What would you like to say to Steny Hoyer?

by: Matt Stoller

Fri Jun 20, 2008 at 11:10

(I'm going to send this when it hits 50 comments. - promoted by Matt Stoller)

I was writing an email to Steny Hoyer's Chief of Staff to try to let him know how much rage there is out there about his boss's actions around capitulating on the FISA issue, but I realized that my words are probably less powerful than yours.  I'm just one person, so he has no reason to believe me except as someone engaged in hyperbole around a contentious issue.

So instead, please put your comments about FISA and Hoyer in this thread, and I will send it onward.  Please keep in mind that this will be sent to Hoyer's office, so I will delete off-topic or especially rude comments.  If you support Hoyer, let him know that.  If not, let him know that.  And if you are a donor or volunteer for Democrats who won in 2006, mention it, as that will help him understand why he should consider listening.

Matt Stoller :: What would you like to say to Steny Hoyer?

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uphold your oath of office (4.00 / 11)
Hoyer took an oath to defend the constitution. He should uphold that oath.

I want Steny (4.00 / 17)
to read the Church Committee report, especially these two reports:

Volume 4: Mail Opening
Volume 5: The National Security Agency and Fourth Amendment Rights

Then I want him to realize that he is giving power to Bush that we were willing to impeach and convict Nixon for exercising.  And I want him to realize that there can be no mercy and no forgiveness for such a betrayal of American principles.

BooMan .. (4.00 / 3)
you are so right .. it shows that hardly anyone in Congress these days .. even remembers the Church Committee .. it's pretty damn sad

[ Parent ]
What ir really want to say to Hoyer (and Pelosi) and the rest of the 105 is, (0.00 / 0)
crawl into an outhouse and die. It won't hurt because you're already a piece of shit.

[ Parent ]
My letter... (4.00 / 13)
Mr Hoyer,

I volunteered every spare moment I had in Sept, October, and November 06 because I wanted our country to move in new direction. I wanted Democrats to have the power and numbers to stand up to the Republicans. I donated as well. And we won.

Today under your current leadership that new direction, that change, and the Democrats' willingness to stand up to Republicans stands in jeapordy, and my dedication this election cycle stands in question.

Please halt this capitulation on FISA, and do the job you and the other Democrats were hired to do--stand up to the Republicans and their law-breaking policies. Otherwise people like me will throw up their hands and ask why work for the Democrats if they are not going to work for us?

David Ploskonka
Registered Voter in Ohio

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join MoveOn.org and fight for progressive change.  

I just tried to write to him on his site. The site WON'T accept my letter (0.00 / 0)
Here is the reply...

Invalid Zip Code
I'm sorry... Your zip code is not within the Fifth Congressional District of Maryland. To contact your Member of Congress, please visit the Write Your Representative page.

What the hell? So what if I am not in his zip code! Since when does a U.S. Congressman only listen to one zip code of the country?

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join MoveOn.org and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Particularly (4.00 / 2)
When he has a portfolio covering the whole country, if he was some backbencher this would make sense, but Majority leader can hardly claim to only be interested in the views of his direct constituents.

[ Parent ]
Here, have a zip code (0.00 / 0)


The entire House system is set up that way.

John McCain thinks we haven't spent enough time in Iraq

[ Parent ]
Call him (4.00 / 1)
We need to flood the fucking switchboard.

[ Parent ]
I just called. (4.00 / 1)
The rep who answered said: "We need more Democrats and Hoyer would be the first to say this is not a perfect bill."

Apparently nothing will ever change until we control EVERY seat AND the WHITE HOUSE and all the remaining Republicans disappear during the rapture, leaving only liberals back on Earth.  

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join MoveOn.org and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Try this... (0.00 / 0)
You can contact him via the Majority Leader website here:


[ Parent ]
Dear Rep Hoyer (4.00 / 3)
In 2004 and 2006, I worked to help send Sherrod Brown to the US Senate, and keep his seat in Ohio in the hands of Democrats by helping to elect Betty Sutton to OH-13. I also supported Zack Space to turn a red seat blue, and this year seek to send Victoria Wulsin (OH-02) and John Boccieri (OH-16) to replace two Republicans.

In a state the tends more Red than Blue, it's tough to maintain the fight against corrupt Republican interests, such as those involved with the likes of Bob Ney and John Boehner.

The FISA amendment is a mistake, and it's apparent when the telco lobbies spend so much time and money on this type of legislation that it's a mistake. This 'compromise' will benefit the few at the expense of many, and further erode the Bill of Rights.

I want to send Democrats to a House of Representatives that stands for the rule of law, defends the Constitution for all Americans, and defies the wealthy lobbies that seek to undermine our way of life.

Please consider your oath to defend th Constitution. So much depends on you and your colleagues to respresent what is best for America.

Matt Coleman

[ Parent ]
I'm in ohio 14. (0.00 / 0)
Email me. We'll strategerize.  

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join MoveOn.org and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
My brief thoughts. (4.00 / 8)
I was a donor in '06 and '08.

Congressman Hoyer: I know now that you're not interested in defending our Constitutional rights. Stuff like this surrender on FISA makes me feel ashamed for defending and supporting the Democratic party.

And don't insult my intelligence by calling it a "compromise", either. That just pisses me off more.  

When You Destroy The Rule of Law, The Terrorists Win (4.00 / 15)
Tell him that Osama bin Laden will be very pleased with his handiwork.  Particularly this part (from Glenn Greenwald):

Perhaps the most repellent part of this bill (though that's obviously a close competition) is 802(c) of the telecom amnesty section. That says that the Attorney General can declare that the documents he submits to the court in order to get these lawsuits dismissed are secret, and once he declares that, then: (a) the plaintiffs and their lawyers won't ever see the documents and (b) the court is barred from referencing them in any way when it dismisses the lawsuit. All the court can do is issue an order saying that the lawsuits are dismissed, but it is barred from saying why they're being dismissed or what the basis is for the dismissal.

So basically, one day in the near future, we're all going to learn that one of our federal courts dismissed all of the lawsuits against the telecoms. But we're never going to be able to know why the lawsuits were dismissed or what documents were given by the Government to force the court to dismiss the lawsuits. Not only won't we, the public, know that, neither will the plaintiffs' lawyers. Nobody will know except the Judge and the Government because it will all be shrouded in compelled secrecy, and the Judge will be barred by this law from describing or even referencing the grounds for dismissal in any way. Freedom is on the march.

The Soviet Union had enough nuclear weapons to destroy our country physically many times over, and we did some pretty terrible things to the Constitution as a result.  Bin Laden's boys had box cutters, and we do this.  So long Blackstone, hello Kafka.

Steny Hoyer's name will go down in history as one of the most craven men of all time.  And a helpmate to Osama bin Laden.

His descendents will wish he had been a plumber.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

"His descendants will wish he had been a plumber." (4.00 / 3)
Indeed.  I don't want to see this country die in my lifetime, and it's bills like this that move us ever closer to that prospect.

[ Parent ]
Steny... (4.00 / 12)
is reinforcing the perception that Democrats are weak and spineless.

If they will not stand up to a President who has confessed in public to years of law breaking and who's approval is consistently below 30%, how will these craven cowards and capitulators convince voters to trust them in matters of National Security?

The reason Democrats are correctly perceived as weak is that they cave EVERY.  SINGLE.  TIME.

The 110th Congress that was elected to put a check on the rampant lawlessness of this administration  HAS NOT ONE SINGLE accomplishment to point to.

Why should I vote for any of you?

And of course, caving every time leads (4.00 / 3)
to the conclusion that it isn't caving at all:  it's what they wanted all along.  Particularly Mr. Hoyer.  

So my question is:  why?  Why would you, after all the country has been through, elect to give Bush any additional rope with which to hang the country?  It's not like you don't know what he'll do with it.

