Monday, January 23, 2006

McCain weighs in on domestic spying

McCain:

Bush Acted Outside Of His Authority In Spying On Americans

Sun Jan 22, 2006 at 12:19:05 PM PDT

Via Think Progress & FOX News Sunday, we learn that Senator John McCain has joined the growing list of Republicans who believe the President's spying program may be illegal and needs to be investigated. McCain stated that he does not believe Bush had the authority to implement such a program.

Right-wingers though simply won't acknowledge that the call for an investigation is bi-partisan. Take today's Washington Times, for example, a reliable barometer of winger sentiment and spin:

While opinion polls show public support for the program, liberals have tried to use it against Mr. Bush by suggesting he is overstepping his authority as the nation's chief executive. The program was called "illegal" yesterday by the American Civil Liberties Union in a briefing to Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee. [...]
To counter this argument, the administration is mounting an aggressive campaign to retain and solidify public support for the eavesdropping program. It began yesterday, when White House strategist Karl Rove accused Democrats of making "wild and reckless and false charges" against Mr. Bush.

"Solidify public support"? A Pew Research poll conducted Jan. 4-8 "found that 48 percent of respondents thought that "monitoring Americans suspected of terrorist ties without court permission" was "generally right," and 47 percent thought it was "generally wrong."" Given how poorly worded the questions are in such polls, that certainly doesn't show "public support" for the program. Too many poll questions on this subject are along the lines of: "would you allow the government to monitor some of your calls if it would prevent evil terrorists from coming into your home and slaughtering your family? YES or NO?" Considering the false dichotomy set up by many of these polls, the fact that the program is only garnering a 45%-50% approval rate is shocking.

More on the flip...

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