Monday, January 09, 2006

NSA Dupes Intelligence Committee

Blanton and Ashton's made a good point today when they asked why the head of the NSA can defend domestic spying to the public but he can't to the House Intelligence Committee.

Let me be clear: I vehemently reject the notion that the President as Commander in Chief, or in any other capacity, had then or has now the legal or Constitutional authority to order you or any other intelligence agency to conduct such surveillance of Americans outside the bounds of the FISA statute. Accordingly, I request that you order any programs similar to those reported (of warrant-less surveillance) to be suspended until a full and thorough Congressional review of this matter is completed, and that you provide to the Congressional intelligence committees, in a forthcoming manner, all information about any related activities. Further, my consultations with counsel have left me doubtful that such activities by NSA share the protection of covert action under which the President can minimize the number of Members who are briefed.

Frogsdong added that Congressman Rush Holt (D-NJ) sits on the Intelligence Committe and can't be trusted to represent 650,000 citizens. I think the jab is slightly under the belt, as everybody has been in the dark about the spying except the administration.


At 1:17 PM, Blogger DBK said...

Hmm. Maybe I wasn't clear enough. FIrst of all, the text you quote was from Congressman Holt's letter to NSA Director Alexander, so it wasn't me making a good point, it was Holt. Second, what I said was that Holt is the elected representative of 650,000 taxpaying Americans, my point being that he could be trusted, given in addition his position on the House Intelligence Committee, to hear classified info. So I don't know who was supposed to be jabbing who under the belt, but I don't want anyone to think I was jabbing Holt. I actually wrote: You'd think the man [Holt] would be somewhat trusted considering he is a US congressman and represents 650,000 New Jerseyans. Instead, he got a lot of smoke blown up his tushy by NSA director Keith B. Alexander when Holt and others were questioning Alexander last December about domestic spying.


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