[ Parent ]
They are protecting themselves (4.00 / 2)
They know that Bush can pardon all his own people and the the telecos, but there is a group of leadership Dems who were informed about much more than they have let on to us, and are therefore complicit in it, and they are afraid of civil suits at least, if not criminal presecution (since neither candidate would do that when he wins).  Bush won't pardon them; at least they can't count on it.

I think this is what motivates Jay Rockefeller.  It can't be money, since he is a Rockefeller, and his seat is safe.  I really think he has to fear being held liable (or else they have something on him).  Pelosi, who was on the Intel Committee, may also be involved, or it may concern stuff that came up after she went into the leadership and she is doing it for Jane Harman. This would also account for Silvestre Reyes' sometimes strange behavior--he is being told to help in the cover-up.

I don't come to these conclusions lightly, but it is the explanation that makes the most sense.

And that makes these people really craven, really duplicitous, and unworthy of support.

I will never give to the DCCC again or lift a finger for any of them.  I will give only to challengers who are at least currently untainted and will be an improvement.

It is really true, what the White Rose group said, that a country deserves the regime it is willing to tolerate.  I understand that the Dems are better for middle class and working people because they will fight for things like S-CHIP and an increase in the minimum wage, and are marginally better on environmental and tax policy.  But still.  This generation of Dem leaders will go down in history as nearly as bad as Bush/Cheney, and they are bar none the worst.

John McCain--He's not who you think he is.

[ Parent ]
Retroactive Immunity is an Outrage! (4.00 / 8)
I am appalled that any Democrat would knowingly and willingly hand over more power to George W. Bush. Furthermore, I am appalled that any Democrat would knowingly and willingly allow large corporations to place themselves above and beyond the reach of the law. I have worked tirelessly for Democrats in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008. I have worked on campaigns, volunteered, given money, and asked others to do the same. Any Democrat supporting retroactive immunity will NEVER receive my support again and I will back any and all attempts to remove that person from office. Congressman Hoyer, you are a disgrace to your party and your country!

Why should I bother? (4.00 / 9)
I'd like to hear from him why I bothered raising money, donating money, volunteering my time, and organizing volunteers in my neighboring districts (mine is safe), to help get Reps. Murphy and Courtney elected.  

Granted, Murphy and Courtney are great Reps and will be voting against this legislation, but what was the point of working hard for them if the leadership is simply going to give away the Constitution?

I've started doing the same thing in the last remaining Republican-held seat in all of New England, but I'm starting to wonder what the point is (don't get me wrong, I'm going to help no matter what because Jim Himes will be a better Rep than Chris Shays).  

I am a worse Democratic activist today because of the House leadership today.  Please stop this so the activists can get back to giving you a bigger majority.

CT Local Politics: Our Primaries are Better than Yours!

We do need to remember (4.00 / 1)
That the Dems are at least marginally better for working and middle class people, in that they will fight for things like S-CHIP and a higher minimum wage, and marginally better on tax and envoronmental policy, to name two.  That makes it worth working for better Democrats.  Even more Democrats where they would replace a bad GOPer.  And with the Dems in power reproductive rights are more safe.  But that said, the leadership and most incumbents are, for the most part, unworthy of support.  Don't give to the DCCC; give only directly to candidates through Act Blue.

John McCain--He's not who you think he is.

[ Parent ]
Rep Murphy (0.00 / 0)
According to FDL, Patrick Murphy voted for the legislation and Rep. Courtney voted against.  

[ Parent ]
If this passes with Democratic support I'll be ashamed of my party. (4.00 / 8)
Seriously, there is no reason to capitulate to the GOP on this issue.  It's not like there is a huge public outcry to grant the Telcoms immunity.

They should be held responsible for what they did or did not do in court.  That's the law.

Congress should not intervene and step in and say "Oh in this case it's OKAY to break the law." after the fact.

I donated to the party in 2006 and planned to volunteer and donate this year.  Opposition to Bush's warrentless wiretapping programs and data mining programs were one of the things that drove me to get involved.

This issue is contentious for good reason and no ground should be given to the GOP on it.

Better to have no bill pass at all rather then pass one that includes any immunity for the telcomms.

As I said when I called your office yesterday (4.00 / 11)
This action shows not just a profound contempt for the constitution, but also for representative government. This bill serves a constituency numbering in the hundreds, people who have violated the law in secret.

The process itself, railroading through a bill because you know it to be both wrong and tremendously unpopular is disturbing.

I think you can be expecting a primary challenge in 2010.

Mr. Hoyer: Isn't it true that you are granting yourself immunity with this law? (4.00 / 6)
FWIW, you can pass that along to all the Democrats who vote for this piece of crap bill -- both in the Senate and the House.  

From Hoyer's district (4.00 / 8)
Free State Politics
I'll leave it to others to discuss the implications this "compromise" has for civil liberties in this country; right now I want to focus on the fact it was Steny Hoyer, my congressman, who engineered it, and has succeeded in getting it voted on with almost no time for debate.

You Should Also Tell Him No One Is Fooled (4.00 / 11)
Like Glenn Greenwald says:

As I noted yesterday, the GOP couldn't even wait for the ink to dry on this "compromise" before publicly -- and accurately -- boasting that they not only got everything they want, but got even more than they dreamed they would get. To The New York Times' Eric Lichtblau, GOP House Whip Roy Blunt derided the telecom amnesty provision as nothing more than a "formality" which would inevitably lead to the immediate and automatic dismissal of all lawsuits against the telecoms, while Sen. Kit Bond taunted the Democrats for giving away even more than they had to in order to get a deal: "I think the White House got a better deal than they even had hoped to get."

Lichtblau himself noted that "the White House immediately endorsed the proposal" and wrote that the bill "represents a major victory for the White House after months of dispute." Reporters Dan Eggen and Paul Kane were even more blunt and derisive in The Washington Post, noting that the Democrats "hand[ed] President Bush one of the last major legislative victories he is likely to achieve"; that "the deal appears to give Bush and his aides, including Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey and Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell, much of what they sought in a new surveillance law"; and that "the negotiations underscored the political calculation made by many Democrats who were fearful that Republicans would cast them as soft on terrorism during an election year."

Why should anyone vote for Democrats, anyway, when they act just like Republicans--but do so out of naked fear, rather than deluded belief?

Thanks for making Ralph Nader look good.  It's something he could never do for himself.  But you manage it superbly.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

I'll be withholding money from the DCCC and the DNC... (4.00 / 6)
until every Democratic Representative who voted for this mess is out of office. I'll give my money directly to candidates who give a damn about principle and actually represent the interests of their constituents.

ironic DCCC note today (4.00 / 2)
From Pelosi and Obama, looking for money.

[ Parent ]
DCCC (4.00 / 1)
anyone who wishes to tell them that they are doing the wrong thing can send their note to


I have been emailing Glennzilla's articles.

[ Parent ]
I can't withhold any less than 0 (4.00 / 1)
I stopped giving to those losers a while ago. I like getting their fundraising snail mail. I like to scrawl all over their request with a sharpy telling them how pissed I am and then send it back in their pre-paid envelop.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
Me too--but they keep sending it. (0.00 / 0)
I told the last caller in no uncertain terms that FISA was the main reason I won't give, and bet him a $1000 contribution that they would fold again.  I knew it was a safe bet, unfortunately.  But they never stop trying.

John McCain--He's not who you think he is.

[ Parent ]
This is disgusting (4.00 / 4)
This "bill" shreds the Constitution, and everyone responsible for it has degraded themselves as lawmakers and as American citizens.  There is no reason or excuse, none, for allowing this bill to come for a vote.  

