March 27, 2006
What the ... Did Bush Void Patriot Act's Oversight Provisions with Stroke of His Pen? (What Happened to Checks and Balances?)
A funny thing happened on the way to the Forum...
In Bush shuns Patriot Act requirement, the Boston Globe's Charlie Savage calls attention to the President's official signing statement for the USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005. The statement clearly and unequivocally states that the President believes he is not obliged to obey requirements that the Executive Branch inform Congress about how the FBI uses the Act's expanded police powers. The oversight provisions were included in the Act as amended to insure that the FBI did not abuse the special terrorism-related powers to search homes and secretly seize papers.
Note well the second and last paragraphs of President Bush's signing statement.
President's Statement on H.R. 199, the "USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005"
Today, I have signed into law H.R. 3199, the "USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005," and then S. 2271, the "USA PATRIOT Act Additional Reauthorizing Amendments Act of 2006." The bills will help us continue to fight terrorism effectively and to combat the use of the illegal drug methamphetamine that is ruining too many lives.
The executive branch shall construe the provisions of H.R. 3199 that call for furnishing information to entities outside the executive branch, such as sections 106A and 119, in a manner consistent with the President's constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch and to withhold information the disclosure of which could impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative processes of the Executive, or the performance of the Executive's constitutional duties.
The executive branch shall construe section 756(e)(2) of H.R. 3199, which calls for an executive branch official to submit to the Congress recommendations for legislative action, in a manner consistent with the President's constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch and to recommend for the consideration of the Congress such measures as he judges necessary and expedient.
GEORGE W. BUSH
THE WHITE HOUSE,
March 9, 2006.
Source: White House
NB: I can not recommend too strongly Glenn Greenwald's frightening analysis of Executive Branch arrogance and Legislative Branch cowardice in Administration tells Congress (again) - We won't abide by your "laws"
File under the Return of King George.
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