Senator says Obama employs Bush tactics on spy secrecy

Russ Feingold

Russ Feingold

A Democratic senator has alleged that the Obama Administration is copying the Bush Administration’s tactics by “stonewalling and road blocking” Congress on intelligence issues. Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), the only Senator to vote against the USA PATRIOT Act during its first vote, said during a nomination hearing on Tuesday that he suspects the White House is still withholding information from Congressional intelligence panel members. Feingold voiced the allegation during the nomination hearing in Congress of David Gompert, incoming deputy director of national intelligence, who will serve under director of national intelligence Dennis C. Blair. In recent months, Senator Feingold has emerged as one of the most vocal Democratic critics of the Obama administration’s policies on intelligence and security. Last June, he endorsed a bill that would force US intelligence agencies to make full disclosure of covert spy programs to all Congressional intelligence oversight panel members. He also sided with  US House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence chairman Silvestre Reyes (D-TX), who said that his committee had been “misled […] and […] affirmatively lied to” by the CIA. In September, Feingold led, along with Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), an ongoing attempt in the Senate to withdraw immunity to telecom companies that participated in warrantless communications surveillance during the Bush Administration.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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