Kay Hagan OK with FISA Telco immunity

Today I was in Winston-Salem to see Jim Neal address local Dems and hear his views before making my decision on who to support in the primary race the US Senate. When I arrived at the venue I learned that it was actually a double bill, with Kay Hagan as well.

I was told by one of the folks helping organize the event that Ms. Hagan had been invited to appear with Mr. Neal so that questions could be put to both candidates at the same time, highlighting their similarities and differences on the issues of the day. Ms. Hagan, however, declined to appear with Mr. Neal for some reason, so she was first up on the stage and took questions from two moderators, who picked from questions submitted by the audience.

This annoyed me, since if I have to submit my questions in advance and have them filtered, then I can attend a Republican candidate's talk (to their credit when I made this point, in writing, they took some questions directly from the audience during Mr. Neal's time).

Since questions were being screened and I had already heard Ms. Hagan's views I decided to take a walk and come back when Mr. Neal was up. I spent 15 minutes in a nice park catching up on the news on my iPod and began to think that perhaps I should go listen to her again, in the interest of fairness. First impressions can sometimes be misleading, and so I owed her another look. I went back in and listened to her expound on her views.

Interestingly enough, she seemed determined to impress upon us the need for "crossing the aisle" to accomplish legislation. She explains that that is how she accomplished so mush in Raleigh over the years. She expressed no desire to "fall on her sword" for issues when the best solution to them was compromise.

Where do I begin.

First, Ms. Hagan, Washington is not Raleigh, NC. In North Carolina we actually have a few sane Republicans who understand the need to work with Democrats in order to solve North Carolina's problems. This is just not so in Washington. There are no moderate Republicans who will buck the party on any issue of substance. Those that do are driven from office by the howling loons like Grover Norquist and James Dobson.

As a friend of mine recently put it, "Bipartisanship = date rape in the mind of your average Republican on the Hill."

Second, I don't want you to "fall on your sword" for ANYTHING, I want you to brain looney Republicans with your sword and explain to them that the adults are now back in charge of the nation. The fact that you seem to believe that a sword is a device for harming yourself, rather than defeating the opposition speaks volumes as to why you are not suited for the job you seek. We can't expect to accomplish anything in Washington if I and other North Carolinians have to constantly remind you "the pointy side goes toward the enemy."

If I was shocked by naivety about the lay of the political landscape, I was not prepared for the next question she answered.

She was asked if she would have voted for, or against, the FISA bill this week which would have granted retroactive immunity to Telcos for felony violations of the current FISA law.

Ms. Hagan explained that she was against Telcos spying on Americans, but that she would have voted FOR the bill, and granted them immunity, but that future law breaking would not be tolerated.

I'm sorry, but such an answer is worthy of Joe Lieberman and shows that Ms. Hagan is either hopelessly in the pocket of the Telcos, or completely ignorant of FISA, what it entails, and why these people must be prosecuted, or the whole rule of law becomes a joke.

I inferred from her remarks that she believes that the Telcos broke the law with "the best of intentions" and that is why they should get a pass. That AT&T et al, were so concerned about national security they agreed to something they didn't realize was illegal.

Sorry, that is just pure crap. They knew what they were doing, and if we put their asses on trial we'll probably learn the reason they did it was the promise of future contracts (after all, we need somebody to monitor these taps since we don't have enough FBI agents for the job and Halliburton's plate already full). We will also learn that the wiretaps were going on long before 9/11 and that the people being watched were probably probably watched for political, not criminal reasons. Retroactive immunity is the price Bush is willing to pay to keep these people off the stand and talking.

If the Telcos were really so concerned about "national security" then why did they shut down the wiretaps when the DoJ didn't pay the phone bill? If they were just running illegal wiretaps because they were trying to be "good Americans" they apparently aren't prepared to be good Americans if they are not paid for it.

Bush and his Vichy Democrat collaborators frame the Telco immunity debate as being about saving American lives. It is nothing of the sort, unless these same people hold Telco immunity as more important than American lives, then the simple, sensible and ethical thing to do would be to strip immunity from the bill and pass the bill so as "keep us safe", while the issue of Telco immunity is debated separately. The only reason the immunity was put in the FISA bill was so Bush could accused anyone who didn't vote for the bill as helping terrorists and endangering America.

It is a kindergarten-level ploy that seems to be beyond the ken of folks like Kay Hagan, who has apparently fallen for it hook, line and sinker. Either that, or Ms. Hagan puts the welfare of corporations above the law, she'll have to tell us which it is.

No matter how we address it, Ms. Hagan has has expressed her willingness to excuse multiple felonies committed against the American people in order to "reach across the aisle" and "compromise" with the Republicans in the spirit of "bi-partisanship".

For the record, Jim Neal was completely opposed to immunity and would have voted NO on the bill.

