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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Bush threatens his second veto....

Herr Presidente, who never met a spending bill or law curtailing civil liberties that he didn't like, has roundaboutly threated a veto of the 57.5 billion dollar spending bill which is to fund the Justice Department and other federal agencies.

Why? Not due to any concerns over cost-cutting or budget over-runs, no.
Reuters reports: The White House has warned Congress that any weakening of the Patriot Act would prompt senior advisers to recommend that Bush veto the $57.5 billion bill to fund activities next year for the Justice Department and other federal agencies, which now contains Sanders' amendment.

And just what is Sander's amendment?

The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday defied President Bush by approving a measure making it harder for federal agents to secretly gather information on people's library reading habits and bookstore purchases.
The House voted 238-187 to scale back the government's powers to conduct secret investigations that were authorized by the Patriot Act, a post-Sept. 11 anti-terrorism law. ...
Under the Patriot Act, federal law enforcement authorities can get permission from a special court to investigate what books people buy at bookstores or borrow from libraries, even if they are not suspected of committing any crime.
If the House measure becomes law, which is still a long way off, authorities would have to revert to the more traditional method of convincing federal grand juries of likely criminal activities before starting such investigations.

Imagine that -- Congress actually standing up for the Constitution and demanding judicial review.

From an article in the Washington Post:
House Republican leaders are not accustomed to losing, and they did not hide their anger about the result. One aide to a House leader referred to the victorious coalition as "the crazies on the left and the crazies on the right, meeting in the middle."

Let's see -- 38 Republicans -- those must be the "crazies on the right" who, like Bob Barr, and all those wacko, un-patriotic terrorist sympathizers [on the "right" and the "left"] who make up the coalition Patriots to Restore Checks and Balances, and then every single Democrat in the House with the exception of Rep. Dan Boren (Okla.), wow -- all but one Democrat in the House is a "crazy on the left."
Typical Republican ad hominem attacks, from so-called "leaders" so far out of touch with the concerns of their consituents and citizens.
Sorry, but "if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear," just doesn't cut it in America.

Poor losers, eh?

At least this bodes well for the hope that the sunsetting provisions of the [anti-]PATRIOT Act will not be renewed, nor the expansions of power and "administrative supeonas" granted.