Buried in that New York Times story I mentioned earlier about Obama’s quest for a CIA director comes this weird quote from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) that
Buried in that New York Times story I mentioned earlier about Obama’s quest for a CIA director comes this weird quote from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) that kind of sort of seems acquiescent to some forms of torture:
But in an interview on Tuesday, Mrs. Feinstein indicated that extreme cases might call for flexibility. “I think that you have to use the noncoercive standard to the greatest extent possible,” she said, raising the possibility that an imminent terrorist threat might require special measures.
Afterward, however, Mrs. Feinstein issued a statement saying: “The law must reflect a single clear standard across the government, and right now, the best choice appears to be the Army Field Manual. I recognize that there are other views, and I am willing to work with the new administration to consider them.”
I’m guessing she meant to revise and extend her remarks — Feinstein is the incoming chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee and probably doesn’t want to enter the committee leadership seeming squishy on torture — so, OK, I don’t want to be an inquisitioner about this. (Irony? Who, me? Never.)
But what are the “other standards” on CIA interrogation she’s talking about? The incoming administration hasn’t proposed any.
I’ve heard one legitimate reason from CIA people why requiring their interrogators to follow the Army Field Manual is a bit of a problem: the manual specifies particular techniques.
Theoretically, if an interrogator modifies a technique somewhat or wants to use an unspecified technique, assuming that none of which would be torture from either a legal or a common-sense perspective, would the requirement prevent that?
Now, it seems to me there are enough agency lawyers to devise a solution to that potential problem, and the concern doesn’t involve an attempt to flout the torture prohibition. But is this what Feinstein’s talking about? I come away from her clarification with more questions than before.
Update: OK, this makes more sense. Feinstein’s office emails what they say is her full statement to the Times. The final sentence, which clarifies matters quite a great deal and is unequivocal about banning torture, was not included in the above quotation. Here’s the statement:
“The law must reflect a single, clear standard across the government, and right now the best choice appears to be the Army Field Manual,” Senator Feinstein said. “I recognize that there are other views, and I am willing to work with the new Administration to consider them. However, my intent is to pass a law that effectively bans torture, complies with all laws and treaties, and provides a single standard across the government.”
Much different than what appeared in the Times today.
Rep. Paul Ryan to deliver SOTU response
Chairman of the House Budget Committee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union Tuesday, according to Mike Allen
Rep. Paulsen allies with medical device industry to relax FDA oversight
Source: Flickr; Republicanconference (www.flickr.com/photos/republicanconference) On the heels of the Minnesota Independent story last week about U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen’s cozy financial relationship with the medical device industry, the New York Times reported Tuesday that some health professionals are alarmed by Paulsen’s push to relax Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight
Rep. Paulsen touts balanced budget constitutional amendment
In a post for the conservative blog True North , U.S. Rep
Rep. Patrick McHenry: Please, Conservatives, Fill Out Your Census Forms!
The conservative congressman from North Carolina, a constant critic of the census -- one of the people who sounded the alarm about politicization when the
Rep. Paulsen, Karl Rove the latest to get ‘glittered’
Rep. Erik Paulsen and former Bush staffer Karl Rove were both showered with glitter at the Midwest Leadership Conference Friday
Rep. Perlmutter to hold constituent meet-up in grocery store
Colorado Congressman Ed Perlmutter will hold a Government in the Grocery constituent meet-up this evening from 5-7 at the Safeway at 38th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. The address is 3900 Wadsworth. The meeting, where Perlmutter typically sits at a folding table and talks to whomever shows up, is free and open to the public
Rep. Perlmutter criticizes House measure that would eliminate 800K federal jobs
Congressman Ed Perlmutter today issued a scathing statement criticizing the House of Representatives for passing a spending bill that could put nearly a million federal employees out of work. The Colorado delegation voted strictly on party lines, with all four Republicans voting in favor of the bill and the three Democrats voting in opposition. Perlmutter’s statement: “My number one priority is to get people back to work because that’s the best thing we can do to pay our debt and move forward toward economic stability
Rep. Pete Stark Won’t Dignify Constituent by, er, Micturating Upon His Leg
In the tradition of Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), California Democratic Rep. Pete Stark revealed at a recent town hall gathering that there are limits to what
Rep. Peace, ACLU seek investigation of soldier’s allegations of racial discrimination in Afghanistan
Both Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) and the American Civil Liberties Union agree: There needs to be an investigation into Spc.
School of Hock
A growing number of college grads are defaulting on their student loans as the economy worsens.