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By Alexander Bolton
Sen. John Kerry is facing a dilemma.
With an eye towards running for president again in 2008, the Massachusetts Democrat has positioned himself as one of the most pugnacious critics of the Bush administration, often aligning himself with liberal activists. But at times, his aggressive anti-Bush rhetoric risks alienating other parts of his own party.
Kerry’s predicament was apparent this week as he took the lead among Democrats by calling for President Bush to fire his deputy chief of staff, Karl Rove, for Rove’s alleged role in revealing the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame.
By the Out of Iraq Congressional Caucus
Washington, DC – Today, the ‘Out of Iraq’ Congressional Caucus met for the third time since its formation in June 2005. The Caucus heard from House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Ike Skelton (MO-4) who provided the Caucus with his perspectives on the war in Iraq.
“I am pleased that Ranking Member Skelton was able to meet with us today. We invited Ranking Member Skelton because of his vast knowledge of military affairs and his understanding of the war in Iraq,
By David Swanson
When nine white men met and plotted at #10 Downing Street in London, England, on July 23, 2002, they probably did not anticipate that three years later a small group of U.S. Congress Members, led by black men and women, would make that meeting a focus of public attention. But when Congress Members John Conyers, Barbara Lee, Maxine Waters, Charles Rangel, Sheila Jackson Lee, and others hold town hall forums all over this country on the three-year anniversary of the meeting recorded in the Downing Street Minutes, they will be demanding an investigation supported by a majority of Americans. Indeed, the outcome of their campaign could be more than the erosion of support for the war in Iraq; it could be the erosion of American credulity for the next several wars that presidents try to sell us on false pretenses.
Several House Democrats plan to introduce a Resolution of Inquiry calling on the White House and other Bush agencies to produce any and all documents relating to the outing of a covert CIA agent, RAW STORY has learned.
The move was first reported by blogger Murray Haas.
Rush Holt (D-NJ) is leading the push, joined by Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Jay Insley (D-WA). Holt introduced a similar measure in 2003, which was voted down.
A veteran Democratic aide told RAW STORY Wednesday evening that the Resolution will likely be referred to the House Intelligence and Government oversight committees.
By David Sirota
Massachusetts Rep. John Tierney (D) today announced that all Democrats on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence today sent a letter to President Bush demanding that White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove's security clearance be revoked in the wake of revelations that he was involved in the leak of a covert CIA operative's name.
This is a major development - Democrats of all stripes on the committee are coming together to do what's right. And as I wrote yesterday, historical precedent shows that the absolute least the White House must do is make sure a security risk like Rove is not allowed access to anymore classified information. Let's see what President Bush's formal response to this letter will be.
By David Sirota
New York Rep. Peter King (R) is the latest example of how the modern-day Republican Paty is dominated by wild-eyed right-wing lunatics determined to hold onto power, no matter how indefensible their behavior is. On television and in newspapers, King is trying to make Karl Rove's treasonous leak of classified information into a positive for the White House, while once again resorting to making physically threatening statements about retribution.
As Atrios notes, on the right-wing cable show Scarborough Country, King said the media "who gave [Ambassador Joe Wilson] such a free ride...they're the ones to be shot." Right, we shouldn't thank Wilson for exposing the fact that the Iraq War, which has caused so many casualties, was based on lies. We should shoot reporters.
The Honorable Tom Davis
Committee on Government Reform
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Mr. Chairman:
I am writing regarding recent reports that provide new details about the involvement of Karl Rove, the White House Deputy Chief of Staff, in the disclosure of Valerie Plame's identity as an agent of the Central Intelligence Agency.
An article in the Washington Post  this morning and recent disclosures in Newsweek and other reports  are extraordinary. If true, they indicate that the President's top political advisor played a central role in the outing of a covert CIA agent. According to the Washington Post account, Mr. Rove's attorney insists that Mr. Rove did not identify Ms. Plame "by name." But Mr. Rove did identify her as the spouse of former Ambassador Joseph Wilson IV, which would seem to be a distinction without a difference.
Senator Barbara Boxer Speech at the Commonwealth Club
San Francisco July 6, 2005
It is a great honor to be back at the Commonwealth Club.
