The “conservative” Democrats in the House and the Senate were just terrified enough of being called Weak On Terrorism to capitulate to Bush’s strong-arming over the weekend. And guess what?
Congressional aides and others familiar with the details of the law said that its impact went far beyond the small fixes that administration officials had said were needed to gather information about foreign terrorists. They said seemingly subtle changes in legislative language would sharply alter the legal limits on the government’s ability to monitor millions of phone calls and e-mail messages going in and out of the United States.
They also said that the new law for the first time provided a legal framework for much of the surveillance without warrants that was being conducted in secret by the National Security Agency and outside the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the 1978 law that is supposed to regulate the way the government can listen to the private communications of American citizens.
“This more or less legalizes the N.S.A. program,” said Kate Martin, director of the Center for National Security Studies in Washington, who has studied the new legislation.
I don’t believe that Democrats and Republicans are the same. The majority of Democrats voted against this bill, whereas almost every Republican voted for it. But, I do believe that some Democrats are just as bad as Republicans, and should be pushed out of office by true progressives.