Mr. Hoyer pushed this travesty through the House to get it passed.  He did so knowing that Americans were overwhemingly against it, and that it is unconstitutional and un-American.  His office even lied about his involvement to his constituents!

I became an enthusiastic supporter of Democratic Party in 2006, because I was disgusted with the administration's illegal and unconscionable activities.  I have been a consistent, enthusiastic donor to Democratic candidates, and worked hard to ensure victory for several of the new Congressmen that make up the Democratic majority.  Obviously, by now I expect illegal, treasonous behavior from the Republicans.   You cannot imagine my disgust and disappointment that in the Democrats are just as complicit in these crimes.

Mr. Hoyer's actions have shown him to be a liar and a criminal, and grossly unworthy of his office.

the rest of what I'd like to say (4.00 / 1)
Is, um, rude.

[ Parent ]
You'll regret this, and maybe sooner rather than later (4.00 / 9)
I met you at an event at the Capital City Brewing Company near Union Station and warned you against passing immunity.  The ONLY reason people are voting for Democrats right now is because they're sick of Republicans passing crap like this bill.  If Democrats do the same thing, what reason do people have to vote for us?  If you want to screw over the Democratic party, this is the way to do it.

Need I also remind you of the first party of your oath of office:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic"

If you pass this bill, you are aiding and abetting domestic enemies of the Constitution of the United States.  I will vigorously support anyone who primaries you if you go down this path as you are violating your oath of office.  My Constitution is worth more than your job.

Won't be forgotten (4.00 / 4)
Representative Hoyer,

Your betrayal of your oath to uphold and defend the Constitution, and your betrayal of the American people in favor of your telecommunications corporate benefactors, will not be forgotten.  I am a constitutional law expert, and it is patently obvious that this sham of a bill--which I have read in its entirety, unlike the sheeple in your caucus who will vote for it without reading or comprehending it--is designed not only to protect telecoms who knowingly violated en masse the 4th Amendment rights of the American people, but also to protect the backsides of Congressional complicitors like you and Nancy Pelosi and Jay Rockefeller.  You all knew the Bush Administration was illegally spying on the American public, and you went along with it so you wouldn't look "soft" on terrorism.

I will not donate a single penny to the DCCC or DSCC so long as you are in a position of any power.  I will not donate a penny to any candidate who does not pledge to undo the massive damage to the Constitution which you and your cowardly colleagues have wrought.  And, I'm not alone.  I was formerly a prodigious fundraiser for the Democratic Party; no more.  I have already signed up 15 of my recruited substantial donors to join me in this pledge; that represents about $75,000, spread over various candidates and committees.  And I'm not done yet.

I grew up in Steny's district. (4.00 / 2)

I'm still in touch with lots of folks there (and throughout the state of Maryland) who are bitterly disappointed by his capitulation on FISA.  Sen. Cardin has consistently voted against telecom immunity -- why doesn't Rep. Hoyer?

I worked round the clock for Democrats in 2006, specifically Senators Cardin and Webb, and plan to do so again this cycle.  

John McCain thinks we haven't spent enough time in Iraq

Why do democrats even want to win? (4.00 / 3)
We were told in early 2006 how everything would be different when the Democrats got the majority in Congress.  Instead, almost nothing has been different.  The funding for the war has continued unabated, and with no checks on the President's authority to continue the war.  There have been none of the public hearings on the crimes committed by the executive branch over the past seven years, and even some of the basic reforms that have been attempted have faced filibusters and Presidential vetoes, at minimal political cost to the Republicans.

Through all of it, however, there has been one shining triumph of the Democratic caucus: they have not allowed a reform of the (already poor--secret courts are not a tool of Democracy) FISA law that would give immunity to telecom companies (and by extension, Bush, Cheney, Rmusfeld, et. al.) for breaking the law.  Now, the Democratic Caucus, at the urging, of you, Mr. Hoyer, is going to bail out on that.  

Are the Democrats ever going to do anything that makes me excited about them?  Anything that justifies their existence beyond being not-Republicans?  Mr. Hoyer, why should I support the Democratic party when it does such things as this?

So much wrong. So little time... (4.00 / 2)
With less than 24 hours to digest this compromise/capitulation bill it is hard for me to grapple with all the nuances, which certainly speaks to your commitment to transparency. That said, the brazen effort to include telecom immunity provisions in a bill ostensibly designed to protect our national security and our civil liberties is easy enough for me to grok. Lets be honest, this provision has nothing to do with either of those causes and is just a crass effort to protect your friends in the telecom industry from being held accountable for their actions.

At an even deeper level, we have a judicial branch for a reason: to ensure our laws are upheld and hold those who violate those laws accountable. Ex-post provisioning of immunity for those who may, or may not, have broken the law by the legislative branch runs contra to the very notion of our separation of powers.

Best of luck in your future endeavors protecting business interests, screwing the little guy and compromising by giving away everything in negotiation that you are ostensibly in favor of.  

"secrecy" is the biggest threat to public faith in government (4.00 / 6)
The great injury incurred by the FISA bill is not in the details of the legislation.  Certainly, I am disappointed that a Democratic majority should compromise on tracking down chains of responsibility for violating the Bill of Rights. But  what worries me more is the way this bill will feed the widespread public perception that our government is mired in secrecy. Over the past 8 years, growing public resentment of that secrecy has led to the greatest spike in cynicism towards government in U.S. history.  

And so we come to the FISA debate. Certainly, there was an argument to be made about who was really at fault when an arrogant President lied and manipulated the telecom industry into widespread violation of the privacy of every American citizen.  I welcomed that debate.  But we could stand up in front of the American people and claim to be their leaders if we did not first not show them clearly and without question that we are opposed to a government grounded in secrecy--and that we seek to rid our government of the poison of secrecy at every conceivable opportunity.  

Here--in this legislative moment--an opportunity arose.  And it was passed over.  The leadership of the Congress had an opportunity to reverse that trend--a chance to stand up proudly before the electorate with a bill that proclaimed that we believe in a democratic government for, not hidden from, the people--and it did, not, happen.

Failure to recognize the very thing the people of this country want and need and deserve from their leaders right now is an error beyond the text of any bill.  It is a dangerous sign that the leadership lacks interest in the public that elected them.  And that worries me very much.

So, please:  Even in the wake of a bill that will never be embraced by the American people--it is not too late to stand up and speak strongly against secrecy.  To not do that is to risk tipping this country into a stupor of cynicism that could last for decades.  No country can afford to take that risk.  Ours certainly cannot.

Dear Mr. Hoyer: (4.00 / 9)
Like thousands of others, I spend occasional evenings calling strangers at home, and asking them to vote Democratic. I don't get paid; I'd rather stay home with my wife, read a book or watch TV. Instead, I drive twenty minutes to turn myself into a telemarketer, of all things.

I do this because I love my country, and I know that supporting the Democratic Party is one of the best ways to help the country move forward.

So the fact that you're apparently allowing an abdication of your responsibility, and of our values and principles, on the FISA issue, is tremendously disheartening. How am I--how are all of us anonymous volunteers--supposed to drag ourselves away from our hobbies and our families when instead of rewarding us by fighting for us,  you punish us with capitulation?

I think people in your position have one great misunderstanding about people in my position: We don't demand that you win, we demand that you fight. Fight for our party, fight for our country, fight for our Democratic values and our democratic principles.

That's all we expect. And when you fail to fight, as you're now doing, you shame not just yourself and your party, but people like me. You make liars of us when we knock on our neighbor's doors and tell them the Democratic Party represents real change, real judgment, and real values.

FISA (4.00 / 4)
While everyone may have varying opinions about what level of leeway the NSA should have in accessing raw telco data, the bottom line remains that the President can't and shouldn't have unlimited leeway in circumventing the law. By pressing for the current "compromise" you are giving the current President and all future Presidents the freedom to act contrary to any and all controls that were put in place by the Framers of our Constitution.