When I decided to give a speech about Iraq, I knew I wanted to give it here. That’s because of the pivotal role the Commonwealth Club has played for more than 100 years, fostering real dialogue on the critical challenges that define the times in which we live.
Today, those challenges are vast, from the Supreme Court vacancy to the attack on Social Security. But the war in Iraq is the most daunting because the status quo—of Americans dying, of Iraqis dying, of young soldiers coming home by the thousands with injuries to mind and body—weighs so heavily on all Americans.
A letter penned by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) calling on Bush adviser Karl Rove to explain or resign over his role in outing a CIA agent has garnered a handful of signatories in the House, RAW STORY has learned.
Just 17 members have signed. Finding congressmembers to sign a letter during a Congressional recess is often difficult, and Conyers' office has extended a deadline for others to sign on until next Wednesday.
The current signers are Reps. John Conyers, Jr.; Maurice Hinchey; Sheila Jackson Lee; Sam Farr; Diane Watson; Barbara Lee; Zoe Lofgren; Danny Davis; Henry Waxman; Corrine Brown; Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick; Raul Grijalva; James McGovern; Bernie Sanders; Lynn Woolsey; Mike Honda; and Carolyn Maloney.
By David Sirota
You knew it was coming, didn't you? That's right - within 24 hours, the right-wing spin machine is up and working to transform the tragic London bombing into a way to attack progressives as weak on terrorism. Sadly, it is a tactic that continues to emasculate many Democrats, who still can't seem to find the guts to stand up to this nonsense.
Exhibit A is this morning's Wall Street Journal opinion page - the place that essentially re-prints talking points from the Republican National Committee. There James Taranto says that "certain people don't remember" that "an attack on a much worse scale happened in the U.S. less than four years ago." Really, James? Who are those people? Are you speaking of people who have become senile in that time?
By Dave Richardson
New Paltz - Last night, more than 500 people hung on Maurice Hinchey's every word.
The Hurley Democrat leaned into the podium and looked gravely at the audience.
"We are in danger of losing our republic," he said. He was far from joking.
The topic of discussion: the so-called Downing Street memos, a series of documents recounting conversations between British Prime Minister Tony Blair and high-ranking British officials in 2002, during the buildup to the war in Iraq.
The memos, which have reportedly been authenticated by British officials, paint a picture of a Bush administration apparently set on war with Iraq long before the decision to invade was supposedly made and bent on "fixing the facts and the intelligence around the policy."
By Hallie Arnold , DailyFreeman.com
NEW PALTZ - The Downing Street memos, a series of communications that some say proves the Bush administration fabricated its justification for the war in Iraq, should be the subject of a full-blown Congressional inquiry, U.S. Rep. Maurice Hinchey told the crowd assembled for a presentation on the memos on the SUNY New Paltz campus Thursday night.
But the lack of checks and balances in the "monolithic" government, in which both the Congress and Senate favor the administration, will make mounting such an investigation a difficult prospect for those lawmakers who have questioned and continue to question both the impetus for the war in Iraq, and America's continued involvement there, Hinchey, D-Hurley, said.
Hinchey To Host Two Community Forums
To Discuss Implications Of Downing Street Memos
Congressman Will Visit Binghamton and New Paltz To Highlight Bush Administration's Deception and Manipulation Of The American Public and Media Surrounding Iraq War
Washington, DC - Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) will hold two community forums next week to discuss the implications of the Downing Street memos and other information recently uncovered that further calls into question the Bush Administration's case for war in Iraq. Hinchey's first community forum on the Downing Street memos will take place on Wednesday, July 6 from 5:00-7:00pm at the Christ Episcopal Church located at the corner of Henry and Washington Streets in Binghamton. On Thursday, July 7, Hinchey will hold the second forum from 7:00-9:00pm at the Coykendall Science Building Auditorium at SUNY New Paltz.
The following letter, drafted by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), was issued to other House Democrats for signature this afternoon, and obtained by RAW STORY.
Conyers, the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, calls on Bush adviser Karl Rove to explain his role in the outing of a CIA agent or resign his office.
"We write in order to urge that you require your Deputy White House Chief of Staff, Karl Rove, to either come forward immediately to explain his role in the Valerie Plame matter or to resign from your Administration," the veteran Democrat writes. "High-ranking members of your Administration who are involved in any effort to smear a private citizen or to disseminate information regarding a CIA operative should be expected to meet a far higher standard of ethical behavior and forthrightness."
