Democrat Cave-In of the Day
“After The Times disclosed the program in late 2005, Mr. Bush looked for a way to legalize it retroactively. He found it this summer. FISA also requires a warrant to intercept strictly foreign communications that happen to move through data networks in the United States.
That Internet age flaw has a relatively simple fix. But the White House seized the opportunity to ram through the far broader bill, which could authorize warrantless surveillance of Americans’ homes, offices and phone records; permit surveillance of Americans abroad without probable cause; and sharply limit the power of the court that controls electronic spying.
Democrats justified their votes for this bad bill by noting that the law expires in February and by promising to fix it this fall. The House bill did, in fact, restore most judicial safeguards. But the deal cooked up by Mr. Rockefeller and the White House doesn’t. It would not expire for six years, which is too long. And it would dismiss pending lawsuits against companies that turned data over to the government without a warrant”, says the Times in a particularly pointed editorial of last Saturday.
PS: This bill also lets telecommunication companies off the hook for the roles they played in past wiretapping. Guess who they have been stepping up campaign contributions to . . . yep, ROCKY!
Here's John Dean's take on the issue via Olbermann: