FISA capitulation: Which Iowa Democrat voted with the Republicans?

The House of Representatives approved the so-called “compromise” on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that in fact gave the Republicans and the White House everything they wanted.

One of Iowa’s three Democratic representatives voted with the Republicans. Can you guess which one without peeking here at the roll call vote?

That’s right, Leonard Boswell voted with the Republicans.

Bruce Braley and Dave Loebsack stuck with the majority of the House Democratic caucus and voted against this bill.

Meanwhile, Barack Obama came out against the immunity provision in the FISA bill today. His full statement on the bill is here, but the most important part seems to be this comment about the telecom immunity provision:

I will work in the Senate to remove this provision so that we can seek full accountability for past offenses.

Some people who follow this issue closely feel Obama’s statement didn’t go far enough. In particular, it is not clear whether “work in the Senate to remove this provision” would include supporting a filibuster of the bill.

In the good news column, Rob Hubler, Democratic candidate in the fifth district, sent the blogger Glenn Greenwald a strong statement opposing retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies. Here is a copy of that statement, which the Hubler campaign sent to me:

Dear Mr. Greenwald,

As  the Democratic nominee for Congress in Iowa’s Fifth Congressional District, I want you to know that I appreciate very much the initiative you  have taken to oppose and expose the FISA Amendments Act of  2008. This bill effectively guarantees retroactive immunity  for telecom companies that participated in the President’s illegal wiretap  program, and fails to protect the privacy of law-abiding Americans at home.

If elected, I would vigorously oppose this measure, which would essentially  require the court to grant immunity, and authorize surveillance on citizens without adequate checks and balances to protect their  rights.

I  believe that the constitutional rights of everyday Americans are at issue  here, and full accountability is needed.  No President  should ever have unchecked power.

As  a member of Congress, I will support legislation that preserves appropriate  court review of all surveillance of U. S. citizens, and I will not vote for immunity for telecom companies.

Americans  in the U. S. with no connection to suspected terrorists should never have  their privacy abridged by an overzealous, unchecked executive  branch.

Sincerely,

Rob  L. Hubler

  • This vote matters

    I am taking names and writing them down.  The 4th Amendment took a hit today.  Accountability for flagrant lawbreaking took a hit.  The rule of law was exchanged for the Rule of Bush and some campaign contributions.  I am not amused.

    Good on our Iowa congressmen who are proud possessors of one spine each.  

    Bless Rob Hubler, for the courage to step up to the right thing while running in the reddest district in Iowa.  

    A shout-out to Tom Harkin, who will vote against this bill next week.  (No inside info here, just his track record of upholding his oath of office.)

    For Leonard Boswell, I have that much-used quotation from Benjamin Franklin: They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.  Shame on you, Congressman.  Whatever happened to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution”?

  • Fallon's Out - Return to Form

    Aick!  This is exactly what we predicted would happen after Fallon’s campaign pushed Boz leftward before the primaries.  Worse yet, if you think about it, even if Fallon could have pulled it off and unseated Boz, Boz would have still voted for this perversion because he would have nothing to lose.

    At least my current Rep Latham is a declared Republican coward!

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