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May 12th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Should Democrats hold hearings into Bush torture memos?

ALT TEXT

Amnesty International activists protest near the U.S. Capitol. They are calling for an independent investigation into alleged human rights abuses by the Bush administration. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Democrats are plowing ahead with hearings into the so-called Bush torture memos - even if the White House isn't on board.

A Senate Judiciary subcommittee will hold a public hearing tomorrow to be followed by House hearings. The committee chair says it will focus on legal issues such as the conduct of Justice Department lawyers who wrote or approved memos justifying harsh techniques like waterboarding. This is separate from the investigation being done by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The White House isn't commenting on tomorrow's hearing, but has previously indicated that the president prefers the investigation already underway in the Senate Intelligence Committee. That inquiry is going on behind closed doors and with classified information; so it's unclear how much of it will ever be made public.

Meanwhile House Speaker Nancy Pelosi continues to change her story about what she knew and when she knew it. Politico reports a Pelosi aide was briefed along with Congresswoman Jane Harman in February 2003 on the specific techniques that had been used on al Qaeda leader Abu Zubaydah - including waterboarding.

At that time, Harman wrote to the CIA expressing her "profound" concerns with the tactic. Pelosi apparently told her aide to tell Harman she agreed with the letter, but she didn't sign it.

Last week, Pelosi said she was briefed only once in 2002; and was only told the Bush administration was considering using certain techniques in the future.

Here’s my question to you: Should Democrats hold hearings into the Bush interrogation memos even if the White House disagrees?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Joe writes:
Many Democratic leaders in Congress will not let this go until it plays out. It's a way for them to wash their hands of this whole affair even though many of them were deeply involved. I'd like to see if these hearings will put Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats who may have had full knowledge on the stand. Get it all out in the open and let the chips fall where they may.

Tony writes:
What a stupid question, Jack. Why? Because your audience consists mostly of liberal Democrats who will say that the Democrats should prosecute Bush and Cheney, string them up and maybe drag their bodies around Washington. You thrive on those answers. You certainly don't look for the truth.

Joan from New York writes:
Jack, Holding the hearings without Obama's approval is politically the smartest way to handle it for everyone. It shows that the Bushies can't get away with torture, and it lets Obama stay free of the mess.

Helen writes:
This must be a joke. No one holds the Bush family accountable for anything. Anybody who served in war and was captured knows what torture is. And for our country to use this type of interrogation makes me sick. My son is on his second tour in Iraq and I dread every day he is away. I would not want this done to him or any service personnel.

John from Chicago writes:
This Congress needs to start looking forward and quit blaming the prior administration for everything. The Democrats have been in control of the Congress since '06 and have not had a major impact at all. And, if there is a hearing, the Democrats who were briefed and had knowledge should also be held accountable, not just the Bush Administration.

Mark from Bradenton, Florida writes:
Absolutely. These gangsters were sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution and to represent the American people. We have a right to know what was going on.


Filed under: Bush Administration • Democrats
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Rae from Indiana

    No, Democrats should not. Congress should. In case they have forgotten we sentenced troops to prison time for this stuff. They weren't pardoned and they were labeled bad apples. They were dishonorably discharged and lost all benefits. Does congress support our troops? Do they think we should abide by agreements to which we are a party? This is what it boils down to. It doesn't matter if one thinks terror SUSPECTS deserve it or not.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  2. lynn

    With Cheney blithering on about how torture saved "hundreds of thousands of lives" . Americans need to know if he is blowing hot air or if he is right. I find it difficult to believe that if they had stopped such an attack saving so many lives he would have made it public by now.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  3. Ayse-London

    I think that their needs to be an independent hearing into the torture debate, in order to ensure objectivity and repsonsibility and politicians from both sides ned to be called to give evidence, and made to be accountable for both their actions and in-actions.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  4. Jack Martin

    Jack
    At the very least hearings should be held. We should never forget that we executed Japanese and German war criminals after WWII for their torture of prisoners. Should we now admit we were wrong back then? Tthey didn't get to run around bragging about it like our exVP Cheney is doing.
    Jack in Boynton Beach FL

    May 12, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  5. Troy Spier

    I think it's ridiculous that we're even contemplating not holding hearings in response to the Bush torture memos. We've been made aware over the last few days about the immoral actions authorized by prior White House officials. Torture is torture, and doesn't simply become more "socially accepted" because of the person or people facilitating it.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  6. Doris/St. Louis

    They should get to the bottom of this crime, and prosecute accordingly(Cheny).

