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In case you all missed it, Sensenbrenner gaveled a hearing to a close and walked out of a hearing on the Patriot Act as numerous witnesses and Democratic Representatives shouted to be heard and for a point of order. The microphones were shut down (C-SPAN's microphones remained on) and folks continued to talk as long as they could. It was a shameful, childish temper-tantrum walkout and Sensenbrenner should get at LEAST as much attention as Dean has been getting for such an outrageous action. BASTARD.


Let me see if I can provide a reasonable synopsis, since people are asking for it... and recommending this diary(!! WTF I actually have a diary on the recommended list? Can I get you all to populate my blog too?) People from Amnesty International, etc., were at the hearing. I missed the hearing but tuned in toward the end when Rep. Conyers asked to have each of the 4 witnesses make a final 1-minute statement. Someone objected to the motion and although Conyers attempted to speak, "the chair recognizes himself" and begins to go off about how irrelevant the testimony was. "The Patriot Act had nothing to do with Guantanamo Bay." "The Patriot act did not cause Minutemen on our border." Accused everyone of using the Patriot Act as a "buzzword" -- his word, not mine -- to use "broad-brush accusations against this administration's policies." (No shit, the Act IS one of its policies!) Someone asked him to yield and he refused. When he went into "Thank you all for coming," a whole host of "Mr. Chairman! Mr. Chairman!" and "Will the Chairman yield" and even "point of order" started coming up, but he spoke over all of them, declared the hearing adjourned, banged his gavel, and stomped out of the rooms (but not before stopping to give some instructions to what looked like the techies -- betcha he was saying to disconnect the mikes.) Democrats kept talking for several minutes afterwards, bless them. Hope that helps.

Originally posted to The Witch on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:55 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  You were watching? (none)
    What are the details?  What was the discussion about that led to his walk-out?

    If pro is the opposite of con, then what is the opposite of progress?

    by nupstateny on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:57:34 AM PDT

  •  As I recall (none)
    Sensenbrenner is actually very anti-Patriot Act, but I could be mistaken.

    Vote Harold Ford, Jr - Because at least he doesn't have an (R) next to his name. (TN-1)

    by FleetAdmiralJ on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:00:16 AM PDT

    •  Not that (none)
      it doesn't make his actions childish but...

      Vote Harold Ford, Jr - Because at least he doesn't have an (R) next to his name. (TN-1)

      by FleetAdmiralJ on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:00:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not recently (4.00)
      Sensenbrenner was one of the biggest backers of the crack-down-on-immigrants provisions of the Real ID Act. He tried to stick them into the 9/11 bill last fall but the rest of the leadership didn't go along.

      In politics, sometimes the jackasses are on your side.

      by Dump Terry McAuliffe on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:19:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  He got what he wanted (none)
        With the last budget appropriations bill for Iraq spending, the Real ID Act passed.

        I'll bet he thinks he can do the same thing with the Son-of-Patriot-Act, too.

        We need to nip this in the bud. NOW.

      •  He tried to sink the Intelligence bill (4.00)
        While Senselessbrainer sure wanted his Real ID, Homeland Security with no judicial review, and speedy deportation bill, all unchecked expansions of federal powers by the way, he wanted more to sink the creation of the Intelligence bill.  He and D***head Hunter were the lone holdouts, standing in for the Administration who did not want the legislation but couldn't look weak on national security or face the families of 9/11 who pushed for its passage.

        As we know, Senselessbrainer got his cake and ate it too, with the help of Senator Lieberman, one of the brokers of the deal.

        If you recall, Hunter's "objection" was the law would thwart military intelligence on the battlefield, a weak claim he bolstered by his son's service in Iraq. Ironic that "despite the fact that 20% of our Reservists lack health insurance, Republican Chairman Duncan Hunter stripped this common sense amendment from the bill, denying our Guard and Reserve the health care benefits they deserve, claiming we couldn't afford it."

        FYI, his son is a Marine, not a Reservist.

    •  In 2001 (4.00)
      Sensenbrenner indeed was the biggest speedbump in the PATRIOT ACT's ratification, and played an important role in getting the Sunset provisions, moreso than most of the Dem Senators who've since claimed credit. it was enough to keep me neutral in his last race.

      With his recent actions, I'm now solidly behind his opponent.

      Frame: Don't describe him as a Fascist. Given the makeup of the district, his creation of a system of Internal Passports and sponsorship of the bill mandating Informing on Family Members, let's rename him Comrade Stalinbrenner.

      No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

      by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:50:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He put the Real ID act into an appropriations (none)
      bill. He also rewrote Democratic legislation to suit himself and was caught.

      Howard Dean is not the problem. George W. Bush, the neocon death cult, and the destruction of the nation are the problem.

      by lecsmith on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:10:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  left too soon (4.00)
    darn, I listened to all of it until he started spouting off. I figured I knew what his rant was going to be and went to get breakfast. And I missed all the fun!

    He was an ass the whole way, cutting folks off in mid-sentence when the set time (obviously too short) was over. He refused to take points of order, or only did so when the one asking would no give up. It was ugly.

    In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act.
             ~George Orwell

    by outragemeter on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:06:26 AM PDT

  •  Sensenbrenner (4.00)
    is an embarrasment to the state of Wisconsin. He was the one who had the description of the amendments that Democrats offered on the parental notification act chnaged to read that the Dems wanted to provide protection to sex offenders.

    I don't know if there is any chance of his losing his seat next year, but it would be wonderful if there was.

    Bush, so incompetent, he can't even do the wrong things right.

    by JAPA21 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:11:17 AM PDT

    •  Losing his seat? (none)
      Not really much chance of it.  Sensenbrenner's District is the wealthy, white north suburbs of Milwaukee.  He is firmly entrenched for as long as he wants to serve, and even then he will be replaed by another republican.
      •  I guess you are rright (none)
        I guess that takes in Whitefis Bay, Fox Point, etc, IIRC from my years in the area many moons ago.

        I think the only letter they recognize is R.  

        Bush, so incompetent, he can't even do the wrong things right.

        by JAPA21 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:30:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That would include (none)
          Ozaukee County as well - Mequon, Cedarburg, Port Washington.  Very white, wealthy and conservative.
          •  That's where I live (4.00)
            I'm calling his office now...

            My book Growing Up Red is now available at,, and

            by ColdFusion04 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:26:18 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The Patriot Act has nothing to do with... (4.00)
              Gitmo?  WHAT?!?  Clearly the Patriot Act directly created the conditions required to create Gitmo, by eliminating (or at least limiting) the protections of the 14th Amendment (due process for non citizens).  What an idiot.

              My book Growing Up Red is now available at,, and

              by ColdFusion04 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:06:53 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Be aware, they are taking names and addresses (4.00)
              I told his crony that he should respect our Democratic process and do the job that he was elected to do.  I also told him I found it incredibly disrepectful, especially on matters of the Patriot Act, for Sensenbrenner to be so insensitive to contrary opinions.  Further, I told them that his argument was incredibly peevish, and based on technicalities.