If the President is free to order violations of the law and his AG is free to shred whatever civil recourse the victims of those violations may have, then we might as well go ahead and declare the rest of the Constitution null and void as well.

Congressman Hoyer: (4.00 / 4)
I don't like being spied upon when there is no probable cause that I have or will commit a crime. It is pretty clear to me, and to most Democrats, that allowing illegal domestic spying is what this FISA bill is all about. Amnesty for criminals who sold out our constitution for profit is a terrible precedent. I don't know who you think you are representing with this  FISA bill, but it is certainly not the Democratic party. We do not need political contributions from telcos in order to win elections, so this is a very bad trade-off.

ec=-8.50 soc=-8.41   (3,967 Watts)

Have you no shame, sir? (4.00 / 3)
Do you truly believe that the American people are so stupid that we cannot see what you and your weak-kneed cohorts are doing?

There will be accountability, sir, and you will be held accountable.

Count on it.

Soldiers are required to do their jobs when politicians fail to do theirs.

Dear Congressman Hoyer (4.00 / 6)
I am Maryland resident who volunteered to help elect Donna Edwards to Congress and who has donated to a variety of progressive politicians nationwide. I am one of many liberal Americans who have become fed up in recent years with the reactionary character of our national politics and decided to "get off the bench" and get involved.

I don't pretend to know what motivates your efforts to overturn our cherished Constitutional freedoms. I don't care. If you don't stop those efforts, we are going to come after you, using every legal means we can find. We will work tirelessly to end the hold on political power enjoyed by you and political figures like you, who serve constituencies other than the voters who elected you.

We are not playing around, and we will not forget. We will not become distracted and lose interest. We see this struggle as a monumental fight for the future of the American experiment; it is too important a struggle to lose.

If you want to be on the right side of this fight, the moment to act is now. The "compromise" FISA bill on offer this week has your fingerprints on it. If it passes, we will hold you responsible, regardless of how you actually vote on it. Don't think this will "blow over," because it won't.

Dyon Stefanon
Silver Spring, MD

Why? Why? Why? (4.00 / 3)
We are about to have one of the most important elections in our history. We will have a new president. We can wait, can't we? Why FISA now? For what purpose do we need to compromise and sell out to a Repuglican Law breaking Lie master of a President who's Party holds you and every Democrat in Total Contempt and disdain? Why? Why? Why? What are you afraid of?

They are protecting themselves (0.00 / 0)
The Dem leadership must have been informed about much more than they have said, and feel they need the immunity too since Bush won't pardon them.  See my fuller explanation above.  That's the only explanation that makes sense.

John McCain--He's not who you think he is.

[ Parent ]
I think you're right, Mimi (0.00 / 0)
It's just the Gang of 8 protecting their own asses in this criminal conspiracy to break the law.

The thing is, the truth will eventually prevail. And it will set us free.

[ Parent ]
This may be considered rude, but the feelings are honest. (4.00 / 1)
Rep. Hoyer,

You are a cowardly weasel for pushing the FISA "compromise" bill. You have violated your oath of office and spit on your constituents. You are an embarrassment to your office, the state of Maryland, and to the country as a whole. As a graduate student married to a graduate student, I have given what money and time I could to help elect Democrats. You've convinced me that such effort was a complete waste since the good Democrats in Congress are so easily sold out by their spineless leadership. I will do everything in my power to ensure that you are no longer in a position of leadership in the 112th Congress.  

Why undermine the Democratic nominee for President? (4.00 / 5)
Senator Obama clearly spelled out his opposition to FISA earlier this year, and now he is the Democratic nominee.  Your actions have now put Senator Obama in a position of endorsing the bill and being labelled a flip-flopper, or publicly standing against the bill and being labelled soft-on terror, or standing silent and being labelled a weak-Democrat among his most ardent supporters.  None of these options are good for Senator Obama.  

I am very disappointed in Senator Obama, and my enthusiasm for his candidacy is shaken by his failure to speak-out more forcefully, but I am much more disappointed by you.  This vote did not need to come up until the next administration, and you have intentionally damaged Senator Obama and the prospects of a Democratic presidency.  You obviously don't care and answer to a different oath of office than the one you affirmed publicly, with your hand on the Bible, at the beginning of each of your terms of representation.  Shame on you!

                          -- Sincerely,
                             Curtis Wiberg

John McCain won't insure children

cc: Senator Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid (0.00 / 0)

John McCain won't insure children

[ Parent ]
PS (0.00 / 0)
The callers on C-Span: Republicans, Democrats and Independents have so far unanimously shown their disgust for you and Congress for passing retroactive immunity.

Who do you represent?

John McCain won't insure children

[ Parent ]
Steny, why are you selling out the Constitution? (4.00 / 2)
I donated and volunteered in 2006 to get Democrats elected here in Virginia and I'm disgusted with the so-called "compromise" that will allow the Bush Administration and the telecoms to get away with illegal spying on American citizens.  Spying on American citizens has NOTHING to do with 9/11 - the Bush Administration was illegally spying on us before 9/11.  Steny, this is about government power - why are you giving government and the telecoms the ability to spy on us without a warrant?  The government is so powerful that we need to be protected from government abuses and you are selling out the Constitution and America.  It's sad and it makes me very angry.

In any case, I'll donate to whoever has enough courage to run against you in a primary.

Representative Hoyer, (4.00 / 1)
   I am severely disappointed by this FISA "compromise" bill which sets a terrible precedent.  I was one of Congressman Sestak's first donors in 2006.  I have donated to several Democratic congressional candidates this cycle.  I have liked many of the bills which have passed through the House since the Democrats took control.  I was beginning to think that it might be safe to donate to the DCCC.  I was sorely mistaken.  I will not be donating to the DCCC or DSCC this cycle if this bill passes, and I will donate any money or time to any candidate who supports this bill.  I did not donate money to see the conservative Republican majority maintain its dominance in DC.

John McCain lets lobbyists shape his economic policy

We are a nation of laws (4.00 / 2)
If the proposed "bipartisan" "compromise" FISA legislation unveiled by the House of Representatives and scheduled for a vote in the House on Friday is passed the terrorists will truly have won. The fourth amendment of our Constitution will have been eliminated and corporate wrong doers in the telecom industry will be given retroactive amnesty.

The signers of our Declaration of Independence would be spinning in their graves if they were aware how our "leaders" have perverted the heart of our country - our system of justice - using the evil politics of greed and fear to effectively destroy our tripartite form of government.

Dear Steny: (4.00 / 3)
I realize that within the cushy confines of the House chamber it seems that you can shit on the Democratic base with impunity, that when one of your aides advises you that "the netroots will go nuts," you can shrug it off in a second because you have a safe seat and this is a "niche issue" and you already think the netroots are nuts, so you can crap on the constitution and Democratic activists in one fell crap without even a twinge of trepidation, because you think we can't touch you, you think the progressive movement is too marginalized to touch you and as recently as a year ago you would've been right, but the Times are a Changin', you just don't know it yet, corporate-coddled insiders like you are always the last to know, so enjoy your lunch at the Palm while you can, difficult days await you.


How do you say it in English? (0.00 / 0)
oh yeah, Fuck You!

I donated at least $600 to Democrats this year. I also run a progressive website in NYC, which frequently asks people to get involved in either taking action on the street, for campaigns, or donating to support someone. I also various candidate events. I'm way more active than your average American.

As Democrats gain more of a pad in congress this year, getting people to support an "anti-incumbent vote" will get easier and easier. Vote for anyone but the loser currently selling you out. Hope your ears are burning Steny.

As ek hornbeck wrote above: The reason Democrats are correctly perceived as weak is that they cave EVERY.  SINGLE.  TIME.  