Talking Points Memo is Pursuing a New Aspect of the Story
By Congressman John Conyers
Saturday, July 2
How do the facts and intelligence get fixed around the policy, as the highest ranking British government officials have alleged the Bush Administration was doing to justify the Iraq war?
One way would be by having the Vice President hover over the shoulders of intelligence analysts. This paragraph caught my eye from a 2003 Washington Post article. Notice how close the wording of the last sentence is to the language in the Downing Street Minutes:
"Vice President Cheney and his most senior aide made multiple trips to the CIA over the past year to question analysts studying Iraq's weapons programs and alleged links to al Qaeda, creating an environment in which some analysts felt they were being pressured to make their assessments fit with the Bush administration's policy objectives, according to senior intelligence officials."
Next Steps Taken on Downing Street; Letter to Speaker on Another GOP Abuse of Power; Bush Hits Another Low
By Congressman John Conyers
Thursday, June 30
This is my inaugural blog since the new registration and rss systems were created, and I very much look forward to being able to work with you all and review your comments again.
At least Three Important Developments to Report on Today:
Today, 51 Members and I took the Downing Street Investigation to the next level by filing a Freedom of Information Act request with the White House, the Pentagon, and the State Department. We also made a formal request for hearings with the Chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary, International Relations, Armed Services, and Intelligence. Raw Story has a copy of both letters.
Signers of June 30, 2005, FOIA Request
John Conyers, Jr.
Sheila Jackson Lee
John D. Dingell
Dennis J. Kucinich
Michael R. McNulty
William Lacy Clay
Carolyn B. Maloney
Raúl M. Grijalva
John F. Tierney
Donald M. Payne
Chris Van Hollen
Louis M. Slaughter
Grace F. Napolitano
Major R. Owens
Conyers and 51 Members File FOIA Request on Downing Street Minutes; Members Formally Seek Hearings in House
Representative John Conyers, Jr., (D-MI) House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member, along with 51 other Members today submitted a broad and comprehensive FOIA request to the White House, the Department of Defense, and the Department of State seeking any and all documents and materials concerning the Downing Street Minutes and the lead up to the Iraq war, RAW STORY has learned.
In addition, the Members also formally requested that the House Committees on Judiciary, Armed Services, International Relations, and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence commence hearings on the Downing Street Minutes.
Letters are effective when they're in your own words. Don't copy this one. Just learn from it.
Dear Senator Coburn:
Thank you for your prompt response. I feel I must, with respect, disagree
with your decision not to support a Congressional Resolution of Inquiry into
the President's long-ago decided upon war against Iraq.
The Downing Street Memos and other documents dated as early as 1999 clearly
illustrate this administration's determination to launch an unprovoked war
of aggression against Iraq. The marketing of this lethal "product", as
White House spokesman Scott McLellan has so callously labeled it, was based
Several Democratic congressmembers, led by ranking House Judiciary member John Conyers (D-MI), have opted to move planned Downing Street memo-related speeches on the House floor Tuesday evening to Thursday, RAW STORY has learned.
The handful of members were forced to delay their plans after the Republican leadership scheduled several late-night votes, Conyers press secretary Dena Graziano told RAW STORY. They now plan speeches Thursday evening, though they could be thwarted again if votes are scheduled or Congress is adjourned.
Among those who have expressed interest in speaking are Democratic Reps. John Conyers, Sheila Jackson Lee, Maxine Waters, Barbara Lee, John Lewis, Jay Inslee, Julia Carson, Louise Slaughter, Major Owens and Barney Frank, aides say.
Washington, D.C. - House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Congressman John Murtha will hold a news conference today at 2:15 p.m. to discuss the war in Iraq and the questions Democrats would like the President to answer in his speech on Iraq tonight.
WHO: House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Congressman John Murtha, Ranking Member, Defense Appropriations Subcommittee
WHAT: News Conference to Discuss War in Iraq and questions Democrats would like the President to address in his speech
WHEN: Tuesday, June 28 at 2:15 p.m.
