Friday, January 06, 2006

Faux Outrage

Mike over at Born at the Crest of Empire (a great blog btw) updates us on the outrage of Senators Warner, Graham and McCain (aka the usual suspects):
When Bush signed the defense bill containing the torture amendment, it was hailed as a significant moment, but, at the same time, Bush also quietly signed an "interpretive signing statement" which states how the president intends to enact the law he just signed.


The problem is that this bill was overwhelmingly passed, spearheaded by Warner, Graham, and McCain specifically to stop Bush from torturing under this claim of executive power. So, needless to say, those are some angry republican senators.
Ah yes, those pesky "interpretive signings". I wrote awhile back, right after passage of the bill in fact, that there was no way Bush was going to allow himself to be constrained by the anti-torture legislation. Whether it's field manual changes, ignoring the legislation, or "interpretive signings", Bush see's Presidential power as unfettered during "time of war". That's his rationalization. That's how Bush can believe he's following the Constitution. If we didn't have this "War on Terror", then he'd consider checks and balances. But because we're "at war" then he can do whatever he wants. After all, isn't that what Lincoln did? (no, he didn't, but don't try and tell any wingnut that).

So back the the usual suspects. Frankly, the outrage of any Republican legislator is ridiculous. We've heard it before....many times. Graham saying that he wasn't going to allow the torture investigation to stop at some sergeant, McCain's outrage at torture, and Warner being .. well Warner. It's all window dressing to try and save the 2006 and 2008 elections. Any serious attempt to check Bush would result in a disaster for the Republican party, much more so than Bush. Bush knows it. The Senators know it. So they play this kabuki dance of outrage and Bush just goes about his dictatorial business.

Don't believe any legislative attempts to rein in Bush unless a) it happens after the 2006 elections and is instigated by a Democratically dominated house of Congress, or b) these "outraged" Congress folks actually like, do something.


At 2:01 PM, Anonymous WM Philadelphia independent voter said...

Today is May 09 2006 and I just finished listening to Terry Gross on NPR radio's Fresh Air (a local show to us proud Philadelphians). She interviewed the Boston Globe reporter Charlie Savage, who apparently 'broke' this story of the number, depth & character of this president's efforts to gain more and more independent executive power.

Thanks for YOUR posting on the matter - wish I had been a blog reader before now so I might have seen it sooner...

Back to work: Primary Elections in Penna is next Tues and we have work to do.

At 2:11 PM, Blogger GreyHair said...

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