Senate is debating retroactive telecom immunity on CSPAN2, and the Republicans are proving that it’s impossible to defend their opposition without lying your ass off.

Glenn Greenwald:

The Senate today — led by Jay Rockefeller, enabled by Harry Reid, and with the active support of at least 12 (and probably more) Democrats, in conjunction with an as-always lockstep GOP caucus — will vote to legalize warrantless spying on the telephone calls and emails of Americans, and will also provide full retroactive amnesty to lawbreaking telecoms, thus forever putting an end to any efforts to investigate and obtain a judicial ruling regarding the Bush administration’s years-long illegal spying programs aimed at Americans. The long, hard efforts by AT&T, Verizon and their all-star, bipartisan cast of lobbyists to grease the wheels of the Senate — led by former Bush 41 Attorney General William Barr and former Clinton Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick — are about to pay huge dividends, as such noble efforts invariably do with our political establishment.

Pat Leahy’s ridiculous assertion yesterday that he would join Dodd in the "filibuster" was one of the more craven and dishonest moves in this debate. The rules they have all agreed to have precluded a true filibuster, so what he means is he’ll stand up and support Dodd in the limited time allotted. The time for Leahy to take a stand was when Reid substituted the Intelligence bill for the Judiciary, and Leahy said nothing.

The Democrats have conspired to give Bush everything he wants. We’re going to get screwed. Nobody should pretend to be a hero here.

Update: Woo hoo! You lose. Dodd’s amendment to strip retroactive immunity fails spectacularly, 31-67. I have to say that what constantly amazes me is just how damn little it costs corporate America to buy our elected officials. Pennies on the dollar, really, for what they get.

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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