    May 12, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  7. Dan from Alliance, OH

    I don't trust Congress at all. Torture is a crime however who do we punish, the VP, Sect of Defense? I say we should punish no one and clean the slate for anyone who has been punished. Then can the generals for going along with it. They follow orders but should also know the rules of the Genevia Convention and should jnot follow those orders that are not legal.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  8. BRUCE, ST PAUL, MN

    For reasons of accountablilty uner the law, and to deter future shady porcesses, I think they should. But if they do, I'm going to hate it. I'm sure it will be a partisan circus, and a total distraction from all the pressing issues at hand.This should not be a partisan underatking. The justice department should investigate when they think crimes have been committed, even by presidents. Congress should be dedicated to oversight and finding what went wrong, no matter the party in power. But that is not going to happen here. We are stuck with political maneuvering when we need repsonsible government. This is the democracy we are trying to export to the rest of the world.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  9. Diane, Barneveld, NY

    Nothing is going to happen because of it. The public will get informed, but they don't care because they support torture until and unless it is done to Americans. The mentality is "do as I say, not as I do".

    May 12, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  10. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    By all means investigate everyone including any person even remotely connected to the issue out in the light of day and not behind closed doors. Publicly expose ALL those involved. If the investigator suspects an alleged perpetrater is withholding any information or is believed to be attempting to deceive; waterboard them. Imprison the guilty.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  11. Billy the Bookie in Las Vegas

    plain and simple, YES, Jack.

    this whole scandal is ten times worse than ANYTHING Richard Nixon ever pulled and the ONLY thing that kept him from going to prison was Gerald Ford's pardon.

    I really don't think this counrty can truely lead in free world when we were AS guilty as some of histories worst dictatorships during the last administration IF those crimes go unpunished.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  12. Jim McCormack

    Democrats (and Republcans) in Congress are approximately as useful to the citizens of this country as whale bio matter on the ocean floor. In other words, whatever they do won't help or matter to the citizens of this country. Obama is trying to lead this country out of the mess left by Bush, congress just continues to wallow uselessly in it.

    Best regards,
    Jim McCormack

    May 12, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  13. Jayne

    Absolutely. The past 8 years have disgraced this nation like nothing before. We're better than the Bush years, but the only way to prove it is to air the dirty linens and prosecute any criminal offenses. By the way, do you remember the Clinton years and the Whitewater investigation? $40 million on nothing but a partisan vendetta. How about Watergate? Of course, unlike waterboarding, their pranks involved sending unordered pizzas. God only knows the harm a good pie might do. It's ridiculous we don't have a full blown investigation of the Bush/Cheney torture policies by a special prosecutor.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  14. Michael in Albuquerque, NM

    We are required by law to hold hearings and prosecute. We signed the Geneva Convention. Should we ignore the law while Dick Cheney taints the jury pool with every interview he gives to Fox News? This is a serious issue and serious charges. We must take this seriously.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  15. Kelby, In Houston Texas

    We should go further than just holding hearings. Eric Holder should be bringing charges against the Bush Administration for torture. If we don't, than another country might do so

    May 12, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  16. Marie Ontario

    America is at a cross roads and has to decide if it is going to be a nation of laws as well as respecting the International Laws it has agreed to abide by or a rogue Nation without morals or conscience.

    If the U.S. does nothing about what has been done then they will forever be known as an arrogant state with a barbaric culture that considers itself above the law and common decency.

    Obama is a constitutional lawyer and knows full well America is obligated to prosecute those suspected of committing war crimes and not to fulfill this duty makes him and his administration an accessory after the fact.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  17. Ronald Holst

    Jack On a purely on a legal persistent I would have to say YES other wise every crook in the country will try to find a persistent from this to get them selves off from any prosecution at all.If for no other reasons there could and will be clams of Discrimination .
    I mean If our laws are for the average citizen then they have to be for every one in this country legal or illegal. And even if they loos those cases it could cost this nation a fortune in these law suites .
    To think that Bush administration Fought against frivolous lawsuits . Now Could be opening up a door for thousands more of these .This Is not a partisan Issue it Is an American Issue.

    Ron Holst
    San Antonio
    Texas

    May 12, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  18. Alex (CT)

    If we're going as far as to forcefully deport an 89-year-old man for charges related to Nazi death camps then I believe it's only fair that we take every action to bring justice to our own situation; otherwise we're simply being hypocritical.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:14 pm |
  19. Daniel Indiana

    Yes. It shouldn't matter anyone's political leaning when it comes to investigating. Even at that, anyone found complicit will only get a slap on the hand in this country, a country where white-collar crime is approved. It will be foreign countries where these people/criminals will have to concern about going to in order to not be prosecuted and incarcerated for long periods of time. These investigations should include anyone involved, including those that "were follwing orders". People have the ability, like pharmacists and others, to defy orders and not do what they believe to be wrong. That is "personal responsibility".