              My book Growing Up Red is now available at,, and

              by ColdFusion04 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:12:59 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  my uncle lives in 'tosa (none)
              his wife is as republican as they come (he's a lawyer, she's an interior decorator).  She's more tolerant than most republicans, but likes being wealthy and wants to stay that way.  Plus she's a devout Catholic.

              a Democrat winning there would be like Al Gore winning the state of Texas in 2000, or Kerry in 2004.

              Give me Liberty or give me death!

              by guyermo on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:20:03 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Proper Terminology (none)
          That's Whitefolks Bay and Fox Hunt Point ;^)
    •  Make sure you support his opponent next cycle. (4.00)
      His name is Bryan Kennedy, who ran last year, and received the highest vote total for Democratic candidate since Sensenbrenner took office many years ago.  

      His Site.

      As of right now I cannot for the life of me find a direct contact email.  But here's a phone number for his Glendale office:

      414 807 2983

      I've tried contacting them several times about interning/netroots outreach but have received no response (yet).  Kennedy should be all over this, and he is being given lots of opps via Sensenbrenner's supreme detachment from the concerns of ordinary Wisconsinites.

      I grew up in the 5th (West Bend), but now I'm represented by a woman I helped get elected, the uber-progressive Gwendolyne Moore from the 4th.

      •  Thanks (none)
        I will put him on my list.

        If you can connect with his office, this would be a great time for him to connect with sites like this.  I think he would get a lot of fundraising done, plus extra volunteers.

        Sensenbrenner is looking more unbalance (emotionally) every day and issues like this and others may be able to sway some voters.

        Bush, so incompetent, he can't even do the wrong things right.

        by JAPA21 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:54:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Excerpt from Kennedy's brief book... (none)
        on "How Congressman James Sensenbrenner Lost his Way - What Millions of Dollars and 26 Years in D.C. does to Your Priorities"

        F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. was born in Chicago in 1943. The heir to the Kimberly-Clark paper fortune is in his 35th year of elected office. Sensenbrenner graduated from the University of Wisconsin's Law School in 1968 and immediately ran for the Wisconsin state assembly. Sensenbrenner stayed in the state assembly until 1975, when he moved up to the state senate. His stay there was brief, as he ran for U.S. Congress a mere 3 years later, in 1978. Sensenbrenner has now held his position as a congressman for 26 years. Sensenbrenner has held office long enough to allow the system to corrupt him. It is time to elect someone who will represent the people, not big money interests.

        Wealthy scion of asswipe (for real) manufacturing.

        Please Wisconsin, make this shitbird go away.

        "But then I viddied that thinking is for the gloopy ones and the oomny ones use, like, inspiration and what Bog sends." -- Alex de Large

        by rgilly on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 04:39:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  He was forced to change the descriptions (none)
      as reported here. I was watching that debate on c-span, and literally made me sick.

      Democracy is the worst form of government except for all those others that have been tried. -Winston Churchill

      by roysol on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:44:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Stalinbrenner! (none)
      of the KGB.

      No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

      by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:54:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Photoshop Genius needed (none)
        to morph an image of Sensenbrenner to a classic image of Stalin.

        High density. I want to blow it up poster size, and display it around his District over the next 17 months.

        No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

        by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 12:03:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  MoveOn Nazi Ad, Part II (none)
          There has to be a more constructive way of making your point than that. It will have approximately the same effect as the MoveOn Nazi ad, namely a bad one, that will obscure the real issues.
          •  The District (none)
            His District is heavily German in origin, and was considered a hotbed of pro-German sentiment before the US entered WW II. So you certainly wouldn't want to Hitler bait him. Stalin would go over ok. The Text would tie to REAL ID's Internal Passports, and his Snitch Act, imprisoning Parents who fail to inform on their kids for smoking pot.

            No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

            by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:33:04 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Guess I shoulda mentioned (none)
              The idea's to use the stalin motif not on behalf of hid Dem opponent, but as a Libertarian stunt. Much cleaner casting for painting Stalinbrenner as a Communist.

              No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

              by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:36:21 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  That's the one... (4.00)
      I remember Rep. Slaughter posting on that some time back.  Yeah, he's definitely an ass.  A petty, spiteful ass.

      Here's a link to the ABC writeup -

      I don't give them hell. I just tell the truth and the Republicans think it's hell. - Harry S. Truman

      by Jensequitur on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:21:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  See (n/t) (none)

      "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

      by Cream City on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:44:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ugly (none)
    I can't recommend enough that everyone catch the replay of this hearing on CSPAN. It will be interesting to see if the play the 19th Hole Party.

    The panelists were so composed. I thought they acted quite mature as the Big Baby cut them off mid-sentence.

  •  Sensenbrenner was defensive, (4.00)
    rude and a bully. I am embarrassed to think that any other country would see our government behaving in this manner. It was totally inappropriate. The panel was polite, informed and cooperative.

    Congressman Nadler's request for a "point of order" being ignored and him then requesting a "POINT OF DECENCY" kinda puts the whole thing in context.

  •  Are you sure that was Sensenbrenner? (4.00)
    That performance sounds more like George Steinbrenner was chairing the meeting. And considering the start the Yankees have gotten off to, he's not in the best of moods.

    In politics, sometimes the jackasses are on your side.

    by Dump Terry McAuliffe on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 08:16:24 AM PDT

  •  Sensenbrenner is a thug. (none)
    After seeing him in action this morning, my hopes and expectations for the DSM hearings next week, are pretty low.  Ugh.
  •  My only comment anymore is (4.00)
  •  House afire? Rats! (none)
    I feel like a jerk for listening instead to the anonymous sources panel on CSPAN3.


    •  I'll be surprised if its not replayed. (none)
      •  Just saw it online - chilling (4.00)
        Reps. Nadler and Jackson Lee instinctively did exactly the right thing, didn't they! And such passion from Zogby:

        I just think this is something totally inappropriate, with no mic on and no record being kept.

        What I think is, we are lecturing foreign governments about the conduct of their behavior with regard to opposition. When I see the behavior I saw here today, as an American I'm really troubled about what kind of lesson this is going to teach to other countries in the world about how they ought to conduct an open society that allows for an opposition with rights - and I'm sorry, I'm very upset.

        Maybe there's hope. Kudos to CSPAN (for continuing to roll) and especially the Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee.

        •  Sensenbrenner gives comfort... (none)
          to entrenched tyrants across the globe with his cavalier and demeaning ham-handed use of parliamentary procedure. Someone should shove a hardcover 1st edition copy of Robert's Rules of Order down his moonfaced piehole.

          Jimmy Shitheadbrenner, you put a smile on "Pootie Poot" Putin's reptilian face with your actions.

          And Kim Jong-il is toasting long life and health to you in Pyongyang.