WHERE: H-204, The Capi
Following up on yesterday’s post about the general who confirmed in a 2003 briefing the secret air war, known as the "spikes of activity" which preceded Congressional authorization for the Iraq War, we come to find out, care of Spoof News editor JJ, that the same general, Gen. T. Michael Moseley, was nominated by Bush on May 16 as chief of staff of the Air Force to succeed Gen. John P. Jumper who has served in the position since September 2001.
It wasn’t all that long ago when a young conservative congressman from Illinois named Donald Rumsfeld spoke eloquently on the floor of the House of Representatives during the Vietnam War about the need for the Johnson administration to speak more truthfully about that conflict.
A 1966 article in the Chicago Tribune quoted Rumsfeld as saying the following: “The administration should clarify its intent in Viet Nam,’ he said. ‘People lack confidence in the credibility of our government.’ Even our allies are beginning to suspect what we say, he charged. ‘It’s a difficult thing today to be informed about our government even without all the secrecy,’ he said. ‘With the secrecy, it’s impossible. The American people will do what’s right when they have the information they need.
By Josephine Hearn
Democrats are eyeing several parliamentary maneuvers to prod Congress into investigating the so-called Downing Street memo and other recently disclosed documents that they contend shows that the Bush administration manipulated prewar intelligence to build support for the war in Iraq.
Although any Democratic move will almost certainly fail in the face of vigorous Republican opposition, such maneuvers would constitute the first steps toward filing articles of impeachment, a bold step that some Democrats have left as an open question in recent weeks.
“If you read the record of the writing of the Constitution, ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ had a very particular meaning at the time of the drafting of the Constitution. It certainly didn’t mean lying about sex, but it might well mean lying to the Congress about a large public purpose such as Iraq,
Congressman John Conyers, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and Congresswoman Barbara Lee are asking their colleagues in the House of Representatives to join them on the evening of June 28 to discuss the Downing Street Minutes on the floor of the House.
They need our help. Please contact your Congress Member right away and ask them to contact the Judiciary Committee staff and commit to taking part.
Below is a letter that has been circulated to Congress members:
Join the 'Out of Iraq' Caucus
On June 28, 2005 for an Hour of Special Order on the Downing Street Minutes
DOWNING STREET UPDATE
Larisa Alexandrovna - Raw Story Staff
Senator Kerry (D - MA) sends letter to Senate Intelligence Committee pressing for answers on the Downing Street Memo and other Downing documents. The letter leaked to Raw Story, is also signed by Senators Johnson, Corzine, Reed, Lautenberg, Boxer, Kennedy, Harkin, Bingaman, and Durbin. The text of the letter is below.
June 22, 2005
The Honorable Pat Roberts, Chairman
The Honorable John D. Rockefeller, IV, Vice Chairman
United States Senate
Select Committee on Intelligence
Washington, DC 20510
People's Weekly World Newspaper, 06/23/05 12:24
Lawmakers respond to public outcry
WASHINGTON — “Let Conyers in!
Full hearings transcript in searchable PDF: HERE
Testimony of Joseph Wilson
Testimony of Cindy Sheehan
Testimony of Ray McGovern
Testimony of John Bonifaz
Written Testimony of Ann Wright
Written Testimony of Karen Kwiatkowski
Thursday 23rd June 2005 (00h30) :
June 21, 2005
Ms. WATERS. Mr. Speaker, I am here this evening to talk about something new and wonderful that has happened in the Congress of the United States of America. I am here to talk about a new caucus that is named Out of Iraq Caucus. I am here to talk about the men and women of this House who have decided they can be silent no longer. I am here to talk about men and women who represent various points of view relative to support for the President from the time that he first announced he was going into Iraq to now. I am here to talk about why we have formed this caucus, what we plan to do, but more than that this evening, we are going to focus on our soldiers and those who are in Iraq serving this country, those who are there in harm’s way, those who have been killed in Iraq, those who are up at Walter Reed Hospital suffering from serious injuries, having lost limbs, having lost their eyesight, those who do not know what the future holds for them. We are going to focus on that this evening because it is extremely important for the families of these soldiers to know and understand that we support these soldiers. We know that many of them went there because they were called to duty. They were recruited to go to Iraq because their President asked them to do so, and they wanted to serve this country despite the fact they did not understand all of the reasons why. Many of them went to serve because they thought that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11. But, of course, we know now that Saddam Hussein was not responsible for 9/11, and many of the soldiers know that now.