    May 12, 2009 at 3:14 pm |
  20. Jane in CA

    Yes. Torture is a crime in this country. If you want to give it the OK, then change the law and repudiate the treaties. Otherwise, you investigate when a crime is suspected, and prosecute if there is evidence that the law was broken. If Lyndie England deserves prison time, the people who ordered her actions do also. And the lawyers who advised that the orders were lawful.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  21. Vinnie Vino

    Jack,

    Definitely there should be hearings to investigate this alleged crime against humanity, despite the White House's objection. In the end all the gulity Bushies should have to experiene the same unamerican torture methods...

    Central Islip, NY

    May 12, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  22. Mike Murphy North Port, Florida

    Jack,

    Are these groups also calling for investigations into human rights violations by the Taliban, Iran, Cuba, and Chavez? Didn't think so. Why isn't anyone concerned about US Soldiers being beheaded at the hands of Islamic terrorists? Politics as usual.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  23. Frank

    HiJack,

    Only if Americans want to be seen above third world level ethics.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:16 pm |
  24. Helen

    This must be a joke. No one holds the Bush Family accountable for anything. Anybody who served in war and was captured know what torture is. And for our country to use this type of interrogation tactics makes me sick. My son is on his second tour in Iraq and I dread every day he is away. I would not want this done to him or any service personnel. Maybe we should demonstrate to the TV viewers how waterboarding works and use Bush and his cronies as subjects. If you had to use this type of torture more then once on a person, then it is useless, senseless and assinine to do.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  25. Scott in Canada

    If they can, somehow, plausibly avoid turning it into a partisan scuffle and instead have it as a fact and truth finding hearing (which is certainly not what they're selling), then yes.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  26. Mark, Bradenton, FL

    ABSOLUTELY. These gangster were sworn to uphold the US Constitution and to represent the American people. We have a right to know what was going on. And then Bush and his crwonies should be tortured and then hanged afterwards.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  27. Paul from Parry Sound, Ontario

    They should hold hearings if they think the U. S. is, or should be, a country governed by law. Eternal vigilance, you know.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  28. Scott Dallas, TX

    The US is either a nation of laws, or it is not. If torture is a crime then let it be punished, and let justice be blind. That's not the way it works though is it? Here in the US we have separate but not so equal justice systems for the wealthy and influential on the one hand, and everyone else on the other.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  29. circy in new mexico

    Yes they should, but I won't hold my breath wating for it to happen. Or, if they do they'll whitewash it. The truth is, it could have been prevented from the beginning if Congress didn't act like they worked for another country and all that was someone else's business. I hold them to blame almost as much as the Bush Administration for the way they embarrassed our nation worldwide. Now, we've lost any moral reason to critizise other countries for their behavior.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  30. Anthony......NJ

    This horse is already out of the barn and the country is in no condition to be mired down in endless investigations which might result in the prosecution of a few lapdogs. Let's get on with the country's business and let history be the judge. Disgraced dead presidents can now rest in peace knowing that their incompetence has been one-upped by George W. Bush.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  31. bobwhite, Ks

    Yes, jack! That is why we have a separation of powers.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  32. Ed from Tallahassee Florida

    Yes, Americans should know what is done in their name.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  33. Bob D, Morrisown, NJ

    Yes, the more hearings the better, and prosecution would be better still. The white house position was stated at a time when there was consensus that the United States shouldn't, and no longer tortures, and shall not do so in the future. Now that Cheney is touting what a good thing it was for the US to torture, the proper message needs to be reaffirmed by hearings, prosecution, trials, and sentencing.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:26 pm |
  34. john j. grimes Watertown, Ma.

    Eight years of total disgust for Bush/Cheney & Co. yet I have no concerns for the waterboarding of the chief planner of 9/11, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed along with al-Nashiri who orchestrated the Cole attack in Yemen. I can only say this to all of the bleeding hearts, having a wee bit of "water torture" and sleep deprivation is better than beheading, I.E.D.'s and being blown to pieces in a suicide bombing. If it was up to me I would do it to these two 100 more times.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  35. Carole from California

    Jack, if the Repubs can investigate and impeach a president on what essentially is a private matter, don't you think the Dems can investigate and prosecute an administration on the atrocities our country endured over the past eight years? The Bush Administration continually lied and deceived the American people. They got us into a war that's drained our finances, killed our children, drained our military to the breaking point, and has dragged on far too long, Their "Do as I say, not as I do" policies and feeling they were above the law resulted in human rights violations that are inexcusable. YES...there should be hearings, and YES...they should be held accountable!

    May 12, 2009 at 3:29 pm |
  36. Jerry from Monroe Co. WV

    The legislative branch should carry out it's duties however they see fit.
    Separate but equal branches- high school civics 101.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  37. Lee from La Verne

    Jon Stewart said it best: "Bad jokes and gay marriage are destroying this country, but torture can save it."
    Thank you, Jon, for putting things in such clear perspective!

