Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2005 12:18 pm
Location: Left Coast
|Here's the fourth segment on Keith Olbermann's Countdown Wednesday night and methinks this will play well here in forumland... at least
from our view... the repervies will have problems with it but who cares... rubbs pawws... flexes clawws...
and obtw... I urge you to call YOUR Congressman and urge him/her to
support Rep Hinchley as well...
You DID put all your reps on speed dial didn't you?
October 26, 2005
OLBERMANN: Another expansion of the charges is being championed by
a group of congressional representatives. They want to know whether
the administration and the president in particular deliberately lied
to them about the uranium claims, and in doing so, broke the law.
The effort is spear-headed by New York Congressman Maurice Hinchey
who, along, with 40 other representatives, wrote a letter to
prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald asking him to investigate the reason
for the current probe.
Namely, whether the president`s references to uranium in his 2003
State of the Union Address and in other pre-war documents submitted
to Congress violated two different statutes that the prohibit,
quote, "knowingly and willfully making false and fraudulent
statements to Congress in documents required by law,"
and, "conspiring to defraud the United States."
The scope of Representative Hinchey`s request does not stop at the
president. He also wants Mr. Fitzgerald to investigate uranium
comments made by the then-National Security Adviser Condoleezza
Rice, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell, and the defense
secretary, Donald Rumsfeld. Representative Hinchey joins us now
Great thanks for your time tonight, sir.
REP. MAURICE HINCHEY (D), NEW YORK: Well, thank you, Keith. It`s a
pleasure to be here.
OLBERMANN: The administration retracted those 16 words from the
State of the Union, the CIA blamed itself for letting them go
through the vetting process. Would not some kind of deliberateness
to a falsehood there be hard to prove, considering that someone has
already said this was an error and accepted blame for it?
HINCHEY: Well, I don`t think so. I think that it is clear that
what happened here was a falsification of information. That
falsification was done very purposefully in spite of the fact that
all the information that we have indicates that the CIA was telling
the White House that there was no firm or solid, let alone
definitive evidence that there was a weapons of mass destruction
program in Iraq; and certainly no evidence that there was a nuclear
And based upon a number of sources, including that provided by
Ambassador Wilson as a result of his investigation in Niger, no
evidence of a nuclear program in Iraq. Nevertheless, the White
House went ahead and sent that information to the Congress. The
president delivered it in his State of the Union Address.
In a speech in Cincinnati in October earlier that year, he mentioned
the mushroom cloud. And that image was used over and over again by
high ranking administration officials to strike fear in people in
the Congress and I think across the country.
OLBERMANN: In your letter today, the examples that you cited from
President Bush were indeed, as you point out, made to Congress. But
the one that is mentioned from Condoleezza Rice was made in a
newspaper article. Colin Powell`s uranium reference was made in
Switzerland. Mr. Rumsfeld`s was made in a news conference. How
could those statements be considered as breaking laws governing
falsehoods told to Congress when those statement were not made in
Congress or to Congress directly?
HINCHEY: Well, we cite two different laws. One has to do with
statements made directly to Congress, or written information
delivered to Congress. And those are the first two examples that we
cite in the letter. There`s a second law that provides information
that may be indirectly delivered to Congress by high-ranking
officials in the statements that they make with regard to very
pertinent information which is currently before the Congress.
There were attempts being made at that time by members of the
Congress to hold back on any war efforts in Iraq, because of the
fact that the information was distorted and not clear. And because
many of us believed and now are quite certain that the CIA and other
intelligence agencies were telling the administration that there was
no justification based upon so-called weapons of mass destruction,
and certainly not on the basis of enriched yellowcake uranium coming
from Niger into Iraq, no justification for going to war.
And so those statements are very important, the ones that you just
mentioned. And they are, we believe, violations of federal law.
OLBERMANN: Your party was adamant in 1998 and 1999 that the entire
independent counsel process regarding President Clinton had been to
some degree corrupted and had become and attempt to hamstring an
administration by keeping it in a constant state of being
investigated, really for political reasons. Why would what you`re
proposing to Mr. Fitzgerald not be deserving of the same kind of
criticism from Republicans?
HINCHEY: Well, clearly, we`re in a very, very different state.
We`ve now just lost 2,000 American servicemen and -women killed,
17,000 more than that injured, many of them very, very seriously.
Some people estimate as high as 100,000 Iraqis, at least half of
them, civilians, women and children, killed as a result of this
action. This is a very, very serious action.
In addition to that, the security of this country has been
compromised. Our integrity around the world has been put into deep,
deep question. And as a result of all of that, we are now finding
ourselves in very, very serious trouble. If this kind of activity
is allowed to go unquestioned, unexamined, as it is not being
examined by the Congress, and the Congress should be examining it,
if it continues to go unexamined, our whole democratic republic is
put into jeopardy here and the future of this country is in serious
trouble. This need to be examined and that`s why we`re asking the
special counsel for the attorney general to look into it.
OLBERMANN: Lastly and briefly, have you heard back from him yet?
Do you expect to?
HINCHEY: No. We don`t expect to hear back from him. His
investigation is independent. It was just our intention to bring to
his attention very pertinent facts. It is entirely likely that he
was very much aware of those facts already and may have been going
in that direction. Of course, we don`t know. But we felt an
obligation as members of the Congress, because the Congress had been
deceived by this administration, and because the American people
have been deceived with this whole question of so-called weapons of
mass destruction, we felt an obligation to bring these matters to
the attention of the investigator in this case, Mr. Fitzgerald.
OLBERMANN: Representative Maurice Hinchey from the 22nd District of
New York, thanks for talking with us tonight, sir.
HINCHEY: Thank you, Keith.
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