Archive for January, 2006

January 1, 2006

Bush defends eavesdropping amid calls for testimony (Reuters) »

  • “We’re at war,” Bush said. “I’ve got to use the resourcesat my disposal, within the law, to protect the American people.And that’s what we’re doing.”

January 4, 2006

Top Republicans Give Up Abramoff Donations (AP) »

  • The political ramifications of the Abramoff probe were apparent, with minority Democrats intending to make ethics a campaign issue in this election year. House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said Abramoff’s confession in court was “not a surprise because this Republican Congress is the most corrupt in history and the American people are paying the price.”

January 5, 2006

Harman Faults White House on NSA Briefings (AP) »

  • Vice President Dick Cheney said Wednesday that the program helped to prevent possible terrorist attacks against the American people: “This program is critical to the national security of United States.”

Gingrich Urges GOP Action After Abramoff (AP) »

  • “It’s more important for these Republicans to come clean with the American people about … what (they) did for Jack Abramoff and his special interest friends in return for those campaign contributions,” said Sarah Feinberg, a spokeswoman for the House Democratic campaign organization.

January 6, 2006

Democrats May Delay Panel Vote on Alito (AP) »

  • The final decision will be made after the hearings, Schumer said. “If he is out of the mainstream and will use his tremendously powerful position as Supreme Court judge to impose his views on the American people, then there’s a potential for a filibuster, and no one really knows that until the hearings,” Schumer said.

January 7, 2006

DeLay Abandons Bid to Remain House Leader (AP) »

  • After repeatedly maintaining that President Bush continued to support DeLay, the White House pivoted abruptly on Saturday, issuing a statement that endorsed DeLay’s move. “We respect Congressman DeLay’s decision to put the interests of the American people, the House of Representatives and the Republican Party first,” said Erin Healy, a spokeswoman for Bush.

Analysis: GOP Woes Don’t End With DeLay (AP) »

  • At the White House, where aides had insisted for weeks that the famously effective DeLay retained the president’s support, there was a sharp pivot. “We respect Congressman DeLay’s decision to put the interests of the American people, the House of Representatives and the Republican Party first,” Bush spokeswoman Erin Healy said.

Reaction to DeLay Announcement (AP) »

  • “We respect Congressman DeLay’s decision to put the interests of the American people, the House of Representatives and the Republican Party first.” — White House spokeswoman Erin Healy.
  • “For years, at the expense of the American people, the House Republicans have enabled and benefited from the Republican culture of corruption engineered by Tom DeLay. The culture of corruption is so pervasive in the Republican conference that a single person stepping down is not nearly enough to clean up the Republican Congress.” — House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California.
  • “Tom DeLay is doing the right thing by permanently stepping down. It’s time for a more mainstream leader that reflects the views and ethics of the American people and will make restoring Americans’ faith in government their top priority.” — Rep. Christopher Shays , R-Conn.

January 8, 2006

House Republicans to see leadership battle (Reuters) »

  • “We need to remind the American people of our vision for afreer, safer, and more prosperous America,” Blunt said.

Christian conservatives rally for Judge Alito (Reuters) »

  • Santorum described Alito as a judge who was “unwilling toimpose his views on the American people.”
  • James Dobson of Focus on the Family told the audience thatAlito’s confirmation would mean the end of a Supreme Court thathas imposed its will on the American people in deciding casesinvolving religion.

January 9, 2006

Transcript: Bush Wishes Alito Well (AP) »

  • Sam’s got the intellect necessary to bring a lot of class to that Court. He’s got a judicial temperament necessary to make sure that the Court is a body that interprets the law and doesn’t try to write the law. And so I’m looking forward to your hearings. I know the American people will be impressed, just like I have been impressed and a lot of other members of the Senate have been impressed.
  • And my hope, of course, is that the American people will be impressed by the process. It’s very important that members of the Senate conduct a dignified hearing. The Supreme Court is a dignified body; Sam is a dignified person. And my hope, of course, is that the Senate bring dignity to the process and give this man a fair hearing and an up or down vote on the Senate floor.

