As his opponents for the Democratic presidential nomination stayed in Iowa, scrambling for victory in the January primaries, Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut came back to Washington and eked out a win on the Senate floor.
With Dodd threatening a filibuster, Senate Democratic leaders pulled a proposed reform of the Foreign Surveillance Intelligence Act Monday night, agreeing to reassess a provision that would have granted retroactive legal immunity to the telecommunications companies that participated in the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program.
The withdrawal of the bill came after Dodd had been on the Senate floor — making speeches, threatening amendments, answering questions — for roughly eight hours…
“Today we have scored a victory for American civil liberties and sent a message to President Bush that we will not tolerate his abuse of power and veil of secrecy,” Dodd said in a written statement Monday night, after the compromise was announced. “The President should not be above the rule of law, nor should the telecom companies who supported his quest to spy on American citizens.”
As John noted in yesterday’s Tech5 podcast, the Senate rolled over in the prelims – 76 to 10 – ready to cover Telcom buns for collaborating with Bush.
Harry Reid caved in to Dodd – verbalizing his fear that confronting Bush “doesn’t mean we’re any less patriotic than anyone else.”
It doesn’t mean that he’s any less pathetic than anyone else, either.