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

You Shame the Democratic Party and Dishonor the Constitution (4.00 / 3)
I am a lifelong Democrat, the child and grandchild of union workers, and a Democratic Party PCO, and I am ashamed of you and the leadership of my party in Congress.

You SWORE to uphold the Constitution of the United States.  With this travesty of a bill you eviscerate some of its most vital and meaningful provisions.

You have capitulated to the raving desires of a war criminal president for more power in direct contravention of our laws and the desires of the American people.

You reveal yourself in this action to be unfit for the office you occupy.

FISA bill (4.00 / 3)
I truly do not understand why the Democratic leadership has agreed to this capitulation to the Republicans and telecom companies.  With the rules in the house, it would have been so easy to delay this until we had a larger majority in the Senate, and a Democratic president.  The explanations from the House leadership have been so transparently insincere and inaccurate that something else must be driving their behavior.  Lobbying money? Guilt over an earlier deal with Bush?  As a volunteer for Eric Massa in 2006, I don't see why I should volunteer again to try to increase their majority if the House Democratic leadership is going to throw away my privacy rights.  

FISA (4.00 / 2)
Congressman Hoyer.  The 4th amendment to the Constitution is a vital protection from government abuse of its citizens.  Please withdraw your support of this bill.  I see no reason for its passage.  The FISA law as originally passed in 1978 can accomplish whatever law enforcement wants.  The new bill allows the telecoms to say that they can follow what the president wants just because he asks, even though the president had no authority and is abusing the 4th amendment.

Unanswered questions (4.00 / 1)
What really smells funny is that there was active, ongoing legislation to update FISA, and the administration and telecoms still broke the law, despite congress making its wishes clear. Why?

And what happened to Bobby Kennedy's insistence that any retroactive immunity is a legal Pandora's Box?

Also, I'm not naturally conspiracy-minded, but did anyone ever investigate the claims by some that the Bush administration had plans for warrantless wiretapping before 9/11? (I believe it was a number of telecom engineers who made this claim.)

What kind of precedents are we setting? It's like we're ruled by men instead of laws.  

Is this what you think you're doing?! (4.00 / 2)

Because, it's not that invisible!

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

i can haz immunity 2? (4.00 / 1)
i'm in ur bank, robbin ur dollarz.
i can haz immunity?

Conduct your own interview of Sarah Palin!

[ Parent ]
Please (0.00 / 0)
Please don't do this, Congressman. If a business treats a president like a king, then both must be held accountable.

Heartbroken doesn't even begin to cover it (4.00 / 10)
When a single mother on welfare works under the table to earn a little extra money, the government will throw the book at her.

Elderly couples facing large medical expenses sometimes can't get government assistance without losing their homes, some have chosen to divorce so that they didn't have to make the choice between homelessness and untreated illness.

In states with 'three strikes' laws, a small time criminal who's never been more than a minor nuisance can get put away for life if they get caught shoplifting.

We're a law and order country. Dang skippy.

But if you're the most powerful man in the world, you don't even have to follow the Constitution. If you're one of our wealthy corporate citizens and help him break our most important laws, the ones that keep us from living in a police state, those laws can be rewritten on your behalf so that you don't even have to argue your case before a judge.

This is an outrage to justice. A country where the poor and the weak are forced to comply with the smallest turn of statute, and the powerful can have the rules themselves forced to comply with their whims.

You're making this a government of men, and not laws, Mr. Hoyer. You're a disgrace to your oath, to this country and to the principles of equality under the law on which it was founded.

I've donated to Democrats every election cycle since 2004, from legislative district candidates to federal candidates. I've donated in primary elections and in general elections. There have been times when what I gave to Democratic candidates went on a credit card that I wasn't sure I could pay off any time soon. I gave to candidates that I didn't entirely agree with because I believed that if we could just get a Democratic majority, I could trust the leadership of the party to make sure that monstrosities like this FISA bill never came to the floor for those people to vote on.

You have entirely broken my trust. I'm never giving a single dime again to any Democrat whose positions I can't vouch for. The DNC, DCCC aren't getting my money, because they'll just give it to people like you.

And I'm telling all my friends.

It truly is (4.00 / 1)
this was glenn greewald's point the other day, and its really such a crime against the people. every day citizens go to jail for years for bull shit petty crimes. people get sent up in entrapment programs. I got a ticket for riding my bike on the sidewalk 20 feet as a I went to park it. we get slapped around with petty bs. meanwhile the fed gives multibillion dollar gifts to JPMorgan et al, and our own congress people vote to give the biggest corporations a free pass on everything from violating the bill of rights to trashing our rivers. i'm well past angry.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
Well, It's Your Own Damn Fault For Not Being A Billionaire (0.00 / 0)
Riding a bike! Sheesh!

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
tell me about it (0.00 / 0)

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
I Was Especially Thinking About The Drug Laws (4.00 / 2)
I thought about this last night, so I was very happy to see you mention this.  The example that popped into my head was the large number of people sentenced under laws with no discretion who are charged as major traffickers, when they clearly are not--particularly, so-called "mules".

Indeed, the major traffickers employ such low-level people to act as mules, and do other high-risk tasks precisely because they know what the penalties are, and can easily afford to avoid the activities that are heavily penalized.  So the entire system is a joke--a very, very, very sick joke.

But the people being incarcerated as a result--often actually only users--are amongst the most powerless in our nation.  And so the thought of changing this clearly counterproductive system is not just off the table, it's not even in the house, much less the kitchen.

The Telcos, however, have nothing but power (they certainly don't have competence, as any comparison of US vs. foreign broadband capacity quickly shows).  And so the law is changed for them, despite the damage done to the Constitution, the rule of law, and the so-called "war on terror."

"Craven imbeciles" does not begin to cover what the Congressional Democrats as a whole have become.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
I'm thinking (4.00 / 1)
what I'll do with all subsequent DCCC/Dem party money letters: send it back with a little note: 105 reasons why you'll never get another nickel out of us.

And include every name of the 105 Demofascists, with their Yes vote, each on its own scrap of paper.

[ Parent ]
Where is that list anyway? (0.00 / 0)

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
I'm very disappointed (4.00 / 3)
Most things people can agree to disagree on, but upholding one's oath is not one of those items.

On twitter: @BobBrigham

Loss for words (4.00 / 2)
For the first time this year, the DNC request letter for contributions delivered to me this week; will go unanswered.

I hope all those that voted yes on this measure got their cut of the $17 million spent on lobbying by the telecos, since I will now donate only to those that voted no today.

Shall I cross out the 4th amendment in my pocket Constitution; today it has become invaild.

Congressman Hoyer (4.00 / 3)
Congressman Hoyer,

This "compromise" is bad policy and bad politics. But worse than that, it is a betrayal of those of us who worked hard to elect the Democrats in 2006 (I volunteered with America Votes, Ohio to elect Sherrod Brown) and it betrays the constitution that you are sworn to uphold.

I know I am not a constituent, but I hope you understand that I will donate money to any primary opponent you face, and I and thousands of others of Americans will work day and night to prevent you from ever becoming Speaker of the House.

I hope that you'll reconsider this bill. We need to hold those who broke the law responsible, and we need to protect every American from government spying.

Thank you

I support John McCain because children are too healthy anyway.

Why? (4.00 / 2)
The most profoundly disturbing part of your actions, Mr. Hoyer, is what possible motive you have for doing this.  Why?  The money from lobbyists?  The fear that Republicans will say bad things about you if you don't do this?  A misguided belief that this is actually necessary?  Does Cheney have photos of you in compromising positions?  

Because none of it makes sense.  Not to me and not to any lawyer or anyone else who believes in the rule of law for the USA.  It simply appears corrupt, craven, misguided, and politically suicidal.

