3/31/06 Judiciary Committee Hearings on Presidential Censure
Fri Mar 31, 2006 17:51


3/13/06 Senator Russell Feingold: Censure President George W. Bush. Floor speech.

WOW! I am suprised that a fist fight did not break out!!!
3/31/06 Judiciary Committee Hearings on Presidential Censure

#1 http://www.apfn.net/audio/M002I060331091231-censure-3-31-06A.MP3 (5.70MB)

#2 http://www.apfn.net/audio/M003I060331093750-censure-3-31-06B.MP3 (5.42MB)

#3 http://www.apfn.net/audio/M004I060331100142-censure-3-31-06C.MP3 (5.29MB)


Senator Russ Feingold
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3/13/06 Senator Russell Feingold: Censure President George W. Bush. Floor speech.
http://www.apfn.net/audio/M001I060313155501-FEINGOLD-CENSURE.MP3 (6.11MB) 26Min 42 Sec


Russell Feingold's resolution to censure President Bush for authorizing ... Reuters reports: "President George W. Bush expressed support on Monday for US ...



Washington Post US Senate panel set to consider bid to censure Bush

John Dean backs uphill case for censure of Bush

By Thomas Ferraro
Friday, March 31, 2006; 3:05 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former White House counsel John Dean said on Friday that U.S. President George W. Bush's domestic spying program raised more concerns about abuse of power than the Watergate scandal that toppled his boss Richard Nixon.

Dean, who served time in prison for his role in Watergate, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on behalf of a seemingly futile Democratic bid to censure Bush for the eavesdropping program that is part of his war on terrorism.

appear today because I believe, with good reason, that the situation is even more serious," Dean, whose testimony three decades ago help lead to Nixon's resignation in 1974, said in support of the seldom-used measure to discredit a president.

Dean is also the author of a book titled "Worse than Watergate," which slams the Bush administration as obsessed with politics and secrecy.

"This is not Watergate," countered another witness, Lee Casey, who served in earlier Republican administrations. Casey argued Bush had the power to authorize the eavesdropping program shortly after the September 11 attacks.

Republicans have dismissed the censure resolution as a political stunt, while many Democrats have distanced themselves from it as they jockey for position on the issue of national security and near the November congressional elections.

Sen. Russ Feingold, a maverick Wisconsin Democrat, offered the censure resolution this month. He charged that without getting court approval, Bush violated the law by secretly ordering the program to listen to phone conversations with suspected al Qaeda members outside the country.

Committee Chairman Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, began the hearing by declaring that the resolution has no merit.

"But it provides a forum" for discussion, said Specter.

Like many members of the U.S. Congress, Specter has voiced concerns about the program that monitors overseas phone calls and e-mails of U.S. citizens while in pursuit of al Qaeda.

The 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, made spying on American citizens in the United States illegal without the approval of a special secret court.


Yet the administration contends, with the support of much of the Republican-led Senate, that Bush has the constitutional authority to conduct the program.

Feingold again rejected that, and noted an effort by Specter to require the FISA court to review the program.

"Where we disagree, apparently, is whether the president's authority under Article II of the Constitution allows him to authorize warrantless surveillance without complying with FISA," Feingold told Specter.

"I do not believe he has such authority," Feingold said.

Feingold's resolution has rallied the support of liberal groups but has also galvanized conservatives backing the embattled war-time president.

So far, just two of Feingold's 43 fellow Senate Democrats, have signed on as co-sponsors of the censure move.

But Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont, ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, said on Friday he would also back condemning Bush for "secretly and systematically violating the law."

Dean, one of five witnesses called to testify, said, "I recall a morning ... March 21, 1973, that I tried to warn a president of the consequences of staying his course."

"I failed to convince President Nixon that morning and the rest, as they say, is history," Dean said.

Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, rejected comparisons of Bush to Watergate, and said: "Today's hearing is our committee's first -- and hopefully last -- discussion of Senator Feingold's resolution."

The panel must decide, however, whether to send it to the full Senate where it seems certain to be defeated.

(Additional reporting by Richard Cowan)

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