Comments

Is she that naive? Or what?

This is exactly what we DON'T need.
Thanks for making us aware!

Bush only wants telecom immunity to shield his own sorry ass

When the law suits start in full swing, the Resident has no control over what will come out in the light. His illegal use of wiretaps will be on the table. He's been able to insulate himself with the trained monkeys he's surrounded himself with so far.

If he really thought America was at risk, he'd go get a damned subpoena.

We don't need another Blue Dog Democrat in DC, Ms. Hagan, no way.

Exactly what I thought

Neal was unequivocal.

No immunity for Telcos. He would have voted against the bill. I was also VERY pleased to hear his views on Iraq (get out and started repairing the men and women whose lives we have ruined).

Ms. Hagan has not only lost me as a voter, she has made me determined to do all I can to see she loses the primary.

Liberalism as a badge of honor! No excuses, no apologies.

Liberalism as a badge of honor!
No apologies, no excuses.

Yuck

I've been trying to give Hagan the benefit of the doubt, but this news, combined with her tax breaks for the rich and unneeded multi-million-dollar corporate incentives in the NC Senate . . . well it just leaves me speechless.

If Kay Hagan wants to help companies skirt the law, she should get a job with Womble Carlyle Sandridge and Rice, where she doesn't have to pretend to give a damn about regular people.

Frontpaged.

speaking as a mother, re:telco immunity

I am just speechless. How did State Senator Hagan raise her three children, if she would treat someone as being above the law? I teach my son that the law is for everyone, that rules are for everyone, and if those companies think that listening to my phone calls and those of how many others was their patriotic duty, let them explain it IN COURT. They can also explain why they stopped it when the FBI did not pay its bills on time.

Telco immunity means that the Bush administration does not have to answer for violations of the Constitution. Who knows? A jury might actually give some companies the benefit of the doubt, GIVEN THE ACTUAL EVIDENCE. That is why we have courts.

Perhaps Kay Hagan is too business-friendly to go to Washington. I think Senator Dole is already doing the corporation over citizen job very well. It is just that, well, the people are getting screwed in the process.

Disclaimer: I am a volunteer for the Jim Neal for Senate campaign. No one pays me, no one asks me to post comments. They, like my support of the candidate, are based on my own personal beliefs and opinions.

I really want to give folks the benefit of a doubt

I am sure Sen. Hagan thinks she is doing the right thing, but no matter how sincerely you believe a lie, it is never true. The lies here are that you can work with Republicans in Washington and that Democratic voters (and admire want bi-partisan politicians.

She is also, it seems to me, another politician co-opted by the culture of fear. Fear makes people stop thinking, and this is just what happened since 9/11.

Liberalism as a badge of honor! No excuses, no apologies.

Liberalism as a badge of honor!
No apologies, no excuses.

This issue is one which seperates Dems from Repubs

In this case, if she actually said that, Kay has fallen on the side of the Republican Mindset.

The immunity clause is actually asking protection for crimes we are not yet aware may have occured, regardless of the extent of that crime. If the Telecoms were indeed simply giving into serious pressure from the Bush administratioin in their complicity of the execution of a crime, they should be able to defend themselves in court.

Kay Hagan, as a US Senator, would be willing to empower the President, Homeland Security and the NSA to violate Constitutional rights which, according to the Constitution are "inalienable". That is a dangerous step which would most definently have a chilling effect on our Freedom, Liberty and privacy as law abiding citizens.

Providing immunity also establishes a legal precedent which will be cited a thousand times as more and more immunity and shielding from prosecution is sought by the government.

Marshall Adame
2014 U.S. Congress Candidate NC-03

She said it, and there were 40 other people who heard it

While I am a new poster here at BlueNC, I have been blogging on politics since 2002 and worked extensively on the e-voting bill

That said, Sen. Hagan seems to be buying into the conventional Bush wisdom that "9/11 changed everything."

David Allen
thoughcrimes.org

Liberalism as a badge of honor! No excuses, no apologies.

Liberalism as a badge of honor!
No apologies, no excuses.

I think it's simpler than that

Hagan is a corporate Democrat. As one of the ringleaders in the NC Senate, she has consistently pushed an agenda that favors North Carolina business interests over the interests of regular citizens. Her Senate buddies are Walter Dalton and Tony Rand. Dalton watches out for Big Energy, while Rand protects Big Banks and Big Insurance. And now it looks like Hagan's holding down the fort for Big Telcos.

(This is why I oppose Dalton for lieutenant governor.)

Great job at Kos, Pam

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

I second that emotion.

And as far as the naysayers are concerned, the times they are a changin'. A little bit of pragmatism is fine, but Jim Neal is way too good a candidate to stuff into a box and toss out.

