The fact that Bill Frist is threatening to neuter the Senate Intelligence Committee is probably a pretty good sign that he doesn’t have enough votes on March 7 to keep them from looking into the illegal NSA wiretaps. His actions (buried in the weekend news cycle) are no doubt meant to put pressure on wobbly Republicans like Hagel and Snowe.
Kyle Michaelis at The New Nebraska Network blog is urging Nebraskans to contact Hagel’s office as part of the Roots project:
Glenn Greenwald provides a full rundown on Frist’s supremely partisan maneuvering, which might well include stripping the Senate Intelligence Committee of the 30 year-old safeguards intended to prevent precisely these sorts of abuses of intelligence for political gain. Taking a page from Tom DeLay’s playbook in the House, Frist might even resort to removing any Republican Senator from the committee who won’t do his bidding.
That leaves Committee member Chuck Hagel, Nebraska’s Republican Senator, in the spotlight and perhaps even in the crosshairs of his own party’s leadership. To be honest, Hagel’s been uncharacteristically quiet about the situation, so he obviously doesn’t think it’s ripe for the type of media attention that he seeks. What the situation is ripe for, though, is proving that Hagel is the independent-minded patriot he tries to present himself as to the American public -doing what’s right, not what he’s told.
Kyle has all the contact info for Hagel’s office, so everyone who’s concerned about the future of these proceedings — and I’ve heard from a lot of you, so I know the numbers aren’t small — please click through and help Nebraskans urge their Senator to do the right thing.
That’s pretty cool.