HILLARY SUPPORTER FOR ATTACKING HILLARY. Don't get me wrong. I'm glad Russert was sniffing out the wedge issues and I'm all for the attacks on Hillary by Obama and Edwards. Face it, Hillary needs the work. She needs to be able to respond to attacks in ways that defend her position, segue back to her main campaign themes, and take some shots at Rudy Giuliani. Last night, she didn't get those things done in the Philadelphia debate. She needs to get better before facing off with the Republican nominee and the only way she's going to get better is if she's forced to respond to attacks from her opponent. I support Hillary's candidacy, but it would help her campaign enormously if she was attacked more often and more forcefully by her opponents.
THE DEMS STILL DON'T GET IT WITH MUKASEY. There are times when one has to think that the Democratic leadership is not that sharp. The Democrats think the question over whether Mukasey is going to acknowledge that waterboarding is torture is primarily a question of enforcing the law. Is Mukasey going to enforce the law or is he going to accept all of the Bush administration's vacuous reasoning for avoiding the law. But there are other questions for the Bush administration, especially the question of legal jeopardy. If Mukasey acknowledges the criminality of waterboarding, everybody involved in the Bush administration's "enhanced interrogation techniques" from 9-12 2001 onward is vulnerable to prosecution. That includes the interrogators, their supervisors, anybody who consulted with them, and policy-makers all the way up the line and George Bush, Dick Cheney, and Alberto Gonzales in particular. Mukasey seems to recognize the issue.
MICHAEL MUKASEY, U.S. Attorney General-Designate: ... I'm sorry, I can't discuss, and I think it would be irresponsible of me to discuss particular techniques with which I am not familiar, when there are people who are using coercive techniques and who are being authorized to use coercive techniques, and for me to say something that is going to put their careers or freedom at risk simply because I want to be congenial. I don't think it would be responsible of me to do that.
But it seems that the Democrats don't see it. What the Dems need to do is "belly up to the bar" and get Mukasey to recognize that being the next Attorney General means investigating the Bush administration and the American military and intelligence apparatus for violations of the whole range of American and international laws forbidding torture. If Mukasey doesn't recognize his responsibility here, he shouldn't be confirmed.