Your “Conservadem” Senators in action, folks–this is going to be a little tougher for Rachel Maddow, et al. to explain, isn’t it? Why is the Pueblo Chieftain the only paper that reports the local connection to these national headline stories?
President Barack Obama’s decision last week to declassify secret Justice Department memos authorizing the CIA to use waterboarding and other aggressive interrogation methods during the war in Iraq has ignited a debate on Capitol Hill over whether any U.S. officials should be prosecuted for endorsing what critics claim was torture…
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and chairwoman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, asked the White House this week to withhold judgment on prosecutions until that committee finishes its own investigation. Colorado’s two Democratic senators endorsed Feinstein’s view Tuesday.
“There are a number of investigations under way by the Department of Justice and the Senate Intelligence Committee that ought to be completed before we come to any firm conclusions about whether anyone should be criminally prosecuted for engaging in torture,” Sen. Mark Udall said in a statement.
“I think President Obama is right to make clear that past abuses will not longer be tolerated and that our intelligence and military authorities will not engage in torture,” he said. “Not only are these practices contrary to our values as Americans, military experts confirm that torture yields unreliable intelligence and therefore hinders, rather than helps, to keep our country safe.”
Udall serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee and served on the House Armed Services Committee for 10 years in the House. He was among the few lawmakers to vote against going to war in Iraq.
Sen. Michael Bennet also said he wanted to see the results of the current investigations.
“I am dismayed that our government authorized the interrogation methods detailed by the CIA memos,” Bennet said in a statement. “I am pleased President Obama put a swift end to these practices. The world needs to know the United States lives by its principles, the rule of law, and does not torture.”
And as every paper in America reports today, President Obama dramatically reversed his prior view that nobody should be prosecuted over allegations of torture during the Bush administration–in response to pressure from international human rights organizations, those involved in the present investigations, liberal bloggers at Daily Kos–and “Conservadems” Mark Udall and Michael Bennet.
We know, trip out, right? The fact is that there are very few people on either side of the aisle willing to defend what’s coming out of the Senate committee’s investigation, and taking a stand on this isn’t going to hurt Udall or Bennet with anybody except maybe the listenership of “Gunny Bob” Newman. And they were probably lost votes before today. No, the people who need to get the message of the above story are, in some putative sense anyway, friendlies…