Gonzales Frames the Issue

The White House has sent out the text of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee this morning. For the most part, he repeats the basic points on the legality of the NSA program which he has made elsewhere, and which we have already commented on at length. So I won’t repeat those points. I especially liked, however, the way Gonzales concluded his testimony:

I have highlighted the legal authority for the terrorist surveillance program. And I look forward to our discussion, and know that you appreciate there remain serious constraints of what I can say about operational details. Our enemy is listening. And I cannot help but wonder if they aren’t shaking their heads in amazement at the thought that anyone would imperil such a sensitive program by leaking its existence in the first place, and smiling at the prospect that we might now disclose even more or perhaps even unilaterally disarm ourselves of a key tool in the War on Terror.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Given the hysterical comments of Senators like Pat Leahy, as we noted earlier today, that frames the issue pretty clearly.


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