          "But then I viddied that thinking is for the gloopy ones and the oomny ones use, like, inspiration and what Bog sends." -- Alex de Large

          by rgilly on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 04:16:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  write letters (4.00)
    I don't know if this helps, but after watching Sensenbrenner basically express his disdain for democracy (btw, James Zogby--the pollster's brother--has a great comment towards the end of the video) I sent an email to CNN and MSNBC telling them they should be showing this rather than talking about Dean's latest "controversial" statement non-stop, as what happenend this morning actually affects our country and Dean's comments do not. Like I said, I don't know if having lots of people write emails would help, but when CNN had a totally misleading graph about the Schiavo situation and lots of us sent them emails they fixed their scale pretty quickly.
    •  Zogby was great. As was (none)
      You can see the entire hearing at CSPAN.  Just click on the link to House Hearing on Patriot Act Reauthorization.  

      I didn't have to work early, so I was in bed, watching this spectacle.  I figured it was going to continue, so after almost 2 hours of lying around I decided to get my lazy butt downstairs and watch the rest, while grabbing a bite before I had to leave for work.  By the time I came down stairs and turned on the TV, less than a miinute, it was over and I missed Sensenbrener's melt down, but caught Zogby's remarks.  

      I wasn't surprised, because Sensenbrener was rude throughout AND it seemed to me that most of the mics were off during the entire proceeding.  It seemed to me that only the Rep. asking questions at the time had their mic enabled.  The rest were mute.

      Just a shameful display.

  •  Channel some of your rage (4.00)
    and send some support to Bryan Kennedy for WI-5 in 2006

    I thank you for taking the time to look at my campaign and to learn why I should be the next Representative in Wisconsin’s 5th district.

    In 2004, I was the Democratic nominee and my campaign performed better than any past Democratic challenge to Jim Sensenbrenner, thanks to a newly-redrawn Republican-leaning district that incorporates large Democratic areas of Milwaukee County. I entered the 2004 race knowing that it was likely to be a “two election cycle” race. I would build a base and name recognition in the first campaign and then come back and win the next time around. We need only look 70 miles to our south to see how Rep. Melissa Bean did the same thing in the Illinois 8th district.

    My 2006 theme is “Security, Opportunity, Responsibility.” I believe that my moderate viewpoints are a much better fit for our district than the extremist agenda of our current Representative. I am someone who will defend America, fight for greater opportunities for all, and pledge to be responsible and transparent in my representation.

    "Whenever a Voice of Moderation addresses liberals, its sole purpose is to stomp out any real sign of life." - James Wolcott

    by Madman in the marketplace on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:28:09 AM PDT

  •  This a very Dangerous Man (4.00)
    he is our generation's Joe McCarthy.  The Real ID act was evil enough, but now he's going even farther proposing a Mandatory Reporting law for Drug Crimes

    `SEC. 425. (a) It shall be unlawful for any person who witnesses or learns of a violation of sections 416(b)(2), 417, 418, 419, 420, 424, or 426 to fail to report the offense to law enforcement officials within 24 hours of witnessing or learning of the violation and thereafter provide full assistance in the investigation, apprehension, and prosecution of the person violating paragraph (a).

    `(b) Any person who violates subsection (a) of this section shall be sentenced to not less than two years or more than 10 years. If the person who witnesses or learns of the violation is the parent or guardian, or otherwise responsible for the care or supervision of the person under the age of 18 or the incompetent person, such person shall be sentenced to not less than three years or more than 20 years.'.

    Basically if you see someone smoke a joint and you don;t tell the cops YOU can get 20 years ......

    who have we got in the bullpen for "06 to take this moron out?

    Knowledge is power Power Corrupts Study Hard Be Evil

    by Magorn on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:32:04 AM PDT

    •  this can't possibly (none)
      be enforceable.  The fifth amendment gives one the right NOT to incriminate oneself.  If you're in the position to witness drug deals or consumption, I could see the self-incrimination part looming pretty large.  Even if this were to be passed, I don't see how it could withstand judicial scrutiny.  I just don't see it being enforceable, effective, or constitutional.  But I'm not a lawyer, so what do I knoe anyway...

      It's still upsetting for some people to know that the hippies were the ones telling the truth about Vietnam and trying to help America. - Anonymous

      by eunichorn on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:12:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Judicial scrutiny (none)
        depends on the honor and logic of the judges, who are, more and more, the extreme fringe of psycho Republicans.

        "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

        by TheGryphon on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:43:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Beg to differ (none)
        IMHO, it is enforcable in most circumstances (although 5th Amendment issues would come up on a case by case basis, however there is no need (initially at least) to say what you were doing when you witnessed the drug crime in question, so no taking the 5th).

        Numerous states have laws requiring teachers, medical providers and others to report certain evidence of criminal behavior- e.g. gunshot wounds, suspicious injuries and etc.

        IIRC there is no Federal spousal or parent-child privilege, so there is no out there for the most onerous provision- that a parent is subject to increased penalties for failing to report their own children.  Maybe some substantive due process claim arising from interference with parental rights might make it through, but good luck.

        One last point- the additional penalty for parents also applies to guardians of incapacitated persons- so if you are appointed guardian of your elderly mother and she smokes some marijuanna to help with her glaucoma, you better snitch her out or you are looking at twenty years.  G-d forbid that little Johnnie scores Granny's medicine for her, cause then you are looking at 40 years.

        Might and Right are always fighting In our youth it seems exciting. Right is always nearly winning. Might can hardly keep from grinning. -Clarence D

        by Myrkury on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:57:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Clearly, Sensenbrenner's America (4.00)
      bears no relation to the America our forefathers fought for. Clearly, Sensenbrenner has virtually no understanding of concepts like individual freedom, mutual respect and tolerance and theirvalue in a democratic society based on the rule of law and the rights of the people to expect their government to be responsive to public inquiry and accountable for it's actions.

      This display of petulant, childish, pathetic emotionally unbalanced behavior is a disgrace to Congress and a disgrace to the nation. The people that repeatedly vote this hateful slug into office should be ashamed of themselves for perpetrating this pig on the rest of us.

      Defeat the sound-bite.

      by sbj on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:21:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Prison boondoggle (none)
      Hey I bet he put that in there on behalf of the all powerful prison lobby.  It is a huge industry in the US.  I guess the highest incarceration rate in the world and in the history of the world is just not enough.  Keep feeding the meat grinder machine.  Boy the judges are just going to love this.
  •  The repubs never fail to astound me! (4.00)
    My question is how to get this to the major networks - anyone have a direct email to CBS, NBC and ABC nightly news?  This is dangerous - and to think the smirking repubs actually think that they can get away with this type of behavior, with the approval numbers they and Bush have, makes me wonder about the machines for '06 more and more.

    "If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention."

    by adigal on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:38:56 AM PDT

  •  Bryan Kennedy for Congress (3.90)
    I've never gotten involved or contributed or done much of anything politically.  Thanx to getting on kos here I'm pissed and gonna do something. Small but anytime I see something like Non-SenseNbrenner I'm gonna donate to someone.  Here's to you Bryan Kennedy. Here's to you Kossacks!

