Inconsistent Standard of “Careful Consideration”
While Senator Chafee toyed with the idea of censuring the President–based on the alleged illegality of the NSA wire-tapping program–he has since stated he’s against the idea. Nonetheless, he’s still convinced that the program is illegal…even though the Senate hearings on it have not yet concluded:
When Chafee was interviewed in January about the wiretaps program, he criticized it but said he would draw no conclusions about its legality or constitutionality until the Senate Judiciary Committee completed its inquiry.
Why, Chafee was asked Tuesday, has he come to the conclusion that the program is illegal, with the committee’s inquiry still under way?
Chafee answered by reiterating his initial criticism of the program. “From what I’ve seen,” he said, the wiretap program “is outside the parameters” of the Constitution’s ban on unreasonable searches and existing law governing such programs.
I recall that also back in January, Senator Chafee refrained from making another decision until he “heard all the facts” and considered them carefully. In that case, it was whether or not he was going to support now-Justice Alito and he stated that he wanted to wait until after the Senate Judiciary hearings were finished before making a (finger in the wind) decision. Apparently, he doesn’t feel the need apply the same careful consideration here, does he? Maybe it was a January thing?
(Cross-posted at OSB).