Excerpts: Senators’ Opening Statements (AP) »

  • “Groups are trying to defeat your nomination because you will not support their liberal agenda. And the reason they oppose you is precisely why I support you. I want judges on the Supreme Court who will not use their position to impose a political agenda on the American people. I want judges on the Supreme Court who will respect the words and meaning of the Constitution, the laws enacted by Congress, and the laws enacted by state legislatures. … the meanings of the Constitution and other laws should not change unless the people change them. A Supreme Court appointment is not a free ticket to rewrite our laws however you and your colleagues see fit.”
  • “In an era when the White House is abusing power, is excusing and authorizing torture, and is spying on American citizens, I find Judge Alito’s support for an all-powerful executive branch to be genuinely troubling. Under the presidents spying program, there are no checks and no balances. There is no outside review of the legality of this brazen infringement on the civil rights and liberties of the American people. Undeterred by the public outcry, the president vows to continue spying on American citizens.
  • “You have a record as a brilliant but modest jurist, one who follows the law, who exercises restraint and does not use the bench as an opportunity to promote any personal or political agenda. This is exactly what I believe the American people want in a justice to the Supreme Court. It’s exactly what President Bush promised to nominate.”
  • “The Constitution provides for one democratic moment, Judge, before a lifetime of judicial independence, when the people of the United States are entitled to know as much as we can about the person that we’re about to entrust with safeguarding our future and the future of our kids. … we — you and I and this committee — owe it to the American people in this one democratic moment to have a conversation about the issues that will affect their lives profoundly. They’re entitled to know what you think.”

Cheney Briefly Hospitalized, Released (AP) »

  • “The vice president’s doing a great job on behalf of the American people,” he said. “He’s a very important member of the team.”

January 11, 2006

Poll: Americans Want Warrants for Spying (AP) »

  • “We’re at war,” Bush said during a New Year’s Day visit to San Antonio. “And as commander in chief, I’ve got to use the resources at my disposal, within the law, to protect the American people. … It’s a vital, necessary program.”

January 12, 2006

Pelosi Wants Probe of ‘Corrupt Congress’ (AP) »

  • “It’s hard for the American people to understand how corrupt it is here,” the California Democrat said at a news conference.

Frist Weighs Ban on Lobbyist Gifts, Travel (AP) »

  • “It’s hard for the American people to understand how corrupt it is here,” the California Democrat said at a news conference.

January 13, 2006

Ariz. Republican Joins Leadership Race (AP) »

  • “I am aware of the difficulty of winning this election,” Shadegg said in a statement. “I face well-organized opponents with tremendous resources. However, I believe in the power of Republican ideas, and I believe that we need a clean break from the scandals of the recent past. I hope every member of the Republican Conference will join with me in the coming days to craft an agenda of reforms that will fully regain the confidence of the American people.”

Text: President Bush and Chancellor Merkel (AP) »

  • We talked about the war on terror. I told the chancellor that there’s still an enemy that wants to do harm to the American people and others who like freedom, an enemy there that lurks, and that we’ve got to share information and share intelligence and to work carefully to protect our peoples, that the threat is real, and that my obligation as the president of this country is to do everything in my power to protect the people. And we can’t do it alone.
  • The answer to your question is: Guantanamo is a necessary part of protecting the American people. And so long as the war on terror goes on, and so long as there’s a threat, we will inevitably need to hold people that would do ourselves harm in a system in which people will be treated humanely and which ultimately there is going to be an end, which is a legal system; waiting for our own courts to determine how that’s best to proceed.

Guantanamo defense lawyers criticize tribunals (Reuters) »

  • In Washington, Bush told reporters on Friday: “Guantanamois a necessary part of protecting the American people.”

Bush Rejects Call to Shut Gitmo Prison (AP) »

  • President Bush rejected a suggestion by Germany’s new leader that the U.S. close its prison at Guantanamo Bay, saying after a first meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday that the facility is “a necessary part of protecting the American people.”