    I feel so absurd

  •  sensenbrenner is a bile-spewing maggot (4.00)
    the charles krauthammer of congress.
  •  I used (none)
    to live next door to Sessenbrenner's district in area near Marquette University.  Too close for comfort <shudder>.  Gee, now I live in Sue Myrick's district (NC-9), next door to Patrick McHenry's district (NC-10).  It's been like jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire.

    "In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king." - my dad

    by blueinnc on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:24:26 AM PDT

  •  Sensenbrenner: Douche Bag Extraordinaire (4.00)
    Advice to Nancy Pelosi.
       If Baby Jesus is good to us and makes you House Speaker come January of '07 please do unto the Repigs what they have been doing unto the Dems ever since they took over Congress. They are so asking for it.  And they would regard any display of statesmanship on your part as a sign of weakness.
         If I were you I wouldn't give a Republican minority so much as a pot to piss in.  

    Their greed will be their downfall -- Capt. John Aubrey

    by angry blue planet on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:25:30 AM PDT

  •  What's the story? This thread would be ... (none)
    ... ever so much more interesting if somebody would post a synopsis.

    'Republicans'? Y'mean Privatizing, Downsizing, Court-Packing, Red Ink Republicans?

    by RonK Seattle on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 10:31:41 AM PDT

  •  Sign of the times: (none)
    Just performed a search for "Sensenbrenner" on Google News.  Not ONE mention of this morning's tantrum.
  •  Unbelievable... (none)
    What's worse.. Howard Dean an unelected citizen speaking his mind or a committee chair man elected to represent the people blowing off discussion. Unilaterally..

    Sensennbrenner probably knows its Friday afternoon and the corporate media won't cover it..

    you MUST SEE THE VIDEO.. unbelievable

  •  Also brought to you by the honorable Sensenbrenner (4.00)
    HR1528, the law that will provide us with these liberty-saving laws (among others):

    They want to increase penalties for every drug offense. They want a mandatory 2-year prison term for anyone who knows someone is selling marijuana on a college campus and fails to report it to the police within 24 hours. They want a mandatory 5-year prison term for someone at a party who passes a marijuana joint to someone who has been enrolled in drug treatment at some point in their life. They want to expand the federal "three strikes and you're out" law to include new offenses, including mandating life imprisonment (with no possibility of parole) for anyone convicted a third time under the RAVE Act.

    You gotta love the "Law & Order at all costs = Liberty" Reps.   They're good folks! :-)

  •  Howard Dean (none)
    Should be on the TV demanding an apology for the absolute priggishness of Sensenbrenner. That he [Sensenbrenner] was not acting in a manner befitting the head of a major congressional committee.

    We are strong. We have photon torpedo. We look for things to make us go. -Pakleds, ST:TNG

    by jrm78 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:44:29 AM PDT

    •  Biden and Edwards, at the least (none)
      They could make a better case, too, seeing as their Senators; and they could use this as an opportunity to get their spines back in line with the Democratic party.

      "Think. It ain't illegal yet." - George Clinton

      by jbeach on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:59:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I only had to see the first 10 minutes (none)
    to know I was watching something ugly going down. When he starts the meeting off with a roll call of 10-12 congress reps that weren't there ON A FRIDAY, GOING HOME day, that was enough to turn my stomach. If I'd have been Conyers, I'd have been tempted to punch the ass in the face. I'm sure he purposely set the meeting up for Friday when I'm sure a lot of representatives head back to their districts for the weekend. It was just ugly.
    •  Welcome to no representation. (4.00)
      I think they (the repugs) are making the move to start the process of completely disenfranchising the Democrats in congress. Essentially making them irrelevant. They will do this by running rampant over the rules of conduct in congress. Shutting down meetings, hearings, and anything at any time when a Dem wants to bring something before the people of our country.

      The more the truth comes out, the more they get hurt. The more they get hurt, the more desperate they become.

      We are very close to things getting really ugly.

      Essentially our Democratic Reps will no longer have a say. More then 50% of the population will no longer have a voice in congress.

      And that reminds me of the last time Americans felt they were being taxed without representation.

    •  I spotted trouble yesterday. (4.00)
      Was on the Judiciary Committee website calendar just before 4:00 Eastern, and nothing showed for today. When the announcement post went up here on dkos 15 minutes later, I sniffed gamesmanship in the short notice.

      No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

      by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:20:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  First time i have ever been chilled (none)
    whilst watching C-Span.

    I literally had tingles in my spine. What i witnessed was the death of deliberative democracy.

    Let the Democratic Reformation Begin

    by Pounder on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 03:27:57 PM PDT

  •  the mic.s and lights are going off (none)
    on American Democracy. when they come back on it will be the light of a Fascist America!
  •  Why would I worry about terrorists... (4.00)
    ...when we have people like Sensenbrenner ru(i)nning the country?

    This man is a true enemy of Democracy, an enemy of the State (As defined by our founding fathers), and a greater threat than any terrorist.

    He and his fellow lawbreakers in congress are the greatest danger our country has ever faced. If the American people at large knew what was truly going on by the Republicans, George Bush and the rest of the GOP who support him would be walking home to pull out the feathers and clean off the tar.

    That real Democracy can be shut down at will in such a manner is an affront to truly Patriotic Americans.

    Reason obeys itself; and ignorance submits to whatever is dictated to it. -Tom Paine

    by Alumbrados on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:22:46 PM PDT

    08:15 PM EDT
    2:00 (est.) House Committee
    Patriot Act Reauthorization
    John Conyers Jr., D-MI
    Frank James Sensenbrenner Jr., R, Wisconsin

    11:21 PM EDT
    1:58 (est.)
    House Committee
    Patriot Act Reauthorization
    John Conyers Jr., D-MI
    Frank James Sensenbrenner Jr., R, Wisconsin

    •  Thanks for this (none)
      I was hoping to be able to see it.  How far into it before the fireworks start?  

      Arrogant lips are unsuited to a fool-- how much worse lying lips to a ruler - Proverbs 17:7

      by Barbara Morrill on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:09:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  1:47:20, (none)
        when Sensenbladder "recognizes" himself, which must be difficult these days considering his transformation into a Sith Lord.
        •  But actually... (4.00)
          his entire performance was disgraceful.  And why was he especially a DICK when it came to Congresswoman Jackson-Lee?  

          That was unbelievable!  He wouldn't recognize her early on when she wanted to speak & when he finally did let her speak at the very end he wouldn't let the panel answer her questions & then gaveled the hearing closed?  Just unbelievable!  Can anyone explain that to me?

          "How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?" - John Kerry

          by goldilocks on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:43:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yeah - she kept asking him to yield (4.00)
            and he simply refused! What astonishing arrogance and disrespect.

            And then at the end he completely ignored Nadler's request for a point of order! Truly unprecedented.

            Hubris got the better of him, though, fortunately for us. He certainly figured the show was over when he banged his gavel. Instead, the exchange following his departure took on added significance and power.

