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More on the Surveillance Issue

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Very interesting clear, in depth discussion about statutes and rulings which have concurred with the legality of President Bush's actions under the authority granted to him by the Constitution.

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"On the Legality of the NSA Electronic Intercept Program

................" There is no mystery about the legality of the NSA intercept program. It is intended to capture foreign intelligence information, including information about potential terrorist threats, and as such, every federal court that has addressed the issue has held that it is within the inherent constitutional power of the President as Commander in Chief. Everything else is immaterial.

This brings us back where we started, i.e., the Constitution. The only constitutional limitation on the President’s power to intercept communications by Americans for national security purposes is that such intercepts be “reasonable.” Is it reasonable for the administration to do all it can to identify the people who are communicating with known terrorists overseas, via the terrorists’ cell phones and computers, and to learn what terrorist plots are being hatched by those persons? Is it reasonable to do so even when—rather, especially when--some portion of those communications come from people inside the United States? I don’t find it difficult to answer those questions; nor, if called upon to do so, would the Supreme Court.

There are, of course, liberal law professors who would like the law to be different from what it is. They are free to develop theories according to which the Supreme Court, should it someday address this issue directly, would rule as they wish. But the administration is entitled to rely on the law as it currently exists. And there is simply no question about the fact that under the Constitution and all controlling precedents, the NSA intercept program is legal. "

Posted by John at 12:34 PM | Permalink  "
Entry #148

Comments

1.
LOTTOMIKEComment by LOTTOMIKE - December 22, 2005, 11:43 pm
its a necessary thing in this war on terrorism.although everyone has different opinions on the matter..........
2.
Comment by shalini - December 23, 2005, 2:14 am
I agree with lottomike.
3.
konaneComment by konane - December 23, 2005, 6:38 am
Check out my next blog entry as to how it was used for domestic surveillance under Clinton, and can only recoil in horror as to how it will be used if Hillary ever occupies the Oval Office.

If we thought illegally summoning and refusing to return FBI files was egregious, a future under her presidency will pale in comparison.

Think Red China and you begin to get the idea.

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