    May 12, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  38. Ronald Holst

    Jack
    I am not sure The country is ready To see Chaney under oath Fiddling With a couple Of marbles Or ball bearings totally lousing It On the stand.
    Oh Wait A minute I got My Captain's Mix up I meant the other one . you know the one that will tell Nation How We have To hunt down the Great White Whale or aw I mean terrorist .
    Ishmael
    San Antonio
    Texas

    May 12, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  39. Melissa

    If they aren't prosecuted, then why did the US fight the British so hard during the Revolution only to adopt Britains tactics and behavior centuries later? Aren't we better than that? Don't we hold all people accountable for their actions? Its time the US started to live up to its claims of equality and freedom for all.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  40. John in LA

    There've been enough lies the past 8 years. Let's see the truth and know the facts about what has been done. There are no excuses for torture.

    In the process, hopefully we will ALL remember something about this country–that Americans don't believe in torture, and that people are Innocent until proven guilty."

    May 12, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  41. William in Newark NJ

    Jack, this will be a dog and pony show for the benefit of the cameras and the news pundits. While we may not all agree with coerced interrogations better known to the left as "torture", one thing cannot be disputed, we have not been attacked since 9/11. I wonder how many Americans are alive now due to these tactics, I also wonder how the dems would have reacted had we been attacked again.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  42. Kevin, Florida

    Absolutely not. We are the only nation which still has idiots who believe there are actual rules in war. It defeated the British, and later us in Vietnam. After all what do you think Al Queda does to captured soldiers..........sit them down for a "Big Mac" and Pepsi?

    May 12, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  43. Murray Zalta

    Yes,Yes and Yes again. We are supposed to be a nation of laws for both the rich and powerful along for the common person. If we do not follow our own laws for the powerful how can the rest of us respect any of our laws.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  44. Meg from Troy, Ohio

    Jack–
    If Americans want to make sure that this doesn't happen again, then the people responsible for approving torture need to be responsible for their actions and take whatever consequences they have coming. If everything is done behind closed doors, and kept "classified" there will not be any resolution to this torture issues. Let the subpoenas fall where they may–bring on a special prosecutor.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  45. K

    Bush and his adminstration broke the LAW and need to be held accountable unless Washington demonstrates a double standard of justice. This may well include Pelosi. If you break the law you pay the fine!

    May 12, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  46. Jordan Keyes in Mobile Ala.

    Definitely.We should not sweep this under the rug.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  47. Jay in Texas

    They'd better or they will be looking for jobs after their next election.
    Brownwood, Texas

    May 12, 2009 at 3:48 pm |
  48. Ann from Hampton, New Jersey

    Most definitely, unless they have a lot to hide. I am sure Pelosi will knock that idea down. Her job will be on the line. Maybe that would be a good way to make her step down. Maybe that would also quiet Harry Reid.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  49. Lynne in North Augusta, SC

    A law is only as good as the willingness to enforce it. If we don't even investigate alleged torture, how can we be a nation of laws? If we don't investigate we are no different than the nations that turn a blind eye to such horrors. We become the enemy.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
  50. Mark

    No, Democrats should not hold hearings. JUDGES should hold hearings. These are crimes we're talking about; they always have been and always will be, and whether Rep. Pelosi received briefings in which she was told "we've committed crimes (but they're top secret so if you tell anyone you're going to prison)" is a cheap distraction.

    At this point Dick Cheney has made enough unambiguously incriminating statements to the media to convict him. Let the trials begin.

    Mark Stein
    New Britain, CT

    May 12, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
  51. Jack from Palm Coast, FL

    Torture is illegal. If torture was used, regardless of the results, then those involved should be held accountable. Elected officials who rolled over should be included in the investigation. The whole thing stinks and using the "tired" argument that we haven't been attached again is justification for illegal acts is really sad.

    If we are sending 80 year old war criminals back for trials because they should be held accountable means at least we can investigate or turn it over to Spain. Maybe they can do a better job.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  52. Ken from Colorado

    Jack, yes the Congress should go through with investigating the truth despite the drag this may cause on the White House agenda.
    What separates us from third world countries and those that torture is that we, in the past, have set and followed the guidelines for moral and ethical behavior. Of course the real issues here are freedom versus control; that the ends justify the means; truth versus carefully planted hearsay and outright fabrication. Cheney as usual is trying to create a panorama of mayhem regarding his justification for torture. Is he so worried about what may come out that he had to implicate the ex President?
    If any Democrats were involved with the implementation of torture they can go to hell as well. Let the truth, not politics be the final arbiter in this very dark chapter of American history.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  53. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    Some Democrats voted for the war in Iraq and the Patriot Act. Why should we trust them to do the right thing now. It would seem too political anyway and this is not political. This is about committing felonies. There should be an independent investigation with everything declassified and then they should abolish or disband the CIA. They've caused enough damage to the world in the past. Why can't we have just one intelligence agency like England and Israel? It would sure decrease government spending which is what the Republicans favor. I bet alot of Democrats would like that too.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  54. CJ in Atlanta

    Yes! The Republicans pulled Bill Clinton through the ringer and made him face impeachment over a bedroom scandal. These torture allegations are much more serious and therefore Bush needs to be brought to trial.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  55. Geri - Mead, OK

    Personally, I think torture is worse than murdering someone. Unless they plan to indict the culprits who dreamed this idea of torture up, I don't see any reason to have hearings on the subject.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  56. Bob

    High School Civics:

    When there is probable cause to believe someone or group of people have committed a crime, an indictment should be returned in the appropriate jurisdiction and those accussed made to stand trial and pay the appropriate penalty if proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

    There are no exceptions.