The age of J. Edgar Hoover and Richard Nixon, but with less accountability.  That's what the US is becoming under your watch.  It's as outrageous as it is unbelievable.  I'm ashamed of you.

Michael Piacsek

Here's a Carrot (4.00 / 2)
to go with the sticks people are waving.

If your motivation to cover up wrongdoing by Bush and the telcos is the fear that your own complicity in their wrongdoing will be exposed if you don't, please realize that we are, most of us, capable of forgiveness.

You may have helped this lawbreaking happen over the last seven years, and if so, you should be ashamed of yourself. Still, if Congress can pull back from the brink, please understand that we can make allowances for the difficult political and media environment of the time immediately after 9/11 and forgive what you've already done.

Why? Because any damage you and they have done can still be reversed--until this bill granting immunity is passed. When that happens, you will have crossed the Rubicon.

This, right, here, is the point of no return.

Time to call a halt (4.00 / 2)
Escalating Bush administration abuses of our Constitution's historic tenets by means of this bill reflects badly on all Democrats who supported the compromise. I've volunteered weekly in my congressional district, and I'm dismayed and disgusted by the inabilty of Democrats to be more forthright in facing down those who do harm to our laws and our worldwide reputation.

Anyone Voting for Retroactive Immunity (4.00 / 1)
After the House votes on the FISA Bill this afternoon, I am printing off a list of Democrats who support retroactive immunity. I will be working hard to ensure that those Democrats receive strong primary challenges in every election cycle until they are defeated.  

well, since no violence is allowed... (0.00 / 0)
I'll have to leave a lot of what i'd like to say off this comment.

I would like to tell Steny Hoyer that he is a disgrace to the House, that he has no respect for his constituents or Americans' intelligence, that he is without morals, that he's obviously corrupt, and that instead of donating money to Barack Obama or any other Democrats for that matter, I am now going to donate exclusively to actblue's FISA campaign.

furthermore, effective immediately, I am re-registering as an independent.  I will be donating money to ANYONE running against Steny Hoyer, whether that person is a Democrat, a Republican, a Green, a Communist, or even a member of NAMBLA. But no more money for incumbents, and no money for anyone who supported this bill.

I want him to know that he is dead to me now, and that I will do everything in my power to embarrass him and expose him for the fool he is (I have already done so before).

If this passes, then I am done. (4.00 / 3)
I am done giving money to any Democratic Fund Raising.

I am done volunteering my time for Democrats.

I am done voting for Democrats.

I did all the above because I wanted change and if this passes all I got was "Meet the new boss same as the old boss"

So if this passes I am just done.

Steven Lewis

Cable, phone, etc. (4.00 / 2)
Look.  I gave money in 2004, 2006, and 2008.  At this point, I won't give to the national party any more because of stuff like this but will limit it to individual House candidates with a backbone.

Mr. Hoyer, the present FISA law goes too far.  The government can get warrants from a secret court after the fact.  That's not the way I read my Constitution, Mr, Hoyer.  We need to be restricting FISA not letting this administration have a blank check with our rights on your watch.  

We had plenty of intelligence before 9/11 but neither the brains nor the skill to use it properly.  More intelligence and blank checks for the telecoms and cable companies of the world aren't what is needed.  In case you haven't figured it out, ordinary people are even less happy with these malefactors of great wealth than they are with big oil.  If that phrase sounds a little old fashioned, Mr. Hoyer, it should.  It's from Teddy Roosevelt and is more than 100 years old.  Hardly revolutionary.

Bush has a terrible approval rating.  We have gone without this monstrousity with no harm.  Let it die.  Bad bills are not preferrable to no bills at all, Mr. Hoyer.

David Kowalski

My take... (4.00 / 2)
I'm a Virginia resident, a teacher and graduate student, who worked as a volunteer for Tim Kaine's gubernatorial campaign in 2005, phonebanked for the Democratic Party in 2004, 2006, and 2007 (Virginia has odd-year state elections), and donated to 32 Democratic congressional candidates in 2006.

Other comments in this diary will testify as to how the FISA bill undermines the Constitution and harms our country.  I endorse each and every one of these comments, even the ones which use coarser language than I would have chosen.  

I'll add to their comments another document that the FISA bill undermines:  the 2004 Democratic Party Platform.  That platform, the document that articulates our collective and unified vision as Democrats states:

We must always remember that terrorists do not just target our lives; they target our way of life. And so we must be on constant guard not to sacrifice the freedom we are fighting to protect. We will strengthen some provisions of the Patriot Act, like the restrictions on money laundering. And we will change the portions of the Patriot Act that threaten individual rights, such as the library provisions, while still allowing government to take all needed steps to fight terror.

Your position as House Majority Leader makes you a representative of our party.  Certainly the Platform doesn't supplant the Constitution; but its words demonstrate that members of our party have already voiced and ratified their commitment to protecting our individual freedoms from the encroachment of hyper-partisan powermongers in the opposition party.  You have a responsibility to honor that commitment.

Rage, sorrow, confusion... (4.00 / 2)
To Mr. Hoyer and his colleagues in the Congress:

I am a life-long Democrat -- have been voting for and donating money to and working on behalf of Democrats since before I could vote for McGovern in 1972.

I am now reduced to trying to justify your actions with an argument that while you may be craven and corrupt and weak enough to be enabling this, Democrats at least wouldn't ever initiate this kind of destruction of our Constitution and this sort of betrayal of their obligation to protect the citizens of this country.  I'm having a hard time saying it, and an even harder time selling it.  

The actions of Democrats in the Congress and the Senate in the last few years have broken my heart.  I expect not to agree with everything that you do -- I am not completely naive about the compromises that politics demand.  But habeas corpus, torture, the rule of law, the role of the courts?  Watching you spinelessly abet those who don't really believe in the underpinnings of our democracy, who are so eager to sell out the fundamentals of what makes us the United States of America -- it's a little more than I'm able to comprehend or prepared to bear.

Rep Hoyer: We want change and you are not it. (4.00 / 1)
Dear Rep. Steny Hoyer:

Promoting the telecom immunity bill was an election-losing strategy for Democrats who voted for it. When Democrats start losing their primaries next time, like Joe Lieberman did, they will blame you, not the Republicans. When you are challenged in your next primary, remember this moment. Check out the Blue America PAC vs. Retroactive Immunity. We've raised $250,000 so far.  http://www.actblue.com/page/fisa

"All the money raised on this page will go to fund accountability for congressmembers supporting retroactive immunity and warrantless wiretaps."

Rep. Hoyer, You should have listened to the people instead of the telecom executives who just bought a pardon from House Democrats: In the first quarter of 2008, Verizon spent $4.8 million on lobbyist fees, while Comcast spent $2.6 million, and AT&T spent $5.2 million. Here's more from the fund rasing page that is targeting your next primary after today's vote:

"After Dick Gephart betrayed the majority of House Democrats and plotted with Bush, Cheney and some Blue Dogs to thwart the will of the majority and rubber stamp Bush's decision to attack and occupy Iraq, he was forced out of his role as Democratic Leader. Steny Hoyer deserves the exact same fate."

Tageting Steny Hoyer:
Rep Hoyer: We want change and you are not it.

With friends like these..... (0.00 / 0)
After working so hard to get Democrats elected in 2006 this is what we get!.  The people are watching, and my hard earned money will be donated to every primary challenger who stands up to those representatives who decided to ignore the constitution today.  It is not even about electing more Democrats now...it is about electing better Democrats.
Disgusting.  You should be ashamed.

