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April 07, 2006

He's So Fein

One brief note - Rep. Cynthia McKinney sounds like she's got some issues ("much ado about a hairdo"? Cram it), but Tom DeLay accusing anyone of "incredible arrogance" is the hypocritical statement of the century.



A new political boyfriend, I mean. Since John McCain is now dead to me, I had to find a new maverick politician to swoon over. Someone who, against all the odds, speaks rationally and reasonably about the issues facing the United States. Someone that I could support in an election without checking my ethics at the door.

I have found that man.

Hello, kitten. What's your position on the death penalty?

This is Russ Feingold. Feingold is a Democratic senator from Wisconsin, home of all things jird (so they have to be good). I have to admit that I never took notice of this guy until he made the news by proposing that President Bush be censured over the illegal wiretapping fiasco. I am a Julie-come-lately.

Anyway, I kind of thought pushing for censure was a bad move (whipping the opposition into a frenzy and giving insane hardcore Bush supporters a point to rally against isn't a good thing), but after I read Feingold's statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee about why he felt it was necessary, I was swayed:

Where we disagree, apparently, is whether the Presidentís authority under Article II of the Constitution allows him to authorize warrantless surveillance without complying with FISA. You have said you think this is a close question. I do not believe he has such authority and I donít think itís a close question. We will continue to debate that Iím sure. But I think the fact that you have proposed legislation on this program undermines your argument that such presidential authority exists. Because if it does exist, then nothing that we can legislate, no matter how carefully crafted, is worth a hill of beans. For starters, your proposed bill may or may not cover what the NSA is now doing. You and I have no way of knowing because we have not been fully briefed on the program, and I am a member of the Intelligence Committee as well. But regardless, if the President has the inherent authority to authorize whatever surveillance he thinks is necessary, then he surely will ignore your law, just as he has ignored FISA on many occasions.

If Congress doesnít have the power to define the contours of the Presidentís Article II powers through legislation, then I have no idea why people are scrambling to draft legislation to authorize what they think the President is doing. If the Presidentís legal theory, which is shared by some of our witnesses today, is correct, then FISA is a dead letter, all of the supposed protections for civil liberties contained in the reauthorization of the Patriot Act that we just passed are a cruel hoax, and any future legislation we might pass regarding surveillance or national security is a waste of time and a charade. Under this theory, we no longer have a constitutional system consisting of three co-equal branches of government, we have a monarchy.

Balls. of. steel.

He had me at "hello."

So then I started Googling for information about this guy, since I need a Plan B now that McCain has jumped aboard the Crazy Train - and learned the following:

  • Feingold recently spoke in favor of the legalization of gay marriage.

  • He was the only member of the Senate to vote against the Patriot Act.

  • He voted against the war in Iraq because he didn't believe that the war was necessary or wise, but then he voted for the $87 billion to support the troops once the war was underway. That's not flip-flopping, that's voting sensically.

  • He's against the death penalty and has introduced legislation that would issue a moratorium until the system that administers the death penalty can be closely reviewed by an independent commission.

  • Every single time that Congress authorizes another pay raise for itself, Feingold votes against the raise. When these votes pass, Feingold returns his raise to the national treasury.

  • He kicked ass on The Daily Show.

What's not to love? Get this man to run in '08!

Posted by Highwaygirl on April 7, 2006 12:47 PM to the category Political Rants

Highway Girl -

You make a stong point for this guy. I'll have to keep checking him out. I always looked at McCain as a "viable option", but this guy is better. Wondering how the nation will accept him. But he is certainly someone I can get behind.


Posted by: Indigo Steve at April 9, 2006 04:35 AM
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