January 15, 2006

Laura Bush Backs Domestic Spying Program (AP) »

  • “I think the American people expect the United States government and the president to do what they can to make sure there’s not an attack by foreign terrorists,” Mrs. Bush said just before landing here to begin a four-day stay in West Africa.

January 17, 2006

For Senate Democrats, a last stand on Alito (The Christian Science Monitor) »

  • “We hope to go from 1 million [anti-Alito] petitions to a couple of million by the time the committee votes,” says Ralph Neas, president of People for the American Way, which is also launching new TV and radio ads “to express to the American people the magnitude of what is at stake.”

White House Silent on Abramoff Meetings (AP) »

  • Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, along with three other Democratic senators, wrote Bush a letter Tuesday asking for an accounting of Abramoff’s personal contacts with Bush administration officials and acts that may have been undertaken at his request. “The American people need to be assured that the White House is not for sale,” they wrote.

House GOP Leaders Unveil New Ethics Plan (AP) »

  • House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said that “for more than a decade, Speaker Hastert and House Republicans have benefited from their systemic culture of corruption at the expense of the American people. Today, the Republicans’ so-called lobbying reform proposal sticks a Band-Aid on a gaping wound.”

January 19, 2006

Minority Leader Reid Apologizes to GOP (AP) »

  • The Democrats said the record should be “cleared and that any contact you or others in the administration have had with Mr. Abramoff be fully explained to the American people.” Copyright © 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. The information contained in the AP News report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press.

Analysis: GOP Re-Embraces Maverick McCain (AP) »

  • The American people want change overwhelmingly, and the Republican Party is the party of the status quo.”

January 20, 2006

U.S. Rejects Any ‘Truce’ With Bin Laden (AP) »

  • On the tape, bin Laden warned that his fighters are preparing new attacks in the United States but offered the American people a “long-term truce” without specifying the conditions.

Justice Dept. Defends Domestic Spying (AP) »

  • “A spirit of debate is now under way, and our message to the American people is clear and straightforward: These actions are within the president’s authority and responsibility under the Constitution and laws, and these actions are vital to our security,” Cheney said at the Manhattan Institute, a conservative think tank.

Democrats Scold White House Over Spying (AP) »

  • “We are stepping up our efforts to educate the American people,” White House press secretary Scott McClellan said of the trip to the NSA, based at Fort Meade in Maryland. McClellan called the program “a critical tool that helps us save lives and prevent attacks. It is limited and targeted to al-Qaida communications, with the focus being on detection and prevention.”

Analysis: Google Case Raises New Questions (AP) »

  • Bush will visit the NSA on Wednesday to underscore his claim that he has the constitutional authority to let intelligence officials listen in on international phone calls of Americans with suspected ties to terrorists. “The American people want us to do everything in our power to prevent attacks,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan said Friday.

January 23, 2006

White House steps up defense of domestic spying ( »

  • “We are stepping up our efforts to educate the American people about this vital tool in the war on terrorism,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan said. (Related story: Lawmakers say they will press administration on spying)

January 24, 2006

Surveillance program protects country, Bush says ( »

  • The warrantless surveillance began in October 2001. Bush characterized the surveillance program as a concept brought to him by senior aides in response to his question posed internally following the 9/11 attacks: “Is there anything more we can do, within the law, within the Constitution, to protect the American people?”

January 25, 2006

Why Democrats are united against Alito (The Christian Science Monitor) »

  • As President Bush takes his case for domestic eavesdropping without a warrant to the American people in a series of events this week, Democrats are using the Alito debate to raise objections. Before voting Tuesday, Democrats on the Senate Judiciary panel zeroed in on Alito’s statements in support of executive powers, especially in a time of war.

American Red Cross Weighs New Campaign (AP) »

  • “The challenge for us is to mount a campaign with the American people — individuals, corporations, foundations — to talk about our needs to build infrastructure, the reasons to support that, the scale of what we need to do and to raise money specifically to do that,” McGuire told a small audience at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars.

