On what basis are we asked to pass retroactive immunity? On trust. There are classified documents, we’re told, that prove the case beyond a shadow of a doubt. But we’re not allowed to see them! I’ve served in this body for 27 years, and I’m not allowed to see them! Neither are a majority of my colleagues.
There is only one way to settle the issues at stake today. Not on trust—but in our courts. We are not judges. Wherever we stand on this immunity, Mr. President, none of us here are judges.
Real judges and juries—whose courts ought to be our pride, not our embarrassment—deserve to do their jobs. We must allow them to do their jobs.
And that’s all I ask today. Mr. President, let’s have the courts decide. We aren’t here to assign guilt and innocence; we are here to hold open the courthouse door, to ensure a fair hearing to the American citizens seeking redress. And I, for one, will accept whatever verdict results.
This is not a Democratic or Republican issue: this is a rule of law issue. It is about striking the right balance between liberty and security. I absolutely reject the false dichotomy that we have to choose one or the other.
Hat tip to reader Paddy. Votes tomorrow, andLeahy says he’ll support a filibuster. Let’s hope Clinton and Obama will hold to the line as well.
(Yes, if things get crazy tomorrow, we’ll start up the van.)