Tuesday, February 12

Senate Caves in On Telecom Immunity

Despite the efforts of Senators Chris Dodd, Pat Leahy, and Russ Feingold, the Senate has given immunity to the telecoms as prescribed by George Bush in defeating the amendment proposed by Dodd and Feingold. Fortunately the House does not have the same provision in their bill, so it ain't over.

The Washington Post reports:
Senate voted today to preserve retroactive immunity from lawsuits for
telecommunications companies that cooperated with a government eavesdropping
program, decisively rejecting an amendment that would have stripped the
provision from a bill to modernize an electronic surveillance law.

Senators voted 67 to 31 to shelve the amendment offered by Sens. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) and Russell Feingold (D-Wis.). A filibuster-proof 60 votes had been
needed for the amendment to move forward.

The vote represented a victory for the Bush administration and a number
of telecommunications companies -- including AT&T and Sprint Nextel -- that
face dozens of lawsuits from customers seeking billions of dollars in damages.

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