Skip to comments.Senate Coverage -- (November '05)
Posted on 11/01/2005 5:12:40 AM PST by OXENinFLA
Since "Free Republic is an online gathering place for independent, grass-roots conservatism on the web. We're working to roll back decades of governmental largesse, to root out political fraud and corruption, and to champion causes which further conservatism in America.", I and others think it's a good idea to centralize what the goes on in the Senate (or House).
So if you see something happening on the Senate/House floor and you don't want to start a new thread to ask if anyone else just heard what you heard, you can leave a short note on who said what and about what and I'll try and find it the next day in THE RECORD. Or if you see a thread that pertains to the Senate, House, or pretty much any GOV'T agency please link your thread here.
If you have any suggestions for this thread please feel free to let me know.
Here's a few helpful links.
C-SPAN what a great thing. Where you can watch or listen live to most Government happenings.
C-SPAN 1 carries the HOUSE.
C-SPAN 2 carries the SENATE.
C-SPAN 3 (most places web only) carries a variety of committee meetings live or other past programming.
OR FEDNET has online feed also.
A great thing about our Government is they make it really easy for the public to research what the Politicians are doing and saying (on the floor anyway).
THOMAS where you can see a RECORD of what Congress is doing each day. You can also search/read a verbatim text of what each Congressmen/women or Senator has said on the floor or submitted 'for the record.' [This is where the real juicy stuff can be found.]
Also found at Thomas are Monthly Calendars for the Senate Majority and Senate Minority
And Monthly Calendars for the House Majority and Roll Call Votes can be found here.
The Founders' Constitution
THE WHITE HOUSE
THE WAR DEPARTMENT (aka The Dept. of Defense)
LIVE DoD Briefings
NEWSEUM: TODAY'S FRONT PAGES
Boy...it sounds like Reyes and others are trying to get out of a vote..that one of theirs is responsible for...
Whiney babies...having to put your money where you mouth is...hurts donut!
Duncan Hunter is up.
Jeez louise...the dems won't even let Hunter talk...or read the e-mail...
and the dems are trying to say that the GOP don't care about the troops well being while they are surrendering...LOL
The dems are melting down...and the GOP better stay passionate...
On the LIVE THREAD there was a link to THE Corner at National Review by Lopez...that says this is gonna blow up in the GOP faces...and make THEM look like losers...GACK
It won't blow up in their faces if they stick to their guns.
Uh oh, the "coward" word has been used.
They are quite a rowdy bunch, these congresscritters.
I went to turn on the TV to see why the sound quit on the computer and they have the "word taken down" thingy...
Do you know who was talking and what was being said...to warrant this???
The Rep from Ohio read an email from a military Gen. or Colonel that said "only cowards cut and run." The place went wild.
Thanks....so, she was speaking "truth to power" and to put in time out for it, huh?
How do you think this is going???
It's going fine. There is a caller to C-Span who says that we are poisoning the Iraqis with uranium. The next caller was drunk, I think.
Reid is on the Senate Floor now
Why do they always have to go into someone's history to prove their bona fides today. Our opinions are of value as well, whether or not we were in the military. I matter. They fight for my rights too. It is not an attack on someone's patriotism to say they are just dead wrong.
Recall that on October 5, McCain's S.AMND.1977 passed on a 90-9 vote as part of H.R. 2863, Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2006. And also that he attempted to attach the same amendment to S.1042, National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2006, as S.AMND.1556 and S.AMND.1557, back in July. Those additions were withdrawn in the Senate, after being proposed.
I mistakenly asserted that the "torture amendment" was not part of S.1042, in my post at http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1522703/posts?page=95#95. But on November 4, the Senate did attach exactly the same McCain amendment to S.1042 that was withdrawn in July, and added to the DoD Appropriations Act in October.
