Home / Congressional Research Service Disputes Bush Spin On Pre-War Intelligence

Congressional Research Service Disputes Bush Spin On Pre-War Intelligence

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President Bush and top administration officials have access to a much broader ranger of intelligence reports than members of Congress, a nonpartisan congressional research agency said in a Dec. 15 report.

The 14-page document contradicts the empty conservative spin that the Bush Administration and its cohorts in the conservative noise machine have offered as a defense against critics who suggest the administration cherry-picked information to make its case for the Iraq war.

“Some of the most irresponsible comments – about manipulating intelligence – have come from politicians who saw the same intelligence I saw and then voted to authorize the use of force against Saddam Hussein,” Bush said on Wednesday. “These charges are pure politics.”

Because Democrats have long disputed that spin, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, requested the Congressional Research Service report.

As Democrats had argued, the CRS found: “The president, and a small number of presidentially designated Cabinet-level officials, including the vice president … have access to a far greater overall volume of intelligence and to more sensitive intelligence information, including information regarding intelligence sources and methods. … As a result, the president and his most senior advisers arguably are better positioned to assess the quality of the … intelligence more accurately than is Congress.”

The CRS report identified nine key US intelligence “products” that aren’t generally shared with Congress. These include the President’s Daily Brief, a compilation of analysesiven only to the president and a handful of top aides, and a daily digest on terrorism-related matters.

If only this report had been made available during last year’s presidential campaign. …

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About David R. Mark

  • david r. mark

    I note that no conservative is touching this with a 10-foot pole. What happens when spin is found to be false? All quiet on the conservative front.

    And no, Dave Nalle, I’m not trying to drum up comments …

  • I see your ego didn’t get stroked fast enough again, David.

    The reason no one responds to your posts is that they are transparently propagandistic and not worth bothering with.

    The point you’re overlooking – as you always ignore points that blow the legs out from under your argument – is that while Congress may not have been given exactly the same info as Bush, they do have the ability to ask the CIA for more information or to question them about the information which they have, and none of the information they were given was manufactured or untrue. Plus it wasn’t filtered through the White House, they still got it direct from the CIA which could have sent them anything they felt was pertinent to the role

    Basically, Congress got the highlights but could have asked for the rest of the information. But of course that’s pretty unlikely since according to reports only 5 out of 100 Senators actually read the information they WERE given.

    And good lord, read your second to last paragraph. Bush is briefed daily. Congress is briefed much more infrequently, Of course the information they’re going to be given will be different and more boiled down. In fact it’s probably BETTER information because it’s had time to be sorted and verified more thoroughly and items which prove not to be true over time can be taken out.

    And please note that the report you link to does NOT say that the information provided to Congress was incorrect, merely that it was in a different format and presented differently.

    Once again, you try to manufacture a smear out of nothing. Do you have no shame at all?


  • david r. mark

    “from politicians who saw the same intelligence I saw,” said Bush.

    Not: “From politicians who had access to the same information I saw.”

    Not: “From politicians who weren’t briefed as often but might have received better, more vetted information than I saw.”

    Dave, it’s the NON-PARTISAN Congressional Research Service that issued the report. Not the Democrats. Not Air America. Not Michael Moore. NON-PARTISAN.

    How badly do you want to believe Bush spin?