            First Sensenbrenner and his cronies congratulate each other on the sidelines, and then Jerrold Nadler's voice rises from the crowd. Lo and behold, CSPAN decides to keep rolling. A rare example of media taking over when government fails.

            Then Nadler pushes away the dead mic, speaking strongly about preserving American freedom and democracy.

            Then Zogby tells us Sensenbrenner's actions are "totally inappropriate," and that he's "very upset."

            Then Sheila Jackson Lee wraps it up beautifully with the remarks she was prevented from making on the record, directly addressing the witnesses who have been notoriously abused.

            It's all out there, on video, if only we can make more people aware of it.

            •  I didn't catch the hearing.. (4.00)
              but.. um... Stepping on Sheila is kinda sorta a bad idea.  She's a long memory and a mean streak, and although she's matured into a pretty good Congresswoman, underneath it all she's a gutterfighter and a publicity hound with very few equals.  If she's been personally insulted she WILL get the word out... and she's sitting in one of the very few almost unassailable seats LEFT.  

              This is a "Too dumb to know how dumb that was" moment.  I feel somewhat better than previously.

          •  oh - but more to your point - (none)
            (sorry, I'm just awestruck by the way this shit went down)

            Yeah, it sure seems Sensenbrenner's main goal was to keep the witnesses answers off the record. At that he succeeded brilliantly.

            What a tool he is.

          •  She was late (none)
            Her name was on that list he read off of the people he thought didn't care enough to show up for the hearing they asked for and he, so graciously, had to follow the rules of the House and convene.
        •  And Mace Windu... (none)
          just smacked his corpulent Sith ass hard with the True Force. Made him all ugly and stuff.

          So, bow to the King of Slime (R-WI), the King of Filth (R-WI), the King of Putrescence (R-WI)! Boo! Boo! Rubbish! Filth! Slime! Muck! Boo! Boo! Boo!

          "But then I viddied that thinking is for the gloopy ones and the oomny ones use, like, inspiration and what Bog sends." -- Alex de Large

          by rgilly on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 04:47:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Absolutely surreal (none)
    So with "TASS" not reporting this little tantrum, please tell everyone you know.

    There's an mp3 link if you can't grab the video.

    A must see...  

    "You can't awaken a man who pretends to be asleep."-Navajo saying.

    by quartzite on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:27:30 PM PDT

  •  The Fall of Democracy in America (4.00)
    I lived in Frankfurt the year the wall came down. I watched the crumbling of the former soviet empire before my very eyes. Seeing this video gives me the same feeling as I watch our democracy insidiously disolve on the world's stage, recorded ever so accurately by this clip. Wow. GoodBye America.

    If we can sit by and just watch without acting further to stop the leakage in this dam, anarchy can only follow. Where are the leaders we need? This clip is as important as the video on 911, only it's more damaging to our country.

    Yes, I'm angry.

    The greatest element of leadership is responsibility.

    by JohnPaul on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 04:30:47 PM PDT

  •  Sensenbrenner is an embarrassment... (none) his constituents, and the people of the United States of America.

    Certainly, no matter how Republican his district is, there are enough independents, Democrats and Republicans with a conscience to be embarrassed and outraged by his behavior.

    Perhaps it is up to us to inform his constituents of his un-American behavior and shame him into an apology to his constitutents, the committee, the House of Representatives and the people of the United States of America.

    It seems to me that Sensenbrenner has handed us a golden opportunity to create a pick-up opportunity next year, where none existed before.

    It's up to us to leverage his outrageous behavior to our benefit.

  •  James Sesenbrenner's contact info--drop him a lin (4.00)
    Wisconsin district 5 (R)



    (202) 225-5101


     United States House of Representatives
    2449 Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, District of Columbia 20515

  •  My letter to he of the gigantic gin blossoms. (4.00)
    Dear Rep. Sensenbrenner,
         I am a veteran, a patriot, and a staunch defender of the Constitution of this great nation of ours. I am today, however, ashamed to call myself an American as a result of your infantile, childish, and unAmerican behavior this morning. Our nation was founded on principles including, but not limited to, the following: fairness, equality, justice, compassion and many other ideals which seem to have been abandoned of late. It is my understanding that we are legally obligated to allow the minority in Congress to air their concerns. Under Rule 11, the minority members of any House Committee (yes, the judiciary comittee included) are expressy allowed to call witnesses as they see fit if they feel a topic needs further investigation and debate. Your childish temper tantrum this morning, attempting to end debate simply because you didn't want to hear what the witnesses had to say, flies in the face of every ideal that our country was founded upon. It has been my understanding that the House Judiciary Committee is responsible for dispensing with all matters regarding human rights violations and the Patriot Act. I submit to you sir, that although (thanks to our complacent media) the majority of American people probably have no idea what you did, the rest of the world is watching. We must own up to the attrocities which have been committed in our "detention centers" in the name of "freedom" and "security" or we will wind up paying a much heavier toll later. Regardless, your actions were abhorant. These witnesses who took time out of busy schedules to appear before your committee this morning deserved better, the Democrats on your committee deserved better, and the American people deserved better. You should be ashamed of yourself!


    "Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives." -John Stuart Mill

    by green917 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 05:53:27 PM PDT

    •  I wrote (none)
      George Miller & Nancy Pelosi about this.  I was much more inflammatory than you, & called for them to file criminal charges & articles of Impeachment against him.

      Your letter is much more level headed.  Good going.

      Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth. Buddha

      by x on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 06:42:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There's a Constitutional bar (none)
        to Criminal Charges (express immunity,) Members of Congress can be removed by their colleagues, but it's not called Impeachment. Last cases I can recall were Trafficant (after Felony Conviction) and Adam Clayton Powell III. I'd suggest anyone wanting to dig for precedents look at Powell.

        Wisconsin law also has a recall provision. Takes a lot of signatures, and it's unsettled whether it can be applied to Federal offices. The wingers collected sigs on Kohl over a decade ago, but fell short, so the Courts never reached the issue.

        No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

        by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:10:39 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Sensenbrenner's actions were illegal (4.00)
    or at least a gross violation of the rules of the House.  The chairman of a committee simply does not have the right to unilaterally adjourn a meeting early.

    Normally, this requires a unanimous consent request.  If unanimous consent is not given, it requires a motion to adjourn which has to be supported by a majority vote of the committee.  He did not follow either of these procedures. Refusing to acknowledge point of order requests which always take precedence just compounds his offense.

    To make it even worse, the meeting he interrupted was one that the Democrats had to request under a special rule because they were not allowed to call a single witness during the main hearing on extending those portions of the Patriot Act that are subject to sunset procedures.  This rule has been available for most of the history of the country but today was the first time the Democrats needed to invoke it since the Republicans took control of the House 11 years ago.

    If ethics still had any meaning under the Republicans, Sensenbrenner's action today, together with his re-writing of the the titles of amendments Democrats proposed to the parental notification law should result in him being removed from the House for repeated gross abuse of his authority as a committe chairman.