Mr. McCAIN. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that at the conclusion of my remarks, letters from the Navy League of the United States and from Abraham Sofaer of the Hoover Institution to Patrick Leahy, which I think are important documents as far as constitutional aspects of this issue, be printed in the Record.The entire exchange and exhibits is long. I haven't read through them yet, but plan to in order to figure out how the McCain "anti torture" rhetoric adds to existing statutory and treaty law.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered. (See exhibit 1.)
Mr. McCAIN. Mr. President, this amendment is identical to the one that was adopted by a vote of 90 to 9 on the appropriations bill, and it does the following: Establishes the Army Field Manual as the uniform standard for the interrogation of Department of Defense detainees and, two, prohibits cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment of persons in the detention of the U.S. Government.
Because of the extraordinary support for this legislation and its importance to our men and women in uniform, it is imperative that these provisions remain on the appropriations measure which is now in conference, although I understand the conferees have not been appointed on the House side.
There is a rumor that with the inclusion in the authorizing bill, then an argument will be made to have it taken out of the appropriations bill, and then the authorizing bill would never reach agreement in conference. That is a bit Machiavellian. Most of all, it is very important because it thwarts the will of 90 Members of the Senate, an overwhelming majority of the House of Representatives, and an overwhelming majority of the American people.
I hope very sincerely that the inclusion of this provision on the authorization bill, which is important in the authorizing process, does not in any way give an excuse to have it removed from the appropriations bill.
I commend Congressman Murtha for his leadership and efforts to date to offer a motion to instruct conferees to keep this amendment intact without modification. I hope that no one seeks procedural maneuvers to thwart the overwhelming majorities in both Chambers.
I thank the leadership of the Armed Services Committee, particularly our leader Senator Warner, as well as the ranking Democrat, Senator Levin, who have provided guidance, leadership, and encouragement on this very important issue. I am very grateful for their leadership.
Let me be clear.
Mr. WARNER. Will the Senator yield?
Mr. McCAIN. I would be glad to yield.
Mr. WARNER. I ask unanimous consent to be an original cosponsor, as I have been consistently on the Senator's amendments. He will recall that our first meeting was when I was Secretary of the Navy when he returned from Vietnam. So our relationship on this issue has a long history, and I firmly believe it is in the best interest of the Department of Defense that this manual be the guide for our men and women of the U.S. military. I commend the Senator.
Mr. McCAIN. I thank the Senator. I ask unanimous consent that both Senator Warner and Senator Levin be added as original cosponsors of the amendment.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
... Mr. McCAIN. I thank my friend.
Mr. President, I say again on this issue, No. 1, it is not going away. It is not going away. If, through some parliamentary maneuver, temporarily the will of the majority of both Houses, both bicameral and bipartisan, is thwarted, it will be on every vehicle that goes through this body because you cannot override the majority of the American people and their elected representatives in a functioning democracy. ...
The second part of this amendment is a prohibition against cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment. If that doesn't sound new, that is because it is not. The prohibition has been a longstanding principle in both law and policy in the United States. To mention a few examples: The prohibitions are contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which the U.S. is a signatory; and the binding Convention Against Torture, negotiated by the Reagan administration and ratified by the Senate.
Nevertheless, the administration has held that the prohibition does not legally apply to foreigners held overseas. [Cboldt: I'd like a citation to that proposition] They can, apparently, be treated inhumanely. That means America is the only country in the world that asserts a legal right to engage in cruel and inhumane treatment. How far have we come? ...
I hope we could adopt this by voice vote at the appropriate time. Since we voted recently by a vote of 90 to 9, I don't see any reason why we should force people to be on record again.
H.R.3199 - This is the active bill
Summary of Senate amendments to H.R.3199
S.1389 - Senate Version (useful only as raw comparison with H.R.3199)
Sunsetting provisions of Patriot Act - CRS-RL34499
Links to additional Patriot Act Documents (FOIA requests, etc.)
Nov 17 Letter from 6 Senators to Specter, Leahy, Roberts & Rockefeller
Article regarding the effect of the letter (excerpts quoted below)
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, is in talks with Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont, the panel's senior Democrat, and other lawmakers to build support for the accord [an agreement between House and Senate reelating to details of what the Senate would pass].
