obama says he’ll vote to support fisa legislation

According to conventional wisdom, the only way a woman will be elected President of the United States is if she’s thought to be aggressive when it comes to the use of our military. Knowing this, it would seem, Hillary Clinton chose to support a war that she knew was wrong. And, I, and many others, held it against her when it came time to vote in the primary. Barack Obama made the right choice on the war, but now it seems that he’s falling into the same trap. In order to come across as strong on terrorism, and thus look Presidential, he’s voting for legislation that he otherwise wouldn’t support. Perhaps it’s not as egregious a violation as voting to authorize an unprovoked, illegal war, but it could still cost him the support of some on the left, who want to support a candidate of character that they can really believe in.

Here’s a clip from the “Washington Post”:

Sen. Barack Obama today announced his support for a sweeping intelligence surveillance law that has been heavily denounced by the liberal activists who have fueled the financial engines of his presidential campaign.

In his most substantive break with the Democratic Party’s base since becoming the presumptive nominee, Obama declared he will support the bill when it comes to a Senate vote, likely next week, despite misgivings about legal provisions for telecommunications corporations that cooperated with the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance program of suspected terrorists.

In so doing, Obama sought to walk the fine political line between GOP accusations that he is weak on foreign policy — Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) called passing the legislation a “vital national security matter” — and alienating his base…

Sens. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.) continue to oppose the new legislation, as does Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). All Obama backers in the primary, those senior lawmakers contend that the new version of the FISA law — crafted after four months of intense negotiations between White House aides and congressional leaders — provides insufficient court review of the pending 40 lawsuits against the telecommunications companies alleging privacy invasion for their participation in a warrantless wiretapping program after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001…

But, I suppose Obama, even with this vote, is still a better choice than that America-hating addict-lover.

My guess is that he won’t lose the left on this. We’re not naive. We know trade-offs need to be made in order to win the White House. We just think it sucks.

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8 Comments

  1. CKL
    Posted June 22, 2008 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    What an obnoxious story in the H-ton Post! Hardly seems the work of an adult. I’m surprised you would bruit it here.

    Maybe I should tell you, Mark (not that I think it will matter) that, while Senator McCain and I are miles apart on most of the issues, I respect him.

  2. mark
    Posted June 22, 2008 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    Sorry about that, Chelsea. I just linked to that piece as an aside. I thought it added a little humor to an otherwise dry post. Like you, I find the piece on Cindy McCain’s drug addiction to be in poor taste. I also found it in bad taste a few weeks ago when she Michelle Obama was referred to as Barack’s “baby mama.” I also found it in bad taste when her fist bump with her husband was referred to as a “terrorist fist jab.” As you’ll recall, I posted those links as well.

    As for Cindy McCain, I don’t care that she was an addict. I don’t care that she stole drugs intended for the poor from a non-profit. People make mistakes… What I do care about, however, are her tax records. Those, I think, should be public. Instead of discussing that, however, the press just lob her softballs.

  3. mark
    Posted June 22, 2008 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    And, for what it’s worth, I once respected McCain too. But that was before he embraced torture and sold his soul to the far right.

  4. Posted June 22, 2008 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    With you on the shift of McCain to the right. The guy took a wrong turn somewhere and doesn’t seem to realize he’s no longer the maverick he once had a reputation for being. McCain..McBain..McBuin..McBuih..McBush.

  5. Brackache
    Posted June 22, 2008 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    How many compromised principles are too much? 3? Well, as long as it keeps those fisa legislation-supporting republicans out of office and doesn’t vote for what you send him to DC to vote for, no principles are sacred. I say this as someone who was similarly decieved by the last administration into abandoning my principles by demonization of the other political party. Take heed or get used to it. Actions speak louder than words.

  6. Posted June 22, 2008 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Repeal FISA is up and running. Anyone who wants to is welcome to sign up and become a Poster on it. The purpose of the blog is to organize a drive to repeal the FISA laws and all laws that pardon or give immunity from prosecution anyone who has violated the Constitution during the Bush Administration.

    That is why we want everyone to be able to Post so they can start a conversation about an idea they have to make this happen.

    Stop on by and check it out. By all means leave a comment and sign up to blog with us as we figure out what needs to be done to return our Fourth Amendment Rights and our rule of law.

    If you have a blog already and you become a poster we will link to your site.

    http://repealfisa.wordpress.com/

  7. dp in ypsi
    Posted June 24, 2008 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I’m sorry to say, that the least-worst conversations are beginning. As in any market place, when competition is limited or squashed, the differences between options becomes a matter of brand loyalty and the few bells and whistles difference therein.

  8. Meta
    Posted June 24, 2008 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    And he’s started wearing the damned flag pin.

    http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1779544,00.html

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