    Cheney has already confessed to authorizing torturing which is a viloation of Federal Law. The only question left to be answered is are we a nation governed by law or a nation governed by men.

    Bob
    Louisville, Ky

    May 12, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  57. Anita from Tennessee

    Yes. Torture is illegal and we all need to know the truth and get to the bottom of this horrible situation in our country's past. This is not an issue to push under the carpet and hope that it will go away because it will not. Even if the torture situation doesn't bother our country for the next few years, it will come up again and needs to be addressed now and settled now. Also, it would be good for the media to quit listening to Dick and Liz Cheney and just do good investigative reporting on the issue. If the media isn't planning to investigate, please stop talking about it and giving the Cheneys a platform on which to speak!

    May 12, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  58. dave

    Not just the democrats all law makers if torture is a crime and waterboarding is torture everyone should want to see justice.

    May 12, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  59. Sharon, Rockford, IL

    Absolutely Jack. Just saying we aren't going to do it anymore is not enough. We would support prosecutions in other countries. What makes us exempt. I don't care if it goes all the way to the top. These people must be held accountable. I am appalled every time I hear Dick Cheney speak.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
  60. Joyce - Florida

    Democrats shouldn't; Americans should.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  61. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    “The time is always right to do what is right.”—Martin Luther King, Jr.

    I'm sure George Bush doesn't want Justice delayed. He never let a criminal's insanity, intellectual handicap, or mitigating circumstances delay him from implementing the death penalty in the past. What's different now? We conservatives are tough on crime.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  62. Adam Thousand Oaks, CA

    Let it go already. It will set a terrible prescedent and handcuff future Attorney Generals from taking stands in the gray areas of the law. No one is ever going to agree 100% with everything an Administration does, but they should not be prosecuted for their interpretations of the law. Change the order, but leave the past in the past.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  63. Kirven Dunham

    These people need to go to jail. Let's take inventory:
    1) Lied to get us in a war (so they can make lots of money)
    2) Leaked a CIA agent cover
    3) Gave the orders at Åbu Ghraib (only the soldiers when to jail)
    4) Torture
    5) and several more

    What do they have to do in order to be held accountable. These are far more serious than sexually misconduct. If they were not part of the Bush administration they would already be in jail.

    Also, those soldiers who went to jail over Abu Ghraib need to be set free and the record cleaned up. We now know they were following the orders of cowards.

    Kirven Dunham
    Rancho Cordova, CA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  64. Kevin in Madison, Alabama

    Jack,

    The democrats are on a witch hunt. Presiedent Obama is smart enough to know the american people are not for these types of politically motivated hearings.

    We as a country need to move on!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  65. DON IN WESTPORT, MASS.

    No, just leave it alone. It's too bad we got caught. It may be inhumane but it is a necsersary evil. We cannot be perfect human beings in such a imperfect world. That will be our undoing.
    The average American just don't realize what kind of savagery we have inflicked on others in the past to have the freedoms we have now.
    We do it because we have to. It's called war.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  66. Gigi in Alabama

    Of course he should be held accountable. Have hearings on their abuse of power. After all, Congress held hearings on an adulterous affair of Bill Clinton. He may have lied, but so did George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and their underlings. As they said about Clinton . . . He lied, nobody died! These neocons lied and thousands have died.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  67. Chuck in warren, Ohio

    Jack: Duck tape on Cheney's mouth would be enough!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  68. LUCI - ILLINOIS

    Yes! I would like to know everything that too place during his eight years in the white house. That would be interrogating the prisoners, in with the Saudi's and other oil producing Country's, and all of the Bush/ Cheney secrets. They are not above being found out.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  69. Ken in NC

    No they should not go forward with hearings. With some material being classified they may have to resort to enhanced interrogation techniques to get information from Bush, Cheney and Limbaugh.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  70. Al, Lawrence KS

    No. Hearings will not change the facts. We need a judge and a jury. It will be divisive and it will be ugly, but torture is illegal. What angers me is that Bush and Cheney have put us in this no-win situation.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  71. Will- Charlotte, NC

    Absolutely not. That was the old way of doing business and and we should not be looking for ways to incriminate the past administration. We should simply practice doing things differently from now on. Irregardless to what DICK Chaney said, torture was cruel and will always increase America's security threats. That is something we just should not have to deal with.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  72. Peg from NY