Specter and his House counterpart, Representative James Sensenbrenner, a Wisconsin Republican, are trying to seal an agreement so it can be approved by both chambers before lawmakers leave at the end of this week for the Thanksgiving recess.
``We're working on it,'' Specter said. When asked about Feingold's threat to filibuster, he joked, ``He's got strong lungs.''
Senator Richard Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat, said Republican congressional leaders shouldn't underestimate the opposition to the accord.
Durbin said he would support Feingold's efforts to block a vote on the agreement. He declined to say whether enough Democrats would support the effort to sustain a filibuster, which requires 60 votes to overcome.
Durbin, Feingold, Sununu and three other senators sent a letter to Specter, Leahy and Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Pat Roberts and Jay Rockefeller, the panel's senior Democrat, saying they would oppose the agreement unless ``significant'' changes were made. ...
Republican Senators Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Larry Craig of Idaho and Democratic Senator Ken Salazar of Colorado also signed the letter.
... the House legislation provided fewer checks on government authority than the Senate version.
Senator Jeff Sessions, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said he was concerned Democrats and civil-liberties groups are trying to weaken the FBI's ability to conduct terrorism investigations.
In the current agreement, which he supports, ``We actually have more restrictions on terrorist investigators than on prosecutors and police all over America,'' said Sessions, an Alabama Republican.
Leahy still holds out hope a broadly supported agreement can be reached, said Tracy Schmaler, his spokeswoman.
Nonetheless, a few links to FR threads, and to Senator Craig material ...
Sources: Tentative Patriot Act Deal Struck - Posted 11/16/2005 1:12:23 PM EST
Senators Threaten to Hold Up Patriot Act - Posted 11/17/2005 1:52:48 PM EST
Extension of Patriot Act Faces Threat of Filibuster - Posted 11/18/2005 1:04:35 AM EST
November 16, 2005
Senators Craig, Durbin, Feingold, Sununu, Salazar, and Murkowski
"To support this bill, we need to see significant movement back toward the Senate position in the following areas: (1) Section 215 (library and other sensitive business records); (2) Section 505 (National Security Letters); (3) sunset provisions; and (4) Section 213 (sneak and peek). We will communicate with the conferees this afternoon and provide specific suggestions to improve the bill in these four important areas.
"For the past several years, our bipartisan coalition has been working together to highlight and fix the civil liberties problems posed by the Patriot Act. We introduced the SAFE Act to address those problems, while still maintaining important law enforcement powers needed to combat terrorism. We have worked too long and too hard to allow this conference report to eliminate the modest protections for civil liberties that were agreed to unanimously in the Senate.
At the time the PATRIOT Act was enacted, it was timely, necessary, and evidence of Congress' commitment to national security. I voted for the PATRIOT Act. However, it was not a perfect bill. In the time since the act was voted upon, many provisions have come under scrutiny.
"It is possible to fight terrorism without eroding the Constitution and the rights of Americans, and our bill is designed to restore that critical balance in the aggressive enforcement of our laws."
-Senator Larry Craig
It has become clear to me and many others that some adjustments must be made in order to protect the liberties of law-abiding individuals. In order to make these adjustments, I introduced the Security and Freedom Enhancement (SAFE) Act of 2005.
The SAFE Act makes a few narrowly-targeted adjustments to the PATRIOT Act, which are designed to preserve the rights of Americans without reducing the federal government's ability to fight the war on terrorism.
I originally introduced this legislation during last year's session of Congress. After further refinement of the enhancements it brings to the PATRIOT Act, I recently reintroduced the SAFE Act for consideration by the current session of Congress. The Senate's consideration of the SAFE Act is timely, as some provisions of the PATRIOT Act are set to expire at the end of 2005, and will require reauthorization by Congress in order to be extended.
Larry Craig, US Senator from Idaho: Securing Freedom Worldwide Issue Briefing
National Strategy in Iraq, New Document from the NSC
Thanks for this!
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