I am glad to know that this Tuesday The Senate Judiciary Committee will be holding hearings on President Bush’s illegal domestic spying operations, and that the committee will be holding hearings on Sen. Russ Feingold’s censure resolution on Friday.
As you prepare for the hearings I would like you to reflect on the possibility that this country has past through the period historians might one day call “The Period of the American Republic.”
With the DoJ's responses to the House Judiciary Committee's FISA questions, it is clear to many of us that we are now living under some new form of government. The Republic of Adams, Jefferson and Hamilton appears to be lost. While we may preserve the songs, displays, and the meaningless pantomimes of self-government - it is clear that we have dispensed with the idea of representative democracy.
As Glenn Greenwald recently put it, “The DoJ’S response made clear to Congress that even if Congress passes some sort of newly amended FISA of the type which Sen. DeWine introduced, and even if the President "agrees" to it and signs it into law, the President still has the power to violate that law if he wants to. Put another way, the Administration is telling the Congress -- again -- that they can go and pass all the laws they want which purport to liberalize or restrict the President's powers, and it does not matter, because the President has and intends to preserve the power to do whatever he wants regardless of what those laws provide.”
I hope that you find that the Administration has seized the power of Congress to make the laws, and that they have seized the power of the judiciary to interpret the laws.
It is my fervent prayer that you will find that the Bush Administration has consolidated within themselves all of the powers of the government, and that this situation is exactly the opposite of everything our Government is intended to be.
If you do find this to be the case, I have faith that you will have the courage to take the appropriate steps to remedy the situation.
cc: Senators Specter, Hatch, Leahy, Grassley, Kennedy, Kyl, DeWine, Kohl, Sessions, Feinstein, Graham, Feingold, Cornyn, Schumer, Brownback, Durbin, Coburn I faxed this to Biden and the rest of the committee this morning. I included my home address, so I'll publish any responses I get. Biden's fax number is in the comments section if anyone wants to drop him a line.