    No. We have many much bigger issues to deal with. That Administration is gone and the damage is done. Let us move forward as a Nation. There is no need to spend one penny on the 8 year mess. In under 100 days President Obama has done a lions' share of good works. Let us all focus on the present and the future.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  73. Greg Mechanicsburg, PA

    Holding hearings will waste time and taxpayer money and serve no more purpose than to puff up some Democrat demagogues and ruffle Republican feathers. These are not just run-of-the-mill high crimes and misdemeanors; these are allegations of crimes against humanity and the fracturing of our Constitution by the President of our Nation. Democrats should not be involved in the process, other than to make certain that no one interferes with a non-partisan investigation conducted by a special prosecutor with oversight of a non-partisan panel of Judges selected by the Supreme Court. How our nation conducts these proceedings will be judged by the entire world. If we cover up or downplay any of the facts or implications, these United States of America will stand for nothing but hypocrisy.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  74. Wisconsin Don

    By all means, do a full blown investigation and name names as to who knew what and when. Then we will find out if the Dems did a Barney Fife and shot themselves in the foot.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  75. Jeff Crocket

    After they clean up their own back yard!

    Jeff in new Britain, Ct

    May 12, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  76. Kristine

    Democrats should hold hearings to find out why suddenly, we are seeing/hearing so much of CHENEY, when he was in that "undisclosed location" for the entire 8 years.
    Bush was just the puppet.......

    May 12, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  77. Bill

    NO

    How are you gonna defend Pelosi on this one Jackie Baby.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  78. Linda in Arizona

    Yes. Laws were broken.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  79. Donna Colorado Springs,Co

    Absolutely yes!!!!!!!!!!!! Bush and his henchmen should not be allowed to get away with what they did by saying that it saved us from more attacks. How do we know that what they were told was the truth anyway? More importantly, I don't believe a word that came out of their mouths for eight years, so why would I believe them now? No matter what the white house says, investigations should proceed. If it were the other way around, you can bet the republicans would be first in line to hang the democrats!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  80. Jill

    Absolutely yes!!! If we don't, we are espousing a double standard (vis a vis our expectations from the rest of the world – except Israel) that can eventually come back and haunt us.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  81. Anna

    Jack if I rob the bank and get my layer to write leagal opinion that
    1. this was not illigal because I had account there
    2. nobody died or suffer mental illness
    3. I needed money to pay my morgage
    do you think that this would make robbing bank leagal.
    We need to have one justice for all.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  82. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Just Democrats? The entire world is owed a prosecution of Bush/Cheney/Blair war crimes. But that's not going to happen because many of the criminals who signed off on the war and torture are still in charge. We are so totally doomed!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  83. Max

    They should, only if ALL the information comes out.

    I want to know what cities were saved by these actions, what Pelosi knew and other things. I cannot be one sided.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  84. JS

    They should, but if they don't, other countries whose citizens have been tortured are ready to hold trials, the world is getting very small for Bush/Cheney. Joan NC

    May 12, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  85. Neil

    Torture is always wrong. Period. There can never be any justification for its use. Ever. People who torture are evil. They would degrade our fundamental values and debase ourselves to satisfy their own hideous appetites. People who employ torture should be apprehended and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, without exception. The only reason the White House would not want a full investigation is because it has something to hide. We need Congress to act, now. To quote John Dean, this is "Worse Than Watergate."

    May 12, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  86. George , New York

    We are signatories to the Geneva Convention. If we do not hold hearing, then some other government will. If I were a betting man, my money would be on Spain. Can't wait to see if the Spanish issue arrest warrants for Bush, Cheney and the rest of that motley crew including Ms. Rice.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  87. Steve

    Why is the question even raised? There is substantial evidence that laws were broken and that they were broken by design and that policy memorandums were written to circumvent those laws. We are either a nation of Laws or we are not!! What difference does it make if it's the Bush administration or Clinton administration. If this country could tolerate the impeachment of a setting US President because he lied about a sex act, then why aren't we willing to find the truth about possible violations of laws governing the use of torture?

    Steve
    Clifton, VA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  88. Jan from Delaware

    Yes, I support a congressional investigation and have written to my senators and congressman saying so. How will we look to the rest of the world if we ignore this?. How hypicritical to send an elderly man back to Germany to face trial for his atrocities and not do anything about the torture Bush, Chaney, Rumsfeld and Rice condoned and ordered !! We MUST be the change we want to see in this world.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  89. John Traver

    Can t;he police now use torture to secure convictions? Yes we need to do everything we can to make it clear that this country does not approve of torture, and does not condone the use of it.

