home

Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillance Illegal

A second report from the independent Congressional Research Agency finds that Bush's warrantless NSA electronic surveillance did not comply with federal law.

The Congressional Research Service opinion said that the amended 1947 law requires President Bush to keep all members of the House and Senate intelligence committees "fully and currently informed" of such intelligence activities as the domestic surveillance effort.

The memo from national security specialist Alfred Cumming is the second report this month from CRS to question the legality of aspects of Bush's domestic spying program. A Jan. 6 report concluded that the administration's justifications for the program conflicted with current law.

Cumming's analysis found that both intelligence committees should have been briefed because the program involved intelligence collection activities. The only exception in the law applies to covert actions, Cumming found, and those programs must be reported to the "Gang of Eight," which includes House and Senate leaders in addition to heads of the intelligence panels. The administration can also withhold some operational details in rare circumstances, but that does not apply to the existence of entire programs, he wrote.

Unless the White House contends the program is a covert action, the memo said, "limiting congressional notification of the NSA program to the Gang of Eight . . . would appear to be inconsistent with the law."

Background on the first report earlier this month is here.

< Groups Work Feverishly to Save Reporter Jill Carroll | Democrats Urge a 'No' Vote on Alito >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft


  • Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#1)
    by Johnny on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 05:34:32 AM EST
    Come on, let's fire him already.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#2)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 06:50:21 AM EST
    Dog bites man.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#3)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 08:37:46 AM EST
    It is painfully obvious it's illegal to all but the wingnuttiest among us.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#4)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 10:27:50 AM EST
    kdog - It was so obvious that all those lawyers who reviewed it say it is legal. Dog bites man.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#5)
    by roger on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 10:45:05 AM EST
    PPJ, Dog bites man? Of course it is, W acted illegally, all reputable attorneys agree

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#6)
    by Slado on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 10:59:54 AM EST
    OBL saying that he still plans to attack America is why the majority of Americans have little patience for whiney liberals screeming about civil liberties. If OBL didn't want to kill us then maybe this plan of attack by the democrats would play but him and his buddies do so it won't. We live in a dangerous world and for MOST Americans they would prefer that their government do everything it can to protect them then do everything it can to protect the civil liberties of terrorists. Once dems can get past their hatred of Bush and realize that the enemy is in Pakistan, not Washington they'll start winning elections.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#7)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 11:01:40 AM EST
    TY Roger. Any lawyer who thinks these actions are legal needs to go back to Constitutional Law 101.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#8)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 11:13:08 AM EST
    Still think this is nothing but partisanship Slado? It may well be to the crooked Dems in the Senate, but not to the citizenry genuinely concerned with the erosion of liberty. Remember, any Dem that makes it to the White House will inherit these new powers if they withstand the legal challenges. And you are incorrect on one point...the enemy of the 4th amendment certainly does reside in Washington.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#9)
    by soccerdad on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 11:51:11 AM EST
    We live in a dangerous world and for MOST Americans they would prefer that their government do everything it can to protect them then do everything it can to protect the civil liberties of terrorists.
    Failure to change the US policy in the mideast combined with an invasion of Iraq has done more to help terrorism than OBL could ever have done. By invading Iraq, we confirmed everything OBL had said about American intentions in the ME. A good policy intended to make us safer should, in fact, not make things worse. Terror attacks against the US will increase as we invade Iran, syria etc. AQ is in 60 countries. Its going to take a lot of time to invade, bomb and or destroy all 60 countries. Bush's approach is in direct contradicition to the anti-terrorist approach advocated by the military experts at the War College. So the world will steadily become more unstable as these testosterone filled, brainless, macho idiots continue with their imperialistic aggression against 1 billion Muslims, or at least that portion who happen to be sitting on the oil and gas the neocons crave.

    Haven't the terrorists won if Americans lose their civil liberties in this "war"? It seems to fall right into their hands for the country to move further and further into the dictatorship category. And once we start giving up and losing our rights, do you really think the government is going to give them back? If you do, would you mind buying this Brooklyn Bridge that I'm trying to unload? It is painfully obvious it's illegal to all but the wingnuttiest among us. The new thing is, "Yes, it may be illegal, but Clinton did it too!!" Which is wrong, but apparently to the Fox "News" crowd, that makes it okay.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#11)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 01:38:21 PM EST
    wingnuttiest among us
    Add the In-Justice Dept. to the wingnutty list.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#12)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 03:51:48 PM EST
    Even my arch conservative brother-in-law admits all evidence points to the admin. breaking the law. He just doesn't care. Fair enough, tell me you don't care that the pres. breaks the law, just don't b.s. that this crap is legal.

    Re: Second Report Says Bush Warrantless Surveillan (none / 0) (#13)
    by squeaky on Thu Jan 19, 2006 at 05:09:07 PM EST
    Checks and Balances are relegated to bookkeeping only, as we have seen with the Republican party $$ scandals. Quite the creative reinterpretation of how the founding fathers saw things.... very, very, creative. Soon we will have only one branch of gov (streamlining) so Americans can be safe and avoid complicated distractions. We are at war and sacrifices have to be made.