    •  Gross abuse, yes (4.00)
      But obviously, this wasn't something that came into Sensenbrenner's head by itself.  This is the carefully orchestrated take down of democracy by the entire Republican party
    •  similar to Bill Thomas's actions last year (4.00)
      when he basically ordered the Dems on the House Ways & Means Committee 'arrested' by the sergeant at arms when they went to meet in another room.

      Thomas was forced to apologize on the House floor and cried when he did it.

      Sensenbrenner must also apologize.

      We need not stride resolutely towards catastrophe, merely because those are the marching orders. -- Noam Chomsky

      by kainah on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 06:50:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  hearing replay on now (none)
    CSPAN, 9:50 PM EDT  Friday night

    We need not stride resolutely towards catastrophe, merely because those are the marching orders. -- Noam Chomsky

    by kainah on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 06:48:45 PM PDT

  •  Full hearing online at c-span (none)
    C-Span has posted the full 2-hour hearing at

    Here is a direct link to the real media file, but I don't know how long it will be valid...watching it myself right now.


    Nosensenbrenner actually had the balls to cut off witnesses in mid-sentence.

    "only dead fish go with the flow."

    by rabelais on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 06:54:14 PM PDT

  •  Media Contact Info (4.00)

    MSNBC's 'Connected' -

    'Countdown with Keith Olbermann' -

    'Inside Politics' Contact Form

    Pat Buchanan, Bob Novak, and Watergate Burglar G. Gordon Liddy dont like Mark Felt. Mark Felt is truly a great man -Jon Stewart

    by jj32 on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:01:03 PM PDT

  •  What's really wierd (4.00)
    As recently as early last year, Sensenbrenner ran Judiciary with a more bipartisan internal process than any other Committee in the House, and fought Hastert for the prerogative to do so.

    I'd love to know whether the shift was strictly in his personality, something Conyers said to him, or blackmail from HastertDelayBushRove. Couldn't have been bribery, he inherited too much of Kimberly Clark to be for sale at conventional prices.

    No-one who voted against the USAPATRIOT Act has lost an election. I am not currently Licensed to Practice in this State. Or Yours.

    by ben masel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 07:28:43 PM PDT

  •  If the Dems are smart (none)
    ..this incident will be Exhibit B in the Republican Abuse of Power argument in 2006 (Exhibit A being DeLay). Given the widespread, bipartisan concern with the Patriot Act, seeing the Republican committee chairman abuse his power to shut down the hearings could be an effective wake-up call.
  •  Watched the whole thing (none)
    found it hilarious.
  •  Sensenbrenner Sickens (4.00)
    Randi Rhodes devoted about two hours to this fiasco today on AAR including interviews with three Democratic Representatives who were participants.  They were all basically shocked by Sensenbrenner's puerile behavior.  They stated that he broke the rules by shutting down the hearing unilaterally.  Also, they stated he bullied the witnesses, accusing them of all kinds of things, then not allowing them to respond.  One of the Reps stated that the Rethugs have been actively engaged in silencing the minority party by not allowing them to hold hearings, not allowing them space to hold meetings or forums, not allowing them to bring their issues and legislation to committee, and generally pulling every trick in the book to shut them out of the democratic process. As mentioned in this thread, the Dems were forced to hold this hearing as a result of the Thugs not allowing ONE witness of the Dems during the original hearing.  And Sensenbrenner inconveniently scheduled it at 8:00 this morning.  The Dem Reps said they had never witnessed such a power grab than is currently taking place in Congress.  

    Howard Dean creates a media tsunami by a remark that is essentially true.  Our loved ones are dying in a war predicated by a BIG LIE to spread "Democracy" throughout the world.  While here in the good old USA, Sensenbrenner and  his ilk are ensuring the destruction of Democracy.  

    Sensenbrenner needs to formally apologize to the committee, the witnesses and the American public who were sickened by his adolescent behavior.

    •  hear hear (none)
      Completely unacceptable. And what are they going to do about it? Just bitch and moan. They're stealing our government and our country in a coup and all stupid Dems like clinton, biden, and obama can do is complain about Dean.

      I like Mike Maloy. I was listening to AA on the way home tonight. He called for Dems to walk out of congress. Bring the media on. Everytime the media asks them a question, ignore and talk about how the republicans are destroying the country.

      He said we need to start calling them what they are. NAZIs. I loved it.  He was almost shouting. I'm so pissed right now. This is like the last straw to me. If the Dems don't do something to stop this BS, then we have truly lost our republic.

      I'm surprised that there isn't more anger in the comments.  Surprise yes but not a lot of anger. This was outright, "YOU DON'T MATTER". We don't need to listen to you, your witnesses, or your opinions.  They have taken over the government.

      The BS with the meeting rooms and dems had to invoke the rules just to get the hearing then scheduling at 8am then this BS. It's not right and if they get away with it then THE REPUBLIC IS DEAD!!!!!

  •  Venue for the Downing Street Minute hearing too??? (none)
    So if this is how the Judiciary Committee deals with critics of the Patriot Act, imagine the show when Conyers et al critique the pResident's lies.  Be sure to tune in!
  •  Sent today (4.00)
    Dear Congressman Sensenbrenner:

    I was appalled at your unilateral shutting down of the judiciary hearing this morning where you broke the rules of procedure.  I was also disappointed in your deriding of the witnesses by accusing them of being irresponsible and other accusations without giving them the benefit of a response. How responsible is it to break the rules of Congress?  How responsible is it to silence the voice of dissent?  Last time I looked we still allowed freedom of speech in this country.  At a time when our loved ones are dying in a war based on misinformation, to spread democracy around the world, it appears that you and your Republican associates are destroying our democracy here in America.  These Representatives were only interested in discovering the truth.  It is truly a shame that you and your Republican associates are not.  I believe you owe it to the witnesses, the Democratic Representatives, and the American public who had the misfortune to witness your actions to apologize for your behavior.  This is NOT was America is about.



  •  Especially chilling was when (4.00)
    he demanded the names of Librarians whose records had been requested.

    It is illegal to tell anyone when library records are demanded...

  •  Apology is insufficient (none)
    I doubt Sensenbrenner will ever apologize.

    All this reminds me of the recent psychotic outbreak from Bill Thomas of California, when he called in the police to intimidate democratic opponents. Thomas had to make a tearful mea culpa after Cheney told him he was expendable. I don't foresee Sensenbrenner apologizing at all.

    But of course, he should. That would be insufficient however and make a mockery of the seriousness of this breach of decorum and ethics. The only true atonement could come from having each panel member reconvened before Congress and give their testimony uninterrupted and complete. Anything less than this solution should result in the immediate boycott by Democrats of the business of the House of Reps.

    •  He'll neve apologize (4.00)
      He was not happy that he had to hold this hearing because it was called for by the Democrats and he had to follow the rules and allow it to happen.  I don't think he was ever going to let this hearing go on much longer than it did.  If he could have stopped it from happening at all, he would have.

      In the end, he didn't help perceptions of himself, the House or the Republican party.