    Maplewood Minnesota

    May 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  90. Peter Maynard

    An independent prosecutor is the only way. Either we are governed by the rule of law or we are hypocrites. Unfortunately, I think I know what we are.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  91. roger dowdle lockhart, tx

    Yes, Bush can beat the charge on grounds of mental incompetence, but Cheney would then be the one to get the blame! Cheney is using the ploy of calling for more memos to be released. Think about it- If you claim there are memos to justify your actions (even if they don't exist) then you can always claim you are being scapegoated because the memos haven't been released!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  92. James, Charlotte, NC

    If we could listen to all of the Monica Lewinsky hearings about the definition of sex. I believe we can have hearings on torture memos.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  93. AARON

    They should do so with dexterity. Its a difficult situation, but if they dont do it, the question will never go away and this may cost them their trust from the American people.
    SAN DIEGO, CA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  94. Chuck McVay

    I say not onlly NO but HELL NO. What is more inhumane watterboarding to get information that can save lives, or Police useing Dogs , who often scare people & even bite them that are not guilty of anything The dog does not know the difference. In my opinion when we use k-9's we have lowered our human standard.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  95. Michael Sullivan from Lafayette, California

    Jack - We The People want and deserve to know who knew what and who did what regarding torture, so, yes, the Dems should and need to hold these hearings and allow the public to witness what's going on -
    after all, Barack, whom I strongly support, needs to back up his campaign
    promise of "more transparency in government".

    May 12, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  96. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Jack,

    We have to respect our democratic institutions otherwise what do they represent in the end.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  97. HD in Phoenix, AZ

    Yea!!! Absolutely. I've been waiting for this since the 2004 election.

    HD in Phoenix, AZ

    May 12, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  98. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Jack,

    We have to respect our democratic institutions otherwise what will they represent in the end.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  99. Steve Batts

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Jack !! We still have soldiers in Military Prison for Abu Ghraib Prison abuse. It was a kangaroo court process, to cover up the torture policy. Until these people are vindicated and restored to duty, with pay grade and all back pay, there can be no end to the bush investigation.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  100. stephen blesofsky

    Yes, but only if they can promise these hearing will not compromise the huge and critical agenda before them. They will have to "work". Can you air this FOUR LETTER WORD?

    Steve Blesofsky
    Sun City Center Fl

    May 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  101. Miriam

    Whether the White House is in agreement or not, the legislative branch of our government should certainly hold hearings to get to the truth in this matter of national shame. The American people deserve something they rarely get from government, The Truth!

    Miriam
    Sacramento, CA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  102. Jim from Chicago

    No, CONGRESS should hold hearings into the Bush Torture Memos. The integrity of America and our laws is not a partisan issue. Then, a special presecutor should be called in to look into who authorized and perpetrated these alledged crimes. Let the chips fall where they may for Democrats or Republicans.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  103. Susan from Twin Falls Idaho

    No, they can’t change what has been done. Why not put all that energy into something that will benefit what our needs are now. What are these people so intent on proving? We know it happened but the odds of the right people paying the price are slim to none.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  104. David in Raleigh, NC

    They should not have hearings about Bush administration officials until Nancy Pelosi truthfully tells what she knew and when she knew it.

    Otherwise, this circus will have the feeling of a partisan witch hunt.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  105. John R Reid

    Yes and let the chips fall where they may. And that means Demos, as well as Repubs. Don't cherry pick the findings either. If there were laws broken then bring charges, no matter who they are. This war was about our form of government, and if we are no better than the Islamic terrorists, then the war was really for nothing.
    John
    Vancouver, WA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  106. Remo .............. Austin, Texas

    .
    Does Nuremberg ring a bell? Didn't we set the bar there?
    ..........................A WAR CRIME IS A WAR CRIME!........................
    The White House needs to shut up and let the investigation begin. President Obama won't be worth his weight in salt if he tries to stop it.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  107. Tom Mytoocents Fort Lauderdale Florida

    Jack
    Which department of the federal government decides which laws will be ignored and do we get to vote for them.....

    May 12, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  108. Ray Lawson from Danville, VA

    I think the democrats should spend some time looking for ways to cut spending in Washington. After all they have a 1.8 trillion dollar deficit for this fiscal year, Social Security and Medicare are going broke, Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac are still hemoraging money, as are AIG, GMC, Chrysler, and others. They are spending billions on ethynol production which does nothing that helps our energy problem, They want Detroit to build cars that no one wants to buy, They want to put a huge tax on carbon users which will be passed to consumers as higher utility costs, they have made it harder to drill for oil in this country so we are still dependent on foreign countries for most of our oil. They are subsidizing windmill and solar power at great cost but it will do very little to help our energy problem.
    Yet they want to see if we treated terrorists badly after we were attacked on 9/11. How do we get such losers in Washington?

