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Thursday, November 10, 2005

Kerry's Black Sites Bill

Kudos to John Kerry for getting a bill passed requiring congressional oversight of "black sites" operations. From The Hill's e-News email:

Amid controversy about the leaking of classified information regarding secret overseas detention facilities, the Senate voted 82 to 9 yesterday evening to adopt an amendment to the Defense authorization bill introduced by Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.). The amendment, one of the few Democratic amendments adopted on the authorization bill, requires the Pentagon and the intelligence community to report on clandestine facilities for the detentions of those captured in the war on terrorism. The amendment would not shut down those facilities if they exist but rather it demands oversight of those facilities, Kerry explained. Under the amendment, the Secretary of Defense would have to deliver to both the Senate and House Defense Authorization Committees a detailed classified report on his knowledge or the knowledge of Pentagon personnel of clandestine detention facilities for those captured in the war on terrorism. The Director of National Intelligence is also being asked to provide a full accounting of all clandestine facilities.
It's a good step. Perhaps this can serve as an impetus for returning the congressional duty of oversight to the chambers. At the very least, it will provoke further debate on the morality and legality of running these damned black sites in the first place.

Now, off to find out who the 9 abstainers were. I wonder if they're the same good hearts as the Torture Nine.

Update [2005-11-10 21:55:18]:: Here's the list of Nay votes. Seems Cochran wasn't among them.
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
DeMint (R-SC)
Isakson (R-GA)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Martinez (R-FL)
Sessions (R-AL)
Stevens (R-AK)
Vitter (R-LA)

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