and trying to downplay suggestions that their policy disagreements are damaging them politically.
The President's Speech on Iraq Reconstruction
By Rep. Henry A. Waxman
Wednesday 07 December 2005
The President's claims today are mindboggling. Either he doesn't understand the facts or simply doesn't want to face them. The reconstruction of Iraq has been an enormous boondoggle - not an example of "quiet, steady progress." Halliburton has repeatedly overcharged American taxpayers through fraud, waste, and abuse. The U.S. officials in charge of the reconstruction have been incompetent and, in some cases, corrupt. And billions of dollars have been squandered without increasing oil or electricity production.
Tuesday, December 6, 2005
Washington, DC – On the day before the president delivers another speech on the war in Iraq, Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Carl Levin and Senator Jack Reed called on the president to provide a real strategy for success in Iraq. In a letter to the president, the Senators called on Bush to deliver more than a public relations document to the American people and our troops and to provide a strategy with benchmarks by which our progress can be measured.
The text of the letter follows below: