DOJ Stonewalls on NSA Surveillance Program

The Department of Justice today sent its responses to questions about Bush's warrantless electronic surveillance program to members of Congress. The ACLU, in press release (no link yet, received by email) responds:

The Department of Justice continues to refuse to give honest answers to basic questions, such as how many Americans have had their phone calls and e-mails listened to or read by the NSA without a warrant. Congress and the American people are entitled to the truth. Knowing how many innocent Americans have had their privacy invaded by this lawless program is not an 'operational' secret--it's the very question a less partisan and more independent Congress asked and got answered in the 1970s. That's when Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to try to prevent warrantless spying on Americans from happening again.

"The administration continues to try to get away with stonewalling Congress and the American people. Congress should not reward presidential obstruction with legislation to whitewash this violation of the Fourth Amendment and federal law. The current era of 'trust us, we're the government' must end now. Congress is obligated to investigate this illegal program further and cannot allow the Justice Department and White House to continue to suppress the facts. The law has been broken, and the people have a right to know how that happened."

More over at Raw Story including this answer, which confirms that doctors and lawyers are at risk of having their conversations wiretapped.

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    Re: DOJ Stonewalls on NSA Surveillance Program (none / 0) (#1)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 04:37:26 PM EST
    More importantly, they appear to have inadvertently confirmed that the program is one of "listen first, determine later."

    Re: DOJ Stonewalls on NSA Surveillance Program (none / 0) (#3)
    by Edger on Sat Mar 25, 2006 at 04:59:28 AM EST
    20 Democratic questions and not a single one was answered. Of course. They think that if they answer even one question directly and honestly the thin legal ice they skate on will crack. It actually shattered long ago, and the persistence of self deception among GOP reps and senators is the only thing keeping DOJ and bushco from sinking. It doens't even matter anymore if lay bushco supporters remain in that self delusion. There are so few of them left now that they don't count - they're just background noise now.

    Re: DOJ Stonewalls on NSA Surveillance Program (none / 0) (#4)
    by Edger on Sun Mar 26, 2006 at 09:15:52 AM EST

    Fri Mar 24, 6:59 PM ET WASHINGTON (Reuters)
    The Republican-led U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee announced on Friday it would hold a hearing next week on a call by a Democratic lawmaker to censure President George W. Bush for his domestic spy program. "Some Democrats in Congress have decided the president is the enemy and the terrorist surveillance program is grounds for censuring the president," Vice President Dick Cheney told a Republican fund-raiser in Orlando, Florida, on Friday, adding, "The American people have already made their decision. They agree with the president."
    I have to agree with the first part of Cheney's quote. But from the second part it seems reality is getting a bit difficult to accept these days for old Dick. I guess we can expect that any day now Dick and Karl and the boys will be trying to portray themselves as well-meaning but misunderstood downtrodden underdogs. Or maybe just 'mis-underestimated'.