More hearings needed into Bush eavesdropping program: Democrats (AFP) »

  • "Listen to the words of Osama bin Laden and take him seriously. When he says he’s going to hurt the American people again, or try to, he means it," he said. "I take it seriously. And the people of NSA take it seriously. And most of the American people take it seriously as well."
  • "We must be able to quickly detect when someone linked to Al-Qaeda is communicating with someone inside of America. That’s one of the challenges of protecting the American people," the president said.

Analysis: White House Tries to Spin Spying (AP) »

  • “We must be able to quickly detect when someone linked to al-Qaida is communicating with someone inside of America,” Bush said afterward. “That’s one of the challenges of protecting the American people.”

January 26, 2006

Bush Taking Bin Laden Threat Seriously (AP) »

  • “When he says he’s going to hurt the American people again, or try to, he means it,” Bush told reporters after visiting the top-secret National Security Agency where the surveillance program is based. “I take it seriously, and the people of NSA take it seriously.”

Excerpts: Bush News Conference (AP) »

  • “There is no compromise when it comes to, you know, `Hey, come back to the table so you can counterfeit our money, just, you know, counterfeit 20s and not 100s or whatever it is,’” Bush said. “I mean, no. We are going to uphold the law and protect the currency of the American people.”

Congressional Panel Expects $337B Deficit (AP) »

  • “We can cut our deficit in half by 2009 and make sure the American people still get their tax relief,” Bush told reporters.

January 27, 2006

Reid Says Administration Neglecting Cities (AP) »

  • “Democrats want the president and the Congress to have the best possible intelligence, but we can do it under the law,” the California lawmaker said. “This isn’t about whether you want to protect the American people or not, this is about whether you want to obey the law.”
  • The Democratic National Committee will air an ad in Las Vegas on Sunday morning that accuses the president of breaking promises to the American people and catering to special interests. Democrats also plan to air the ad in Nashville when the president visits, a trip set for Wednesday.

January 29, 2006

Sen. Obama Criticizes Filibuster Tactic (AP) »

  • “We need to recognize, because Judge Alito will be confirmed, that, if we’re going to oppose a nominee that we’ve got to persuade the American people that, in fact, their values are at stake,” Obama said.

January 30, 2006

Lawmakers Push Bush on Abramoff Contacts (AP) »

  • “I think this president is a man of unimpeachable integrity,” Pence said. “The American people have profound confidence in him. And as Abraham Lincoln said, `Give the people the facts and republican governance perhaps will be saved.’”
  • “If the American people will put us back in power in ‘06, we will have on the president’s desk things that outlaw all those kinds of behavior,” Dean said.

Frist: Gov’t Unwanted in End-Of-Life Cases (AP) »

  • Asked on NBC’s “Meet the Press” if he had any regrets regarding the Schiavo case, Frist said: “Well, I’ll tell you what I learned from it, which is obvious. The American people don’t want you involved in these decisions.”

Bush Opposes Palestinian Gov’t With Hamas (AP) »

  • “The president is going to be traveling the country to speak directly to the American people,” McClellan said. “It will be an opportunity for the president to lay out in greater detail his 2006 agenda.”

Bush Budget Calls for Renewal of Tax Cuts (AP) »

  • Bush said Jan. 26 that his budget “will continue to eliminate programs that don’t work or that are duplicative in nature, … cut our deficit in half by 2009 and make sure the American people still get their tax relief.”

Senate clears way for Alito confirmation (Reuters) »

  • Conrad, a moderate whose state backed Bush in the 2000 and2004 elections, said, “It is clear that both the majority of myconstituents and the majority of the American people are infavor of Judge Alito’s confirmation.”

Bush Looks for Boost From State of Union (AP) »

  • “I can’t tell you how upbeat I am about our future, so long as we’re willing to lead,” Bush said at a photo opportunity Monday with his Cabinet. Referring to the bitter political tone in Washington, Bush said, “I’ll do my best to elevate the tone here in Washington, D.C., so we can work together to achieve big things for the American people.”