Thursday, December 14, 2006

Leahy Outlines Agenda for Judiciary Committee

Senator Leahy (D-VT) gave an address yesterday regarding his priorities as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which he calls Restoration, Repair and Renewal: restoring constitutional values and the rights of ordinary Americans, repairing a broken oversight process and the return of accountability, and renewing the public’s right to know. He started off his address with a strong condemnation of Congress.
In my 32 years since then in the Senate, I have never seen a Congress so willfully derelict in its duties as during this Administration. This has been an unfortunate chapter in Congress’s history, a time when our Constitution was under assault, when our legal and human rights were weakened, when our privacy and other freedoms were eroded. This election was an intervention. The American people rose up to take away Congress’s rubber stamp, and to demand a new direction with more accountability.

The Judiciary Committee will do its part, he said. Click here for the full address.

11 comments:

Robert Parry said...

Leahy's always been a serious lawmaker. And, if nothing else, the Military Commissions Act of 2006 deserves a serious reexamination. It gives extraordinary power to the President and Defense Secretary. Explicitly, the law lets them lock non-U.S. citizens up without any habeas corpus -- or fair trial -- rights. But, implicitly, the law seems to cover U.S. citizens, too, with vague language applying to "any person" who aids and abets so-called "unlawful enemy combatants." When a law is handing over such far-reaching powers to government officials, it should be as carefully crafted as possible, not left for broad interpretation.

cassandra said...

And someone says the STASI and the KGB and the GESTAPO didn't leave heirs!

Ana, from Stockholm, Sweden

Sandy said...

Oh dear, it may be too soon for me to make any comments on the Judiciary Committee. I can only hope they have read through the Constitution as I had doubts about those Committee members last year.

frank67 said...

Refreshing to have Leahy in charge of Judiciary who does not refer to Our Constitution as "a G**D***ed piece of paper." Why unlike the wingnuts, Senator Leahy has read and UNDERSTANDS the Constitution!

Bob Locke said...

Leahy is one of the ones I do suspect will go forward strongly in the huge matter of righting our course, gone so long and adamantly astray. His first statements about issuing subpoenas were nicely measured, strong and firm without being shrill. The stupundits will be assailing all efforts at investigations launched by the Democrats, and what is needed is this kind of measured persistence and an adamant stand. So much has been covered up for so long that it's going to take constant digging.
Bob Locke

fanbelt said...

While Leahy is more than willing to speak out against injustice and coruption I think his voice will be heard like a tenor in a heavy metal band. The right's media machine will drown him out with diversions such as The Iraq Study Group. While this group may very well have studied, it appears to me that what they were looking for was a way to continue the Bush Assult on the constitution by postponing any solution to the Iraq war for at least two more years. We are now trying to explain how to develope a constitution in other countries by telling them how "it used to be here in the U.S.".

zasu said...

I know there is a lot of talk about the Democrats opening all kinds of investigations among the pundits and their ilk. They are trying to make it appear that any investigations will essentially be pay-back and a waste of time. But talk as they may, I sincerely believe the public is clamoring for sensible and focused investigations. One of the main reasons for the Dems winning back both houses is that the public is fed up with the lack of oversight and carte blanche this congress has given President Bush. There is a great deal of unhappiness with the lying and manipulation of facts that have led us into war, and have infringed on our constitutional rights. The public is ready to make this administration come clean.

moongazer said...

Senator Leahy is a seasoned legislator and will sagely lead the Judiciary Committee to correcting the legislation enacted by the miscreants in the power position for the past three years.

brilyNJ said...

I have been a long time consumer of news and information provided by Robert Parry in Consortiumnews.com and am happy to join this blog. Congratulations and good luck. I hope it brings many more people to the truth.

Brian

KWM said...

Leahy has got his work cut out for him. The administration's effort to shred not only the Constitution, but the bloody Magna Carta was aided and abetted by those with whom Leahy must still work, including a dozen Dems.

There's much to do to overcome the political cowardice demonstrated in the run-up to the last two midterm elections. I, for one, am not all that optimistic. I hope I'm wrong.

wolkenwolf said...

Americans know what we fight for, we proved in the last elections. The golden rule, The Bill of Rights and the Constitution of the United States. I believe America will right it's course in the world by exercising our Constitution and the laws of our land.