I can actually see him working in the Senate in my mind (which is a little weird). I'm not claiming to be clairvoyant per se. But I do have special powers. Never doubt that. :)

I'm not 'Kay with that

Ms. Hagan explained that she was against Telcos spying on Americans, but that she would have voted FOR the bill, and granted them immunity, but that future law breaking would not be tolerated.

Like f*#!ing for virginity.

Jim Neal Wrote This at dKos

From a diary by Jim Neal at Daily Kos today:

"As a candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Elizabeth Dole, the people of North Carolina and our nation deserve to know my values and where I stand on the FISA bill before Congress.

As a kid growing up in Greensboro, I was taught to believe in equality and fair play.

That’s why I unequivocally oppose giving telephone companies amnesty for felony violations of the current FISA law.

Equality means the law applies equally to the powerful and the powerless.

Fair play means the telephone companies deserve the opportunity to convince a jury that collaborating with the Bush Administration to listen in on Americans’ private conversations in violation of the law was the right thing to do.

And the American people deserve to know the scope of the wiretapping programs the government is running with our tax dollars. We’ve seen reports indicating wiretaps began before September 11th. The Administration won’t explain what it’s been doing. Its accomplices in the phone companies should explain it in court.

Retroactive immunity would allow the administration to continue to blanket its domestic surveillance operations in secrecy and avoid accountability by pardoning its accomplices.

Retroactive immunity would set a legal precedent for the government and its accomplices to ask for immunity for torture, kidnapping, obstruction of justice and other potential crimes committed in our names.

I believe in accountability, equality and fair play. I believe no one - no corporation and no government official - is above the law.

These are the values I will bring to Washington when I represent North Carolina in the U.S. Senate and why I oppose amnesty for telephone companies.

My primary opponent State Senator Kay Hagan, disagrees. She says she would vote for amnesty for the telephone companies’ violation of the law and our Fourth Amendment rights – just as Senator Elizabeth Dole did.

http://jimnealforsenate.com/

P.S. Unfortunately, I am booked up all tonight and won’t be able to respond to comments until tomorrow – but I will be reading and responding first thing in the morning."

Scrutiny Hooligans - http://www.scrutinyhooligans.us

I'm still here

I'm just busy.

Talk to y'all later.

Not that you care what I'm up to, but I figured a few persons might be interested.

"Hampton Dellinger would make a great Lieutenant Governor." - Al Gore.

"Man is free at the moment he wishes to be." -Voltaire

durned day jobs



Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



***************************
Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

TO hear more about Sen.

TO hear more about Sen. Hagan's positions, join UNC-CH Young Democrats for a Q&A session with her next Monday, February 25th, at 8 p.m. The event will be held in Bingham Hall Auditorium (on-campus), and all are welcome to attend.

Dem Kay Hagan says she would have voted for FISA Telco immunity

Jim Neal has his own diary up at DKos, FISA, Telcos, Equality and Fair Play . UPDATE : Participate in a MoveOn.org poll on this race here . And the DKos thread on this is hopping…) For those of you out there who don't have the North Carolina U.S. Senate race on your radar, it's time to take a look, because you need to see the positions of the candidate the Democratic establishment is backing for the May 6 primary. I know the posts on this race don't usually garner many comments, but folks need to wake up -- adding Blue Dog Dems to the U.

__________________

Recetas

It's May 7, nico. It's done.

I appreciate your passion but the primary is over. At this point we in NC have two choices;

1) NC Dems and progressives can choose to support Hagan and at least help move the Senate as a whole more firmly into Dem control ... or

2) NC Dems and progressives can choose to shoot ourselves and our Party and our country in the foot and keep doing this kind of crap to each other.

Dole is the danger, not Hagan.

Let's go after Dole, not Hagan.

Thanks for posting and reading.

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

right

you don't get everything you want, but you can still get some of it

let's not make the perfect the enemy of the good

- - - - -
McCain - The Third Bush Term

That is something I've been wanting to say

to my fellow former Edwards supporters who've been all about bashing Obama or bashing Hillary on the national blogs for the last few months. It just chaps. my. ass. to no end that they'd sacrifice their country and their children's future -- and everyone here KNOWS that is not being dramatic -- to the likes of George W. McCain just because what was thought to be Edwards' year turned out impossible for him.

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

Oh Leslie..

I just wish you would speak your mind! :)

You'd never know how

sweet and quiet I am in person, would you? :)

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

You ain't foolin' nobody Leslie ~

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

tsk ...

cynics. I am quiet. ;)

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

It's so nice to get home

and be able to see this. They very recently began filtering out most of the bandwidth eaters (youTube, photobucket, flickr, facebook, myspace, etc.) at work so when I look at blueNC now I see a lot of blank space and little x's where pictures ought to be. :( But it makes coming home to check out what I missed really nice.

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."