John McCain has earned his Senate salary these last few months.
Beating the White House is no easy feat, and yet his success and the success of others — as in the battle against John Bolton’s confirmation — is showing that the White House can be tackled and compelled to stand down.
From the Washington Post this morning:
Bush gave his support publicly in a joint appearance with McCain in the Oval Office yesterday, one day after the House gave veto-proof support for the senator’s language in a symbolic 308 to 122 vote. The Senate had already approved the provision 90 to 9. Bush praised McCain’s effort.
“We’ve been happy to work with him to achieve a common objective, and that is to make it clear to the world that this government does not torture and that we adhere to the international convention [on] torture, whether it be here at home or abroad,” Bush said.
Though the White House held out the agreement as a compromise, McCain retained the language he has been proposing all along, which would prohibit the abuse of any detainee in U.S. custody and would also make it a legal requirement that Defense Department interrogators abide by the rules in the Army’s field manual on interrogations.
This same article suggests that Senator Lindsey Graham’s legislation, which is still working its way through the Congress and which would restrict the habeas corpus rights of Guantanamo detainees, may undo some of what McCain has succeeded.
So, this fight to uphold norms consistent with American democracy as well as to protect basic human rights is still not finished.
But McCain does deserve a salute and applause for standing his ground against Cheney and his henchmen.
Anyone know what Cheney was doing when Bush was telling the world that he strongly supported John McCain’s efforts?
— Steve Clemons