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As diaries go, this isn’t much of one but the information herein is, I believe, both newsworthy, and (for many of us progressives) very heartening. It certainly made me smile this mornin'

It seems hope does spring eternal.

Over the past week or so, President-elect Obama, Vice President-elect Biden, various cable news pundits, and a slew of progressive bloggers have all weighed in on whether the outgoing Bush administration should/will be investigated for ordering the torture of detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib and other U.S. run detainee facilities around the world.

The news has not been reassuring for those of us who fear our democracy languishes every single day that the myriad crimes (especially torture) committed by the Bush administration go unpunished.

President-elect Obama said his team would "evaluate" whether BushCo policies warranted criminal investigations. But, to me (and I certainly hope I’m wrong about this) it kinda seemed as though Obama was more or less marginalizing those investigations by saying it was up to Attorney General designate Holder whether they would go forward or not. Now, I know it is Holder’s job to make these types of decisions, but I was hopeful that Obama would more or less take the initiative on this matter.

But, I digress slightly...

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has now said publicly that while he empathizes with Obama’s reluctance to pursue crimes of the past; he may just take matters into his own hands.

Think Progress has the news:  

"I think that there’s a lot that remains to look at, and I appreciate that President Obama doesn’t want to make it his purpose as a new president, with America in real distress in many directions, to go back and look at all this, but I think we in Congress have an independent responsibility, and I fully intend to discharge that responsibility," Whitehouse said.

Wow, with a smart, bold, patriotic, progressive senator like that I’m tempted to grab da Mrs., the dog and the cat, and pull up stakes here in Florida and move lock, stock and barrel up to Rhode Island. (and if it wasn’t so damn cold up there I’d do just that! LOL)

In a related story, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) has published a 487-page report (part 2) reviewing Bush’s "imperial presidency," recommending that:

"... the incoming Administration finally begin an independent criminal review of activities of the outgoing Administration."

(kinda ironic since Conyers himself neglected to pursue official investigations for the past four years)

Anyway, please show some love to Senator Whitehouse.


Originally posted to markthshark on Thu Jan 15, 2009 at 03:25 AM PST.

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