Dodd Places Hold On FISA Telco Amnesty

Let the DoddMania begin:

The Military Commissions Act. Warrantless wiretapping. Shredding of Habeas Corpus. Torture. Extraordinary Rendition. Secret Prisons.

No more.
I have decided to place a "hold" on the latest FISA bill that would have included amnesty for telecommunications companies that enabled the President's assault on the Constitution by illegally providing personal information on their customers without judicial authorization.

I said that I would do everything I could to stop this bill from passing, and I have.
It's about delivering results -- and as I've said before, the FIRST thing I will do after being sworn into office is restore the Constitution. But we shouldn't have to wait until then to prevent the further erosion of our country's most treasured document. That's why I am stopping this bill today.

Thank you Senator Dodd. You make me proud to be a supporter of your candidacy for President.

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    Just called AND emailed him... (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Michael Gass on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:21:36 PM EST
    About time SOMEONE stood up and did something more than blow hot air!

    btw... here is the contact info (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Michael Gass on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:23:31 PM EST
    Campaign HQ Phone Number: 202.737.3633
    Name: Amos Hochstein, Policy Director

    and email here

    Bravo, Dodd. (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by desertswine on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:25:06 PM EST

    Holding the line on the rule of law (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by NMvoiceofreason on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:10:44 PM EST
    BRAVO, Sen. Dodd!

    Quick, get a sample of his blood! It may hold the cure for DLDS (Democratic Lack of Spine Defect).

    He could help cure millions!


    He Has My Vote (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by squeaky on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:26:00 PM EST

    Secure from Battle Stations, stand down (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by Sumner on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:35:16 PM EST
    Good God that was a close one.

    Big Tent, you have touted Dodd all along. You just earned my respect and admiration at your judgment of this individual.

    it isn't over yet... (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by Michael Gass on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:47:36 PM EST
    It just means a delay and 60 votes needed to push it along in the Senate.

    Don't stand down yet... repeat... we are STILL at General Quarters!!!


    Please explain (4.50 / 2) (#11)
    by scribe on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 03:47:16 PM EST
    why there need to be 60 votes to move the bill forward. By placing a hold, he's withholding unanimous consent, and without that nothing moves, right?

    It is an informal filibuster (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 04:04:06 PM EST
    Just like a filibuster, a hold can be defeated by 60 votes.

    So he's "defunded" (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Edger on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 04:49:43 PM EST
    a capitulation? And the repugs now own it?

    heh (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:07:45 PM EST
    Yes indeed. This is a model.

    the Power of Doing Nothing.


    Forget the 60 votes. (none / 0) (#19)
    by Edger on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:16:17 PM EST
    All we need now is The 100th Monkey.

    Ahem.... Nancy? (none / 0) (#20)
    by Edger on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:17:16 PM EST
    Yes, well (none / 0) (#24)
    by Edger on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:32:36 PM EST
    The monkeys who didn't learn are extinct now. ;-)

    Tap, tap, tap. Nancy?


    But the Army (none / 0) (#31)
    by NMvoiceofreason on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:14:19 PM EST
    of the 12 monkeys will rule the world.

    (Bruce Willis film reference)


    did you (none / 0) (#27)
    by taylormattd on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 06:10:38 PM EST
    see this? It looks like Reid is moving full steam ahead despite the hold, and will bring it up for a vote in mid-November.

    Question: can Leahy derail this by simply declining to schedule Judiciary Committee hearings? My understanding is that it is being referred to the Judiciary Committee next.


    The only precedent I can think of (none / 0) (#28)
    by andgarden on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 06:16:40 PM EST
    for party leadership ignoring the objections of members of the same party is in the case of civil rights legislation. (By which I mean an official objection like a hold) I've disagreed with Reid in the past, but this is the only example I can think of where he has decided to ignore the standard operations of the Senate for political expediency. I expect better from him.

    We derail Reid (none / 0) (#30)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:03:15 PM EST
    IF it is true.

    Kos, too... (none / 0) (#10)
    by A DC Wonk on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 03:20:53 PM EST
    ... has thought Dodd has been the candidate that is best on the issues (although he admits that being a second-tier candidate allows one more freedom to stand for what one believes)

    So, "me, too" -- well done Sen Dodd!


    The next time some asks me (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by troqua on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 02:57:51 PM EST
    why I'm supporting a non-starter, I can show them why.  

    Just checked out Dodd's stance on issues... (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Michael Gass on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 03:00:10 PM EST
    I gotta say... I like his positions except for Iraq (everyone had to be out.. no residual forces at all or they will die).

    Excellent (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by andgarden on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 03:00:26 PM EST
    Thank you Senator Dodd.

    well ... (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by chemoelectric on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 03:51:11 PM EST
    ... Dodd just earned a small campaign donation from me.

    Indeed (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by manys on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 04:04:45 PM EST
    I have changed my attitude this year, no more contributions for promises, I will only give money in response to action.

    If you are a candidate, the best way to get me to vote (and contribute) to you is to act like the President you would be if elected, BEFORE getting elected. Hillary and Obama are ineffectual in their government roles right now and so do not deserve to be President, unless the President is supposed to ignore reality so they can pursue their pipe dreams. Edwards gets a bit of a pass since he's not in office but he makes it up in rhetoric and calls to action, which admittedly might not be enough.


    Well Done (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by TomK on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 04:41:32 PM EST
    "Thank you Senator Dodd. You make me proud to be a supporter of your candidacy for President."

    And you make me support your candidicy.  I'm going to dig out my credit card right now.  And I'm no longer undecided.

