On yesterday’s edition of Fox News Sunday, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) told host Chris Wallace that he didn’t think President Bush had “legal authority” to engage in warrantless domestic spying:
WALLACE: But you do not believe that currently he has the legal authority to engage in these warrant-less wiretaps.
MCCAIN: You know, I don’t think so, but why not come to Congress? We can sort this all out. I don’t think — I know of no member of Congress, frankly, who, if the administration came and said here’s why we need this capability, that they wouldn’t get it.
The news is not that McCain spoke out against Bush’s apparent circumvension of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which says that the National Security Agency must obtain a warrant before conducting surveillance. McCain also spoke out against the program last month — one of at least 11 Republican senators to question the program.
The news is that McCain contradicts a key piece of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ defense of Bush’s program — that Congress wouldn’t have authorized it anyway. Gonzales, who as White House counsel approved the program, will try to defend the program in Senate testimony next month.
As Gonzales said last month: “We’ve had discussions with members of Congress, certain members of Congress, about whether or not we could get an amendment to FISA, and we were advised that that was not likely to be — that was not something we could likely get.”
In other words, someone is lying.
This item first appeared at Journalists Against Bush’s B.S.