  •  My take on the hearings: (none)
    Mr. Zogby and the gentleman from Amnesty International (forgot name) were doing quite well with responding. They were letting the Congress know that: how we act with the torture of prisoners; renaming our torture tactics as not torture; renaming our POWs to avoid the regulations of the Geneva Convention; and attempting to control this type of information from seeing the light of day, is counter-productive to our noble mission of spreading democracy around the world.

    Every time the republicans would bring up their talking points. They would get facts, statistics and professional opinions blasting their views. It was going badly for God's Official Party because they wanted to continue to torture, detain and dehumanize anyone or any group of people they damn well please at any time they please. And these non-congressional people were trying to make it seem like a bad role model thing.

    So, evidently, god said that this meeting should end. And it ended. And it was good. Amen. Now will you excuse me because my intense snarking has made me need to vomit.

  •  Impeachment (none)
    Remember that Sensenbrenner likes impeachments as he was one of the most obsequious of the "house managers" during the impeachment of Clinton.

    Not likely that it would be done to him though with this stranglehold they have.

  •  My rant sent today. (4.00)
    As an American, and a veteran, I would like to convey my absolute
    disgust at your behavior as you chaired the Patriot Act
    reauthorization hearing today. This is not the deliberative and
    reasoned discussion that people like you have been elected for.
    Shutting down this discussion and storming away from the voice of
    dissent in a tizzy, like a scolded little kid, only makes that dissent
    stronger. In that regard, I say keep it up. But for the sake of our
    beloved nation, I say your actions will only make matters worse.

    However, if this is what must happen in order to purge the likes of
    you and yours from be it.

    I know I am not a member of your immediate constituency - merely a
    fellow American - but I nonetheless stand outraged at your display of
    petulance and irresponsibility. For those who claim to love freedom so
    much, an awful lot of energy is expended preventing the free voice of
    dissent from being heard.

    This American will be contributing to your opponent in '06, Bryan
    Kennedy and encouraging everyone I know to do the same. You clearly
    are not fit to do responsible democratic work on the Hill.

    If you don't get involved with politics, politics will eventually get involved with you.

    by big dave on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:36:56 PM PDT

  •  Unbelievable. (none)
    Demand an apology! Mr. Chairman, I want you to try real hard to act like you give a flying fuck! I demand it!

    So, Sensenbrenner will most likely apologize for his actions today. Just like he was forced to apologize after slandering Dem ammendments.
    "I will ask Speaker Hastert to order Mr. Sensenbrenner to apologize for his behavior to the witnesses at the hearing today, and to promise that this will never again happen," is what Nancy Pelosi's press statement said.

    This will be the second time we demand him to say sorry. Lip service is all it is.
    At what point will our "leaders" demand more than manufactured regret from this man?
    I don't know if there's anything that can be done about this. But I find it outrageous that the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee has acted in a way that throws shit on minority rights - and all we can do is ask for "Sorry 'bout that. Again."

    This is the beginning of a disgusting pattern emerging in Sensenbrenner's abuse of power, and yet another link in the chain of this administration's gross abuses.

    Why isn't this pissing you off more?

    "Fifty percent of people won't vote, and fifty percent don't read newspapers. I hope it's the same fifty percent." - Gore Vidal

    by spasticbean on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:43:03 PM PDT

  •  The repeat is almost at that point (none)
    where Sensenbrener shuts it all down.  On CSPAN, right now.
    •  Pence is on right now (none)
      He gives his opening statement and when it's over, Sensenbrener says his time is up and doesn't want to give Mr. Pitts, from Amnesty International the chance to respond.  Pence is a supporter of AI, but didn't like the "Gulag" title.

      Pitts will give a response, though.

  •  Robert's Rules of Order (4.00)
    State that if the chairman wishes to speak, he must reliquish the chair and speak from the floor. There is no such thing as "the chair recognizing themselves."

    Between Sennsenbrunner and Brian Wilson on Fox, are the neocons finally beginning to lose it? Have we liberals finally pushed them over the edge? I hope so.

    "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." -- Margaret Mead

    by makemefree on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 09:53:11 PM PDT

  •  I just watched the part leading up to the incident (none)
    The Dems were impressives.  They had fires in their bellies.  It was inspiring to watch!

    CSPAN replayed the whole thing, microphone cutouts and all.  The tension in the room was kind of surreal, in a creeping fascism sort of way. :-(

  •  Screw this! (none)
    The ongoing (don't kid yourself) "nukular" threat in the Senate, the marginalizing of
    any dissent, the the escalating majority abuse in the House and the Senate...  There ain't no
    more cheeks left to turn.

    Make 'em read each bill aloud, in full, 3 times, in front of all the Congresscritters before they
    can do anything on it.  Its the rules.

    It's the Neo-conjob, stupid.

    by nargel on Fri Jun 10, 2005 at 11:03:11 PM PDT

  •  WOW (none)
    Cut them off, recognize yourself, refuse to yield, gravel the meeting closed by yourself, turn off the mikes while others are speaking, go home and leave the meeting un- monitored.

    This was way over the top. This video has got to be see and not just read about. Write Sensenbrenner and let him know you SAW what he did.

  •  I was incredibly moved by this. (4.00)
    The video is amazing.  It's got to be seen to be believed.  It's as if the Republicans orchestrated the greatest Democrat campaign commercial ever.

    This video is why I'm a Democrat.

  •  Sensenbrenner's day are numbered. (none)
    Representative's Sensenbrenner's day's are numbered and he knows it.

    The day is coming when Sensenbrenner who is from Waukesha, WI. is going to have to explain his part in the plot to overthrow the government of the United States of America along with Waukesha County District Attorney, Paul Bucher, Judge Kathern Foster and Judge Brown who is the represents Waukesha Coounty on the Wisconsin Court of Appeals.

    These people have a lot of explaining to do when the people here on Dkos get reporters in Washington to start asking the right questions about the right subject. But it isn't going to happen because the truth that will expose these people as traitors they are is derided on this site by many as a "tin hat" story.

    So for the moment everybody gets to enjoy watching Rep. Sensenbrenner lose it for a second or two and feel good about how nice it is to watch Rep. Sensenbrenner squrim when the light is focused on him.

    If anybody on this site goes to these hearings or press breifings really wants to watch a neo-con squrim when the media is focused on them you only have to ask one question. That question is;

    "Is the story of The Kingdom of Infinia' true Rep. Sensenbrenner (or pick your favorite neo)?"

    Follow it up with, "What did you know and When did you know about this?" and "What was your part and involvement in creating the situation?"

    If you live in Washington DC and get to ask any neo-con a question when the media light shines upon them, try it and stay on topic and see what happens.

    Rep. Sensenbrenner can run but he can't hold off the answering the right questions forever.