I was just saying to my sister (0.00 / 0)
all the truths that we all know here.  I desperately wish I lived even within 4 or so hours driving range of D.C. so I could take my two baby boys to the steps of the capital to protest the many, many ways in which OUR elected government is refusing to heed the will of the people, on so many fronts it's breath-taking.  I couldn't even think of what sign I could carry in protest to encompass all my disbelief, grief, horror and anger other than:

Betrayal (4.00 / 1)
Nancy Pelosi voted yea. She just lost my support for her position as speaker. I liked Nancy Pelosi. I really did. I want to support her because I think she is doing a good job overall. But I cannot support her after this. I have never been so angry at the Democratic leadership. They have betrayed us.  

Get out of Congress (0.00 / 0)
I have given thousands of dollars and tens of thousands of hours in recent years to Democratic campaigns.  I am committed to putting some of my time and money into an effort to oust Steny Hoyer from Congress at the next practical opportunity (that is, when we can recruit a candidate to run against him who supports the rule of law, something Steny Hoyer clearly opposes).

Hoyer needs to be ousted! (0.00 / 0)
I now view Steny Hoyer, and Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid to a little bit lesser extent, as even bigger problems than the Republican congress. This is because they aim to fool so many democrats into believing that they are actually committed to ending the lawless imperial regime, but it is now beyond reproach that they are not.

I promise to work as hard as I possibly can to ensure that everyone knows what our democratic "leaders" have done and that they are held to account. Today, I no longer consider myself a democrat---I merely am an activist who recognizes that it is more easy to reform the democratic party by removing these craven shills than it would be to start a 3rd party or reform the Republicans.

Beyond Iraq: A Time to Break Silence

it's simple really (0.00 / 0)
What I would like to ask is how many laws does this administration need to break before Congress begins to hold it accountable?  

That the Democratic-led Congress has not had the courage to assume its role as a co-equal branch of government is one of the most shameful aspects of this shameful period in U.S. history.  

You Failed Miserably (4.00 / 2)
Dear Rep. Hoyer,

It's not your job to protect AT&T.  It's not your job to protect the most unpopular president in recent history.  Your job is to uphold the Constitution.  Your job is to protect the civil liberties of the American people.  You failed us today for what I can only assume are the most cowardly of reasons.  

When it comes time for you and your enabling colleagues to run for re-election, we will not forgot how you abandoned us and the democratic principles you were supposed to defend.

On the FISA capitulation ... (4.00 / 2)

You had to run through this vote with one hour to discuss, and was it less than 24 hours to read?
It was a totalitarian tactic for a totalitarian bill.  I thought Congressmen had to take an oath to uphold the Constitution, and today you have accomplished an end run around the people of the USA in order to interfere with the legal process and expand the role of surveillance --as it is done in a totalitarian country.
But I cannot understand WHY you brought it up again, after your success in preventing this from happening earlier.
It was the one success that I know of that the Congress had this year.  And you apparently are responsible from initiating this rewrite into a major and massive defeat for democracy in America.
We are not stupid.  We see the disconnect between those who still think that they are in power in Washington, and the 80 percent of us who are out here.  You have become some kind of oligarchy without the slightest notion of what democracy means.
We are dedicated today to work for your defeat, and the defeat of each of those who today voted away the protection of law in our country and the structure of our Constitution.
When they say "enemies foreign and domestic" we see today that the "domestic" enemies of our form of government, in voting away our Constitutional rights, must stand down from office.  We ask for your resignation.  But we will certainly work for your defeat.

techies are pissed in Silicon Valley (4.00 / 2)
The techies are pissed that this FISA bill passed, giving Bush a huge win and firmly establishing the imperial presidency into law.

After the details appeared in Wired about the locked room in a downtown San Francisco data center - our backyard - many people that usually don't pay attention to politics started following this story.  And, unfortunately, the story doesn't end well for the Democratic brand name, thanks to your work.  You're giving voters one more reason to say there's no difference between Republicans and Democrats.

I hope the dozens of telco lobbyists hired by AT&T promised you something really good, because the $250,000 raised to run ads against you is just the start.  If you hadn't noticed, the grassroots doesn't forget.  Just ask former Democratic VP candidate Lieberman how well his former leadership position shielded him from Lamont's primary effort.

end the occupation of Iraq

Ben Franklin said.... (4.00 / 1)
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join MoveOn.org and fight for progressive change.  

Hey (0.00 / 0)
Off topic, but I tried to send you an email about my Responsible Plan diary from last week, and it didn't go through. What's your email address?

I support John McCain because children are too healthy anyway.

[ Parent ]
It's extremely disappointing (0.00 / 0)
that the democratic party leadership would cave on this issue at this time when the party has all the momentum in the world.  I don't understand it.  

Steny, you are a terrible failure (0.00 / 0)
This country was founded on the idea of freedom from an oppressive and intrusive government. Today your capitulation to the worst President in our history has compromised those freedoms. This is a shameful act and we will never forget it. You'd better hope that the Senate kills this horrible bill.

Does it make you feel good that President Bush and his lackeys in Congress are patting themselves on the back right now? Or that the telecom companies that broke the law are popping champagne? Since when does Congress provide immunity to lawbreakers?

Today I am totally disgusted by the House leadership. Pelosi, Hoyer, the entire corrupt bunch need to resign their leadership. Let some real Democrats with backbone and clean hands take over. Robert Wexler for Speaker.

Here's the traitor list (4.00 / 1)
The traitors:

Roll Call 437.

Lowlights: Nancy Boyda voted for after coming out strongly against in the media.  New Congressman Cazayoux voted for.  Rahm Emanuel sold us up the river again, along with Missy Bean.  Patrick Murphy has lost my respect, so did Jerry McNerney, Luis Guitierrez (that one hurts, I used to love my former congressman), Joe Sestak, John Yarmuth, amongst others.  And the Colorado Udall shall not be seeing on red cent from me.

The few highlights:  new Congressmen Foster, Tsongas, Edwards, and Carson voted against.  Foster can't be a total Bush dog.  Carol Shea Porter makes me proud.  Jan Schakowsky did us a solid, Jesse Jackson, TIMOTHY FREAKING JOHNSON is the only Republican to vote no??!?!?!.  My new Congressman (Danny Davis) voted no.  

Create a graphic (0.00 / 0)
Think of a big grave stone..... on it would say
The design would look like the old scrolled document....

"The 4th Amendment"

You can tell Hoyer that I am going to spend the next month looking for another country to live in since the last nail was put in the casket of what was known as the United States of America.

AND will spend every penny I have in 2010 in support of a primary challenge.  

When is your retirement party? (4.00 / 2)

"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."

Unbelievable! (4.00 / 1)
Sir you have done great damage to the Constitution.  The founders were explicit.  You seemed to have found a loop hole that doesn't exist and was not included.  You violated the rationale used by the founders.  What were you thinking?????

I've worked hard, and donated $$$ I don't have, to get Dems in office. Why? (4.00 / 2)
Why are you selling us, and the American people, down the river?  I don't understand why you are caving, yet again, to these criminals.  It's like you don't even care.

Rochester Turning - turning the tide upstate

I am disgusted by your total lack of regard (4.00 / 1)
for the Constitution and for justice.  You might as well put a sign on your back that says:  Democrats think justice is for suckers and poor black males. Your total lack of regard for the constitution and the people of this country demonstrates how badly you need to be primaried out of office.  You are no Democrat, and I would gladly fund your primary opponent.  

Disgusting and shameful (0.00 / 0)
The only question left to ask is, what are you trying to hide? I have never been more embarrassed. Hoyer should be removed from his position

I have supported the DCCC (4.00 / 3)
this cycle twice already (I think; I have to check my records).  I have a pledge notice right now for $50 that I agreed to donate last month that I'm not sending back.  I would send it back with a strongly worded note except that it would cost me a stamp to do so.  The House leadership doesn't even deserve a stamp from me at this point.  And I hope you keep sending my pledge notices, because it costs the DCCC money.

