March 25, 2006

Dubya to Congress: Drop dead.

After all the wrangling over the renewal of the Patriot Act, and all the assurances that the GOP-crafted 'compromise' would ensure that Congress keeps tabs on how the FBI and Justice Department use the act's surveillance provisions, Dubya says that he'll just ignore those oversight requirements.

[After] the reporters and guests had left [the Mar 9 signing ceremony], the White House quietly issued a "signing statement," an official document in which a president lays out his interpretation of a new law.

In the statement, Bush said that he did not consider himself bound to tell Congress how the Patriot Act powers were being used and that, despite the law's requirements, he could withhold the information if he decided that disclosure would "impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative process of the executive, or the performance of the executive's constitutional duties."

Bush wrote: "The executive branch shall construe the provisions ... that call for furnishing information to entities outside the executive branch ... in a manner consistent with the president's constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch and to withhold information ... "

Basically, the prez is once again telling Congress that it's irrelevant, that he'll do exactly what he wants no matter what laws are passed. And once again, sadly, the GOP-controlled Congress will roll over and play dead.

This magpie suspects we're all going to need to familiarize ourselves with the words 'authoritarian government.'

You can read the full text of Dubya's signing statement and of the parts of the Patriot Act that he claims he has the right to ignore if you go here.

Via Boston Globe and Free Government Information.

Posted by Magpie at March 25, 2006 01:57 PM | US News | Technorati links |