    "We drew the line in the sand, and like the fools they are, they stepped into the abyss." HMSJO

    by hmsjo on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 12:27:39 AM PDT

  •  primetime hearings (none)
    they should demand that the hearings resume immediately -- but that the hearings should now be during primetime hours.  these are the new McCarthy hearings...
  •  Gotta love the Washington Post (none)
    They open the article up with this crap:

    "The Republican chairman walked off with the gavel, leaving Democrats shouting into turned-off microphones at a raucous hearing Friday on the Patriot Act"

    emphasis mine

    Leaving those crazy shouting Democrats behind, huh?  Daddy had enough of those whiny out-of-control kids apparently.

    Reality check -- am I the only one who didn't hear anyone shouting?  It was more like making a very intelligent point about their RIGHTS TO BE HEARD.

    I was surprised that they didn't manage to take a shot at Dean in the article by the time it was done.


    I voted for John Kerry and all I got was this lousy sticker...

    by diplomatic on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 02:25:46 AM PDT

  •  I'll be interested in hearing... (none)
    ... Rep. Conyers' remarks on this matter. I hope he posts here on the topic.


  •  You guys n gals (none)
    still seem to think the rethug party cares what you think. They dont.

    You think theyre like you.. just misguided. They arent.

    You think they care about democracy, human rights, the working classes. They dont.

    You think they care about civility. About lawfullness. About civility. They dont.

    You think they care about America. That they care for the nation, its people, its citizens. They dont.

    You think they care about the constitution. About the bill of rights. About women, the poor, minorities, children. They dont.

    You think they oppose fascism. That they oppose corruption and tyranny. That they care about Democracy. They dont.

    The time to wake up is long past. Silenced howls of outrage wont do it anymore. It time to get loud. To get mean. To get organised. To get ANGRY.
    To take your country back.

    Because if you dont.. your children wont be able to.

    The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

    by cdreid on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 04:23:59 AM PDT

  •  Email to Sensenbrenner (none)
    Yeah, I agree with the previous poster who said that the Repubs don't care what we think, but I wrote to Sensenbrenner anyway, because I think it's important to let them know that people are watching them.

    Subject: Shameful, un-American behavior

    Dear Representative Sensenbrenner,

    I saw what you did yesterday in the Judiciary Committee hearing, and I was appalled and outraged. Your actions in refusing to allow people to speak in opposition to the Patriot Act were totally shameful and un-American. As the witness said, after you left the room, I'm troubled about what kind of lesson that gives to the rest of the world, about how Democracy should operate. You have abused your power as committee chairman, and I will do everything in my power to ensure that you don't stay in that position.


    But if what you do to survive / Kills the things you love -- Springsteen, Devils & Dust

    by lesliet on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 04:59:55 AM PDT

  •  Another Reichstag fire (none)
    History will condemn us if we do not begin to take America back from these morons now. Obviously debate and representative government are getting in the way of the GOP. I will not be surprised to hear soon about another "Reichstag fire" that will basically render Congress null and void. That thought may be frightening, but take heart. We are standing up and the more we protest, the more obvious the tyrrany becomes.

    "While there is a lower class, I am in it; while there is a criminal element, I am of it; while there is a soul in prison, I am not free." - Eugene V. Debs

    by Dreamer on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 05:34:58 AM PDT

  •  still roiling (none)
    in open phones this a.m. (saturday) on C-span, a few people addressed the topic -- angry at sensennbrenner's gull to shut down the hearings.

    This thing should be all over the media. Oh, I forgot, they don't do real news.

  •  Democrats? Where are you? (none)
       All of you who lined up to pile upon Howard Dean over the last week: I have to admit that it was a brilliant and skillfully choreographed show that I had previously thought was beyond the reach of the usually scattershot and disorganized Democratic Party. You had it in you! Who knew?

      So how about taking this newfound resolve and targeting it on James Sensenbrenner?  You know, he's a Republican and all. The opposition! And he did something really, really nasty. Not to mention probably illegal and unconstitutional.

      Senator Biden? Bill Richardson? Obama? Harold Ford, this happened in your chamber. Any thoughts? The video's there for all to see.

      I await the re-deployment of your new Outrage Machine. You can actually use it against the opposition party now!! Aren't you excited?


    A gay Republican is, by definition, a prostitute.

    by Buzzer on Sat Jun 11, 2005 at 06:33:31 AM PDT

  •  Video available online - Coverage from C&L (none)
    The main page of Crooks and Liars has this story:

    Rep. James Sensenbrenner shut down the Patriot Act hearing

    In addition to providing the video link, there is an item listed from AMERICAblog:

    Sensenbrenner - the totalitarian House dictator who shut down the Patriot Act hearing - lectures DEAN about civility!

    Has Faux News spun this yet? We here in Wisconsin are awaiting our laugh of the day.

  •  Retugs like to promote idea that Dems are angry (none)
    But the fact is that it is them that need anger management. Their behavior of needing things to all go their way. It is getting really bad and I think the only way to deal with these thugs is to fight them tooth and nail.
    We should not lose sight of another side to what went down at this hearing. A remarkable thing happened after Chairman Senslessbrainer left the room. It was at that point, I began to feel hope for the first time since last November..

    The "cancelled" hearing went on in the form of a spontaneous Town Hall meeting (a real TownHall-Meeting) and CSPAN kept the cameras rolling and the mikes turned on so that we could hear the ovations which erupted from the audience in response to the views and reactions expressed, not only by Mr. Zogbe, but by Reps Sheila Jackson Lee , John Conyers and Jerrold Nadler, all of whom, stayed and refused to be shut-down, or shut-up!  

    AND, CSpan covered it all, and repeated their coverage of that hearing 3 times, so far.

    I hope I'm not alone in thinking that, just possibly, something was STARTED yesterday.

    I think that the will towards democracy, in THIS country, and the will to end tyranny, in THIS country, was given a spark, and that spark was fanned by the participants who stayed and spoke up.

    What we need to do, is have the will to keep that spark alive and turn up the heat- On the Washington Post, and the N.Y Times, and how about letting Wisconsin know what their senseless Congressman is up to?

    One more point:

    I always enjoy watching John Conyers work! He's a master, and as I watched him yesterday, and heard him speak, he reminded me what it was like when I heard Miles Davis play his horn.

    Every note was just the right note, at exactly the right place, at precisely the right time...

    This remarkable man - John Conyers- knows how to play, and he knows exactly what he's doing.

    I laughed out loud each time he, oh so politely, and with a quiet dignity said something like:

    "Here, Mr. Chairman, take this shovel. May I get you a Jackhammer?

    You're doing a marvelous job, sir, and applaud your...Mr. Chairman? You're getting pretty deep, there.

    Can I get you flashlight? Some blasting powder, perhaps?

    I had to laugh! I couldn't help it.

    It was like watching Bugs Bunny doing his thing on an unsuspecting Elmer Fudd. Even though Elmer is pointing a loaded shotgun at Bugs, you know how it always turns out.

    And I truly believe, we might just have witnessed a miracle, yesterday- or, at least, the beginnings of one.

  •  Remember (none)
    what Max Baucus said:

    "This is how democracy ends,
    This is how democracy ends,
    This is how democracy ends,
    not with a bomb, but with a gavel."

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