    Count me in as a Dodd supporter (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by DA in LA on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:18:00 PM EST
    It's called leadership.  Someone just stepped up to the plate and knocked one out of the park.

    This was great news (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Maryb2004 on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:24:33 PM EST
    It's nice when someone gets it right. Good job Senator Dodd.  

    And good job A/BTD for making the call.

    It would be nice if Dodd held out for particularized warrants as well as the removal of retroactive immunity.   Can you ask for that next?

    Time to lean on Reid (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by scribe on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:35:02 PM EST
    Who? (none / 0) (#26)
    by Edger on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 05:39:01 PM EST
    Oh Harry! Right.... he used to be a Senator, yes?

    If he does that (none / 0) (#29)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:02:45 PM EST
    then all hell breaks loose.

    I will denounce every day until the 2008 election. I will urge his removal as Leader.

    I will heap great abuse upon him and urge all others to do so.


    Reid gets his response (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by scribe on Fri Oct 19, 2007 at 11:24:27 AM EST
    Dodd putting everything on the line here too. (none / 0) (#38)
    by Edger on Fri Oct 19, 2007 at 11:58:43 AM EST
    ...the legislation could hit the floor in mid-November, although senior Senate aides said late November or early December is a more likely time frame.

    Whenever that big day comes, Dodd -- as the keeper of the "hold" -- must return from the campaign trail to officially block debate on the bill. That entails standing around on the Senate floor, forcing procedural votes, avoiding the furious glares of colleagues who don't share the same concerns. The standard duration of such showdowns is about a week -- time that Dodd, who is trailing badly in early primary polls, can scarcely afford.

    But, from browsing around the net, from all the comments I'm reading almost everywhere people can comment, it looks like he just bought himself an overwhelming chunk of progressive support. Except orange support.

    Maybe enough support to make up for losing a week of campaigning? That week will probably have the entire MSM attention aimed at him.... that can't hurt.


    Regular abuse from you (none / 0) (#33)
    by andgarden on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:49:37 PM EST
    would be scary enough!

    and... if he does it again... (none / 0) (#34)
    by Michael Gass on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:55:16 PM EST
    you say:

    And if you don't leave... I shall taunt you again

    I Want A Second Opinion (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by john horse on Fri Oct 19, 2007 at 06:00:37 AM EST
    Good for Senator Dodd.  

    The Bush administration says this was necessary but they can't prove it because of national security.  I don't trust Bush.  I want a second opinion.  Lets put a hold on this bill until the next administration.  If the Bush administration is right then the next administration can choose not to prosecute.  If they are a bunch of lying SOBs then they don't deserve immunity.  

    then I must add: (none / 0) (#32)
    by Sumner on Thu Oct 18, 2007 at 10:39:32 PM EST
    We understand why they need this immunity for corporations that carry out the spying as proxies for government. Government already controls mainstream media. Powerful interests have managed to consolidate mainstram media into fewer and fewer very powerful corporate hands which because of many overlappimg interests, such as defense contracts and the like, oblige the MSM to shill for the government, with the controlled media often telling outrageous lies, and acting as little more than propaganda mouthpieces for government.

    Along comes the blogosphere, part of the Internet, which leaps into the vacuum and fills the void left by the captured 4th Estate. "Something has to be done!", they figure, and thay calculate cunningly. That something is a strategy to privatize the Internet, allowing the corporations to fully control the content of the message once again, by controlling the messengers that use their service. With "packet sniffing" and "packet shaping", carriers can determine the content on the network traffic passing through their little corner and make copies and slow down given traffic and even effectively block content not fully "consonant with the program".

    Judging from the strategy employed today, it is safe to assume that next round, lawmakers will use many times the amount of distraction that they employed today - which included the confirmation hearing for Michael B. Mukasey as Attorney General, where the defense of torture was deliberately raised to distract, or the human rights hearing with Canadian Born torture victim Maher Arar, where Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R - CA), lauded torture at length for real distraction. And there was the SCHIP veto override show to act as a red herring.

    On Google News, no mention of the historical act by Sen. Chris Dodd, but hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of stories abounded about birth control for middle schoolers. (Fully a worthy story, to be sure, but not at the cost of distracting from the jeopardy of the freedom we currently know, nor of the cost from the loss of an open Internet, as we now know it). Yet juxtaposed with that warm and fuzzy story on middle schoolers, appear yesterday's hearings on Internet Sex Crimes, advertised as shown again today on C-SPAN, another sure-fire hot button distraction issue.

    So it is clear, at the time of the next vote, they are planning horrific events with monstrous consequences that simply cannot be ignored, in order to ram through their sine qua non which they are bound and determined to try and do. This time they were simply caught off guard that they hadn't cooked up enough distraction to lend cover for what they were about to do.

    But just as Americans are demanding the 3 million missing White House emails, the Senate Intelligence Committee needs be put on notice that any and all records pertaining to their dealings on Telcom Immunity must be preserved as there is ample evidence of collusion in crime and that such records will surely be demanded in court in the future.

    And it goes beyond payments by telcoms for immunity legislation. There are numerous suggestions that the spying is being done for reasons of politics, not simply for the pretextual explanations so hastily offered as National Security.

    Uh, point of order (none / 0) (#36)
    by NMvoiceofreason on Fri Oct 19, 2007 at 10:04:45 AM EST
     44 USC 2203 (Presidential records preservation) is a nobly intended law. Unfortunately, it has no teeth. No one will ever spend a DAY in jail for shredding the entire record of the Bush/Cheney maladministration. Which will happen the week of January 20th, 2009.