McCain Relentless

It took him long enough, but when he finally gets going McCain can certainly be tough:

McCain Vows to Add Detainee-Abuse Provision to All Senate Bills: The U.S. Senate added language barring inhumane treatment of enemy combatants to legislation that sets military policy, the second major defense measure the chamber has amended with this provision.

The amendment sponsored by Arizona Republican Senator John McCain passed by a voice vote. It was attached to the Senate’s fiscal 2006 defense spending bill Oct. 6 by a vote of 90-9. That bill is being negotiated with members of the U.S. House, including Republicans whose support is in question.

McCain said his intent is to prevent abuses such as those at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. He vowed today that his measure would be “on every vehicle that goes through this body” until it’s enacted into law. “It’s not going away,” he said on the Senate floor. “This issue is incredibly harmful to the United States of America and our image throughout the world.”

I still think he’d be an awful President, but this is good stuff.

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10 Responses to McCain Relentless

  1. BroD says:

    Absolutely. This is nothing less than a battle for the soul of the nation. Our civil liberties are at stake along with our national honor.

    In response to the abuses perpetrated by the Bush/Cheney administration, we must mobilize a broad consensus against the use of torture. In that effort it is extremely helpful to have McCain as an anchor on the right side of that consensus. With his military/pow background, combined with his bull-dog determination, he brings tremendous weight to that role.

    We’re only spectators to the legal dramas and the 2006 electoral battles are ahead of us. Right now, cultivating that national consensus against torture is job one.

  2. Brautigan says:

    Hopefully, he’ll add it to whatever godawful budget reconciliation measure comes out of conference committee.

  3. Sid The Fish says:

    I am not sure that “unrelentless” is the word you want to use in this headline. I think you may mean “relentless.”

  4. michael says:

    Heck, I fixed that typo in about five seconds after posting.

  5. Steve says:

    Dick Durbin’s comments got him in serious trouble back in June for comparing interrogation techniques that the FBI report said were used at Guantanamo with detainee camps elsewhere in place and time. “This is the type of thing you would expect from a repressive regime. This is not the type of thing you would expect from the United States,” he said. Amnesty Internation called the prison “the gulag of our time.”

    When Durbin said “If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime — Pol Pot or others — that had no concern for human beings,” Mitch McConnell and others beat hell out of him.

    Durbin & AI were just a little ahead of the media curve.

    Please look at Rosa Brooks’ take on “Torture: It’s the new American Way” in today’s LATimes:,0,2414917.story?coll=la-news-comment-opinions

    Ms. Brooks does a fine job of looking back at how we all once viewed America in contrast to the USSR. And, how we got from there to where Cheney is telling us that torture needs to be the way America goes forward.


  6. Sid The Fish says:

    >> Heck, I fixed that typo in about five seconds after posting.

    Yeah, I see that now. But the RSS feed went out with the uncorrected version, and the post with the wrong headline is still here:

    See, when you use the title of the post to create the URL for the post, and then you correct the title, you get a new post with a new URL, but the old one doesn’t get deleted.

  7. Chuck says:

    I can only hope to have the Senator stay on message. But given the many times in the past that he has caved in to the Bush Administration, I have my doubts. I hope he shows us wrong, and “sticks to his guns” [ Sorry for the pun ], but I will not hold my breath. One would think that a former POW knows what torture does to the prisoners, but his track record is that he complains, starts the good fight, and then get’s attacked by the “swiftboaters” and shuts up and goes on to other issues.


  8. whatever says:

    and here you were calling McCain a coward the other day.
    okay, to be fair, you said:

    It is hard to accuse a man who obviously displayed great physical
    and moral courage as a young man of being a moral coward now that he’s considerably older.
    But there it is.
    This man does not deserve to be President.

    /Comments? Or has McCain’s essential character suddenly changed in the last week?

  9. michael says:

    I think you may have missed the intermediate post on this subject, McCain’s Belated Redemption?

    But, for the avoidance of doubt, I still think McCain should have started a long time ago. I recognize the argument that ‘politics is the art of the possible’ and that it may be that until now there was no hopes of getting the votes and standing up to Cheney. Nevertheless, on some moral issues, like torture, I think it is wrong to wait, and I still blame McCain for that, especially given his Senatorially unique moral authority on the subject of torture.

    I still think he doesn’t deserve to be President (for this alone, and for other reasons). That said, I also think it’s appropriate to recognize that however late to the party, the guy is displaying bulldog tenacity here, and one can give him credit for that.

  10. Ann Bartow says:

    See e.g. this

    Maybe McCain can win over my home state, but only by sacrificing what few principles the man has managed to hold on to.

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