When you took impeachment off the table, I went along.  When you kept signing blank checks for the war, I went along. When you tried to pass SCHIP one pathetic time, I went along.  I'm not going along anymore.  

Every month I donate $100 to campaigns, from individual candidates to legislative caucuses.  The DCCC is not getting a dime from me for the foreseeable future.

As a matter of fact, I was going to donate at least $50 a month to legislative candidates and the DCCC for the rest of the year.  Not anymore.  Now I'm going to take what I was going to donate this year and next year to the DCCC and it's candidates and make monthly deposits in my money market account.  When 2010 rolls around I'm going to use the money that I was going to give to Democratic legislators and candidates to primary challengers against Democrats that voted for this bill, and only primary challengers.  Those will be the only candidates I will be supporting in 2010.

You had one responsibility coming out of the 2006 elections: hold the line on the worst Bush administration abuses and law breaking until we elected a new president.  You couldn't even do that, and obviously didn't want to.  Pathetic.  As an American that actually cares about America I'm ashamed of Pelosi, Hoyer, Rockefeller and any other Democrat colluding with the administration to cover up their crimes.  

I would ask for my donations back but since you're not even capable of upholding the basic qualifications of your office I have little faith that any request on my behalf about the money that I entrusted to you would be heeded.

Jordan Everhart
Saint Paul, MN

Glad to see you standing up for your principles (0.00 / 0)
Unfortunately, they're not the principles of the Democratic Party I grew up supporting, nor will I support what you have helped make the Democratic Party be today.

Violation of oath of office (4.00 / 1)
I agree that today's action is a violation of the oath of office of every so-called "representative" that voted for the FISA bill.   In response, I have resolved to take the following actions:

1.  I sent $50 to the Strange Bedfellows website today to help fund advertisements in Mr. Hoyer's district protesting this sell-out.

2.   I refuse to send any money to the DSCC and will only help fund individual candidates who will have the backbone to represent the people and defend their rights.

3.   Among the candidates I will be looking for will be primary opponents to challenge Mr. Hoyer and other representatives who pushed for and voted for this disgraceful bill and attempt to remove them from office.

4.  I will urge my own Congressman (who had the courage to vote against this bill even though he is in a Republican leaning district) to vote against both Mr. Hoyer and Ms. Pelosi in the next election for leadership positions in the House (in the event we are not successful in ousting them from office entirely).

Hoyer - making our country weak (4.00 / 2)
That's what this bill does. The strength of this country comes from our laws and our Constitution. Democrats who fight to uphold the rule of law, reinforce the Constitution and ensure justice for all are strong protectors of freedom. Democrats and Republicans who undermine rule of law, circumvent the Constitution and subvert the judicial system are weak.

We were told many years ago that the terrorists "hate us for our freedoms". Well, for all the killing and bombing and bloodshed, Osama Bin Laden and all of his lieutenants can't take away our freedoms and can't rewrite our Constitution. President Bush has done it, but only because he had help from Steny Hoyer and a handful of Democratic lawmakers.

Thanks a lot!

PS I've been a donor since the 2004 cycle and volunteered for Ned Lamont in CT in 2006.  

"I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that."
-Lawrence Summers

What I sent to Steny Hoyer (4.00 / 1)
Dear Mr. Hoyer,

Would you in fact be willing to change your FISA position if we pay you as much as the telecoms?


That's the rumor. If it's true, I think we can make it happen. Daily KOS gets nearly a million hits per day and is responsible for millions of dollars of internet contributions. The $100K you got from the telecoms is a drop in the bucket for us, and you wouldn't even have to give the $100K back (it would look kind of illegal if you did).

Actually, if you want to do it outside of the area of bribery (I know that's your usual MO), why not just oppose telecom immunity up-front, because it's the right thing to do, become a hero, and then watch the genuine, LEGAL donations come rolling in?

Sometimes you can make more money by doing your constitutional duty than by selling out to the corporations that are ruining democracy and the American way of life.

p.s. In case you're living in a bubble, there's a massive landslide coming and you can either join it or be thrown out along with the rest of the crooked DINO-saurs. And if you don't think Maryland is blue enough to do just that, you're really in the bubble my friend.

I am furious. (0.00 / 0)
There was no reason to capitulate on this bill.  Immunity for lawbreakers only encourages the same in the future.  At this point, I will strongly consider donating to any primary challenger for Hoyer in the future.

Not only is this bill bad policy, it is bad politics.  By passing this bill, Hoyer is hanging Dems who stood up against it like Nancy Boyda out to dry.  Hoyer will claim that he had no choice but to bring this bill up, but I know better.

I am furious and this is unforgivable.

We PTDB! Now, let's pass Grayson's Public Option Act!

You've lost the swing voters (0.00 / 0)
Good luck building a lasting Congressional majority for the future.  The Democrats have now shown that they deserve the scorn they routinely receive from Republicans.  What swing voter would vote Democratic with pride?  Is it any wonder that the media has open contempt for you and your colleagues?

I know you're going to have a rough time in the next few years, struggling with the mess that Bush has made of things, while the media and the RW noise machine excoriates you constantly.  I shall be watching with sad detachment from the sidelines.  You won't be getting any money or help from me, not after today.

Remember, though.  When the Democratic party has its own Abramoff-like scandals, which I am now certain it will, your treatment by the media will be far worse than anything the Republicans received.  After all, you are starting from the position where the media believes that you are sniveling wimps, and it's going to be downhill from there.

How is Tom Delay doing these days, anyway?

I would call today's events utter spinelessness (4.00 / 1)
but that would be unfair to utter spinelessness.

Shame on Leonard Boswell.

Shame on those who voted for him in the June 3 primary.

Shame on you, Steny Hoyer.

Bless Dave Loebsack and Bruce Braley, Iowa's true Representatives, upholding their oath.

No Democrat who votes for Telecomm Imunity should be Re-Elected (0.00 / 0)
How about starting a Liberal/Progressive BLOG PAC with the specific purpose of preventing any Democrat who votes for a bill as bad as this one from ever being re-elected to any office above Dog Catcher.  

I with you, but strike the exception for Dog Catcher (0.00 / 0)
Dogs are sentient beings, too! And so, they deserve ethical treatment. :-)

435 Dem Primaries 2012
Coffee Party Usa

[ Parent ]
Get a Spine (0.00 / 0)
Or, as Wes Clark used to say about Congress: "Get Starch."

Title I is as appalling as Title II, and its effects will be longer lasting.  Even if you thought that you had to have a law before August, THIS is the best you could do--more than the White House even hoped for?  

I've got nothing to say to Hoyer, but...... (0.00 / 0)
Your question prompted me to re-write an idea I had previously posted on the Randi Rhodes forum for a modern, formal ostracism process. I have posted this in a dailykos diary here:


The FISA capitulation vote reminds us, once again, of how out of step Congress is with the voting public, it's putative boss. Ancient Athens practiced a formal ostracism in conducting its democracy, determined by the voting public, to banish citizens for 10 years.  While the practice of Athenian ostracism was uneven (and sometimes silly and unethical), it also is credited with helping Athens survive. I call for a formal ostracism, by registered Democrats and Republicans of Democrat and Republican members of Congress, respectively. The penalty would not be banishment, but rather informing of the office holders' constituents of their dubious representative's status. With any luck, enough ostracisms would ensure that incumbents stand no chance of re-election.

Voters need to be able to not only show their displeasure, but to be able to do so in a way that affects other voters, and helps drive out incumbents who don't care about the Constitution, or otherwise displease their constituents.

435 Dem Primaries 2012
Coffee Party Usa

Dear Mr. Hoyer, (0.00 / 0)
Our founding fathers are dismayed and rolling over in their graves. Shame, Mr. Hoyer, shame!


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