GOP (Plus Liberals!) Pushed Torture-Disclosure Provision
More on that new provision in the intelligence authorization bill pushing disclosure on the efficacy of torture. The measure was proposed by Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.) to counter the Obama administration’s portrayal of torture as ineffective, and particularly in light of the release of the Justice Department’s 2002 and 2005 memoranda justifying its use. In the space that the bill summary provides for the GOP minority’s views, they write:
Unfortunately, the released documents, selectively chosen and selectively redacted, do not provide the American public with any objective perspective on the value of the information obtained from these high-value detainees. Indeed, with one highly sensitive document, the Administration declassified virtually the entire memo, except for those paragraphs in which the value of the intelligence obtained was discussed. By requiring the Director of the CIA to provide an unclassified version of these four documents to the public, the American people can make their own assessment of the value of the information obtained from these high-value terrorists.
So the four identified documents, chances are, would support the conclusion that torture yields valuable information. Yet the seven Republicans on the panel were joined by three Democrats: the progressives Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), as well as the centrist Evan Bayh (D-Ind.). Feingold and Wyden are, in general, open-government enthusiasts, so perhaps that explains their vote. The committee’s remaining dyed-in-the-wool progressive, Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), voted with four other relatively centrist Democrats on the committee against the provision.