Friday, October 26, 2007

Steny talks sense

By Libby

In case you missed it, Steny Hoyer made some really heartening remarks this week. You can get the full text at the link but here's some choice quotes.

We also swear an oath to defend the Constitution of the United States, and to honor the values and principles that are contained therein for example, the Fourth Amendment right that Americans be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures, and the Fifth Amendment right to due process of law.

As our fourth President James Madison, wrote in Federalist Paper Number 47 more than 200 years ago: ’The accumulation of all powers legislative, executive, and judiciary in the same hands, whether of one, a few or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.’

[On teleco immunity] Simply stated, it would be grossly irresponsible for Congress to grant blanket immunity for companies without even knowing whether their conduct was legal or not. And, importantly, this view is shared by the Chairman and Ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Let me add that I also believe we made a tremendous mistake in eliminating the right of habeas corpus. Congress must revisit this issue.

It sure is a lot of attractive talk. It would be really great if we could depend on him standing behind it but frankly, I'm not holding my breath. We've been here too many times before and then been disappointed when it comes down to the votes. Still, one lives in hope.

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