Saturday, August 04, 2007
Webb Voted "YES"
Because of the late Friday evening vote, the Senate's Web site has not yet posted the results. However, Meteor Blades of Daily Kos reports that 16 Democratic senators voted for the measure.
Not surprisingly, Virginia's junior senator voted with the majority. The added powers run out in six months; and after the recent court decision banning counterintelligence surveillance, legislators needed to do SOMETHING!
No Republicans voted against the bill. The following Democrats voted for it: Evan Bayh (Indiana); Tom Carper (Delaware); Bob Casey (Pennsylvania); Kent Conrad (North Dakota); Dianne Feinstein (California); Daniel Inouye (Hawai‘i); Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota); Nancy Mary Landrieu (Louisiana); Blanche Lincoln (Arkansas); Claire McCaskill (Missouri); Barbara Mikulski (Maryland); Bill Nelson (Florida); Ben Nelson (Nebraska); Mark Pryor (Arkansas); Ken Salazar (Colorado); Jim Webb (Virginia).
Senators Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Christopher Dodd and Barack Obama all opposed the bill, as did 23 other Democrats and Bernie Sanders, the independent from Vermont. Joe Lieberman voted ...well, you know how he voted.
Heaven help us if another attack takes place that might've been preventable. The Baltimore Sun explains:
Fear not; it may not be pretty but there are some safeguards: Approval must come from Director Mike McConnell of the National Security Agency as well as Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. The FISA court must review any warrantless surveillance within 120 days. And finally, the law expires "in six months to give Congress time to craft a more comprehensive plan."
The Senate bill would give Bush the expanded eavesdropping authority for six months. The temporary powers would give Congress time to work out a more comprehensive plan instead of rushing to approve a permanent bill before their monthlong break.
The Senate vote was 60-28. Both parties had agreed to require 60 votes for passage.
The Bush administration began pressing for changes after a recent ruling by the FISA court that barred the government from eavesdropping on foreign suspects whose messages were being routed through U.S. communications carriers.
In the meantime, the House is working fast and furiously to vote on a similar bill and go home.
Poor Kossiacs, looks like House members won't be able to make it to their convention in Chicago.