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One of the few positive results of the Vietnam War is the irresistible momentum it gave Congress to pass legislation lowering the voting age to 18. I was proud to be a part of that movement in Congress more than 30 years ago, and today millions of young people across the country can express their support for Barack Obama in the voting booth.

In a little more than a month, the American people will choose which direction to take our nation over the next four years. This choice will have far-reaching consequences for our economy, our health care, our standing in the world, and our children's future.

But in order to have a say in this crucial decision, you must be registered to vote. In many states, voter registration deadlines are approaching very quickly. It's essential that you and everyone you know are registered in time to cast your vote for change.

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When I took to the stage at American University to endorse Barack Obama on Monday, I came face to face with a new generation in American politics.

Standing next to me and in the crowd, on the rope-line and at rallies across the country, I saw an undeniable return of the idealism and hope this country sorely needs.  In this video you can hear the energy and see the faces, young and old, of that new generation:

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I'm headed to the Senate floor right now to speak about startling news from today's newspapers:

The Central Intelligence Agency in 2005 destroyed at least two videotapes documenting the interrogation of two Qaeda operatives in the agency's custody, a step it took in the midst of Congressional and legal scrutiny about its secret detention program, according to current and former government officials.

The videotapes showed agency operatives in 2002 subjecting terrorism suspects -- including Abu Zubaydah, the first detainee in C.I.A. custody -- to severe interrogation techniques. The tapes were destroyed in part because officers were concerned that video showing harsh interrogation methods could expose agency officials to legal risks, several officials said.

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Waterboarding is torture. Torture is unacceptable. Period.

If Michael Mukasey won't stand up to President Bush and tell him that, then he doesn't deserve to be Attorney General.

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Cross posted at Blue Mass Group

I want to make sure you see the latest video from Families USA, one of the most important advocates in the ongoing battle to protect children's health care.

Families USA is part of the broad, bipartisan effort that achieved a solid initial victory last week, when both the House and the Senate approved a bill extending and reforming the State Children's Health Insurance Program. Unfortunately, President Bush vetoed the bill.

Earlier this week, a group of children pulling little red wagons went to the gates of the White House to urge the President to sign the bill, because it's so vital to good health care for the nation's children in the years ahead. I hope very much that President Bush and Congress will hear and heed their plea.

Apparently this President's priorities aren't the same as mainstream America's:

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I'm on my way to the Senate chamber right now for the debate on the Higher Education Bill, which addresses the critical gap in financial aid that prevents vast numbers of students from seeking a college education.

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UPDATE 2: Here are some pertinent videos that were just released on YouTube:

UPDATE:You can listen to Sen. Kennedy respond to your questions on Evoca.

Cross posted at Blue Mass Group

There are those who think that the problem of immigration can easily be solved by walls on our borders and strict law enforcement in our country. I wish they could have joined me last Sunday afternoon at St. James Church in New Bedford. I saw first-hand the pain and suffering of the families and community ripped apart by the recent enforcement raid by the Department of Homeland Security.

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(crossposted on Blue Mass Group)

Update: Video of the speech is now up on The Huffington Post.

I am on my way to the National Press Club in Washington in a few minutes to speak about a new bill. If passed, it will prohibit escalation in Iraq without express Congressional approval of a plan and budget.

President Bush owes the American people a clear explanation about what he's trying to accomplish in Iraq, and that's why I'm introducing legislation that will force him to explain himself.

In October 2002, Members of Congress authorized a war against the regime of Saddam Hussein, not to send our troops into a civil war. I voted against that resolution and feel an escalation of this war only compounds the original mistake of going in the first place.

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At events throughout Martin Luther King Day earlier this month commemorating the great civil rights leader, countless people who care about civil rights today emphasized the major threat that Alito poses to our values of equality and justice if he becomes a member of the Supreme Court, with the power to roll back so much of the extraordinary progress we've made.  I was inspired by their passion and commitment to defend the progress we've made in our country's history.
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At events throughout Martin Luther King Day earlier this month commemorating the great civil rights leader, countless people who care about civil rights today emphasized the major threat that Alito poses to our values of equality and justice if he becomes a member of the Supreme Court, with the power to roll back so much of the extraordinary progress we've made.  I was inspired by their passion and commitment to defend the progress we've made in our country's history.
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Today's an ominous day for the country, a new low since Watergate in terms of openness and honesty in our government.

This indictment is far more than an indictment of one individual. It's an indictment of the lengths to which Administration officials were willing to go to cover up their failed intelligence.  It's an indictment of their distortions about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and their serious blunders taking us to war and their vindictive efforts to discredit anyone who challenges their misrepresentations.

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President Bush addressed the nation once again last night about the war in Iraq, and once again he refused to level with our troops and the American people and offer an effective strategy.

The Administration's view of the war in Iraq is divorced from reality, and does a disservice to our troops and the American people.  Only when President Bush, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, and the rest of the Administration address the realities of what is happening on the ground can we hope to make progress in the region.  

We must hold them accountable for refusing to outline an effective strategy for success in Iraq.

That's why I ask you to join me at my website and insist that the President lay out an effective strategy on Iraq.

http://www.tedkennedy.com/iraqstrategy

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