Wednesday, May 24, 2006

It Is To Laugh

After more than five years of letting the Emperor run the Congress as well as the White House, members of Congress are suddenly concerned about a breach in the separation of powers. The reason? The Justice Department authorized a full search of a sitting congressman's office on Capitol Hill. From an AP report printed in the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

The FBI's weekend search of the House office of a Louisiana Democrat under investigation for bribery may have overstepped constitutional boundaries, House leaders said as the congressman under investigation pledged to stay in office.

...House Speaker Dennis Hastert said the Justice Department had never before crossed a line that separates Congress from the executive branch by searching a congressional office while investigating a member of Congress.

..."Nothing I have learned in the last 48 hours leads me to believe that there was any necessity to change the precedent established over those 219 years," Hastert, an Illinois Republican, said in a statement Monday.

The FBI's intrusion into the sacred halls of Congress apparently ruffled a few feathers. I find it odd that after all the intrusion into American civil liberties done under the aegis of the Patriot Act, Congress finds this raid surprising. Many Americans have been complaining about just the same thing and have received no response from Congress beyond the usual: "Nine-Eleven! Nine-Eleven!"

The more cynical among us suspect there is more to the incident:

...House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said the raid raises questions about why the Justice Department raided the offices of a Democrat but not Republican lawmakers under investigation. "It certainly has been disparate treatment," he said.

Even if true, the Democrats in Congress have, with few exceptions, certainly not done much to stop the steamrollering of unconstitutional power grabs by the Emperor. Why weren't their complaints made earlier, and more loudly?

After all the American people have had to put up with, it is rather difficult for us to be terribly sympathetic to this Congress. One is tempted to repeat what we have been told in defense of the NSA spying on domestic calls and the recent revelation of the whole sale release of telephone records: "What have you got to hide? Innocent people have nothing to fear."

Instead, however, perhaps we can use this incident as a "teaching moment." Maybe Congress is finally ready to get it.


This might explain some of Speaker Hastert's angst as expressed above:

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dennis Hastert, is under investigation by the FBI, which is seeking to determine his role in an ongoing public corruption probe into members of Congress, ABC News has learned from high level government sources.

Federal officials say the information implicating Hastert was developed from convicted lobbyists who are now cooperating with the government.

Please excuse my giggles.

(Thanks to Atrios for the information.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

" Maybe Congress is finally ready to get it."

do you really think they could correlate the two?
they think they are royalty and above us all.we just low life scum,because we work for our living.
i wanna see what happens now when dems get back in power and the precedence is set and a repug gets his office raided.

6:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gitmo Gonzales is following the Scareborough precedent. Ergo, not.

What if Congress rallies around the lawbreaker, and creates a means of making evidence inadmissable? Then the entire Dukestir crew leaves their stuff lying around for a pre-tipped 'raid' to find and Gitmo does the deed.

How much of this Jefferson entrapment seems like a possible entrapment scam that folded off something as simple as an opened spam email?

If they can act like a national from Nigeria, where's the Ports World fake reps offering marked bills? Where's the new ABSCAM Hamas-ers or AIPAC launderers?

Justice has narrow eyes these days , that much is obvious.
There's all kinds of possibilities of this trial unfolding from illegal NSA taps or being cultured as a solution to other illegal activity.

10:07 AM  

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