COMPROMISE?….The Washington Post got it right yesterday in their editorial about Arlen Specter’s supposed “compromise” bill about domestic surveillance:
The bill’s most dangerous language would effectively repeal FISA’s current requirement that all domestic national security surveillance take place under its terms….Any reasonable court looking at this bill would understand it as withdrawing the nearly three-decade-old legal insistence that FISA is the exclusive legitimate means of spying on Americans. It would therefore legitimize whatever it is the NSA is doing ? and a whole lot more.
….The bill even makes a hash out of the generally reasonable idea of transferring existing litigation to the FISA court system. It inexplicably permits the FISA courts to “dismiss a challenge to the legality of an electronic surveillance program for any reason” ? such as, say, the eye color of one of the attorneys.
This bill is not a compromise but a full-fledged capitulation on the part of the legislative branch to executive claims of power.