Thursday, March 22, 2007

Senate joins House in calling Bush bluff

I had to correct last night's post, because an alert reader noticed it was a House committee that approved the subpoenas yesterday, but it turns I was just being a little clairvoyant. The Senate did indeed agree today to also authorize subpoenas." The White House reacted predictably.
Presidential press secretary Tony Snow cast the administration's offer to allow Rove, former White House counsel Harriet Miers and their deputies talk to lawmakers in private as the best deal Democrats are going to get.

"We opened with a compromise," Snow told reporters. "By our reaching out, we're doing something that we're not compelled to do by the Constitution." But, he added, "The phone lines are still open."
Compromise, my foot. It's a dodge, but I rather liked Leahy's response.
"I have never heard the Senate take an ultimatum like that," Leahy said. "I know he's the decider for the White House. "But he's not the decider for the United States Senate."
Nor is he the decider for the American people. Contrary to the loyalist's contention, this is not a private personnel matter. This is our government. We pay the bills, we pay the salaries and we have the right to know how these decisions are made. And the president is most certainly constitutionally required to disclose that information to all of us.

There is no reason not to give this testimony under sworn oath before a public committee and there is a multitude of reasons they should do so. If we're to trust that the president's advisors aren't going to lie in unsworn testimony, then what's the big problem with them swearing in anyway? It only takes a few seconds and if they intend to tell the truth, then why are so reluctant to put it on the public record?

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