    May 12, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  109. Mark

    Should Democrats hold hearings into Bush torture memos?
    I fear that hearings would take away too many resources from important issues like real healthcare for everyone, stopping the banks and corporate thieves who have brought this country to its knees and fixing the economy in general. Hearings might also be the one rallying point that could revive the irrelevant party!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  110. Dean from Modesto

    In seven words Jack, "I personally would like to see it."

    [PS: Thanks for asking,...and "sticking it to 'TheMan.'" :0)]

    May 12, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  111. Thom Richer

    Absolutely. This war was not justified, was and is illegal was and is immoral and all reponsible must be held accountable for their misdeeds. Surprise...people have died and dying still, money has been and continues to be wasted, lies told, people tortured and the Constitution ignored. Dispite all this, those responsible are free, writing books and profiting from the war(s) while facing no accountability because of political saving face or poitical cronyism . Both parties, if there is such a distinction, are obligated to disclose ALL to the American people. Without further delay or deceit.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    May 12, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  112. Laura Oregon City, Oregon

    Yes absolutely!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  113. james sloan

    Jack, we must have hearings. When are we going to stop lying about who we are? We lied to and cheated the Native Americans, Broke our promises to the newly freed slaves, etc. Now we say we don't torture. And Mr. Cheney says we got vital info. So that makes it acceptable. We either subscribe to the Geneva Conventions resolution or we don't. Let's stop lying to ourselves and everyone else. We have a lot to be proud of, so let's suck it up and own up tp or failings, do better, and move on. Jim Sloan/ Phoenixville, Pa.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  114. Randy

    YES! And, if there were any member of congress, democrat or republican, found to have knowledge of this, they should should be thrown out of congress. You can't make and enforce law if you disregard the law.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  115. Richard, Syracuse, NY

    YES. We are a Nation of Laws and Bush and his friends broke those Laws. Members of the US Military were tried for Waterboarding in Vietnam, so there is Case Law and no excuse my Bush or his Lawyers will justify his actions.

    If Republicans can go after Clinton and waste Millions of dollars on nothing more than an extra-maritial affair than we can go after Bush and Chaney for violating US Laws.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  116. Steve Canada

    The Democrats better stick to governing, and quit picking at all these old scabs. The electorate is soon going to lose patience with all this crap! The White House has made its position quite clear...Unless you want to see Cheney every Sunday for the rest of your life...Drop It !!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  117. Greg in PA

    Drop it Jack, just drop it. The future is forward pal, stop looking back.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  118. Ed Woodbridge,Va.

    Just what this country needs, those occupants of Capitol Hill holding more hearings! When do they find the time to discuss matters that really help fellow Americans? Americans are sick and tired of these lawmakers, on Capitol Hill who basically accomplish only one thing on a daily basis, "they take up time and space"! The only reason this proposed torture hearings are being tossed around on Capitol Hill is because the Democrats that control both houses are radical partisans who like nothing better than to trash the Republicans!
    If Pelosi can find the time from her busy travel schedule (Surprise visit to Iraq?) she ought to take President Obama's advice and NOT hold torture hearings period! Gee I wonder why Amnesty International is not in North Korea protesting their torture methods!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  119. Diana NJ

    No it should be done by both parties.. You have to find some Republican who are not afraid of Rush.... they have to be out there somewhere.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  120. Eileen Peabody MA

    Jack,

    At this point I think the nation (not necessarily just the Democrats) deserve some honest answers. After all, we went into the war in Iraq based on tainted reports.

    I honestly feel a quite investigation would have sufficed if Dick Chaney had kept his mouth shut. As it turns out, his current histrionics are screaming for public investigations and setting up President Bush and others to face the music. I guess he can’t see the huge part he played in all of this

    What a guy!!!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  121. Michael B Saskatoon Canada

    Yes! Don't let the "but it worked and saved lives" argument even be mentioned in the same breath! Dr. Mengila's supporters made that claim, Japanese soldier's tried it, and so did the Serbs. Regardless of it working or not, IT IS STILL A MAJOR CRIME THAT PEOPLE HAVE BEEN EXECUTED FOR! America has a choice right now. Regain her standing as a beacon of hope by prosecuting the torturers, or continue the collapse of her moral foundation and beliefs. Those are the ONLY TWO CHOICES America faces with this dark part of her history.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  122. Kim VA

    Hi Jack:

    Of course they should hold public hearings, it's the publics image and life that is at stake if these people broke the laws of the land.

    It's only right the people get to see, just how much our "representatives in the executive office" represented America.

    If it were you or I who did this, we would be "under the jail"

    May 12, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  123. John from Alaska

    Absolutely Jack. If we don't investigate and prosecute this horrible betrayal of our nation and constitution than we condemn our children or grandchildren to endure this same sad situation in the future. Whether or not it was effective does not matter. We could solve a lot more crimes with random door to door searches, but clearly citizens would not stand for such a violation of our constitution. So why do we tolerate torture in our names?

    May 12, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  124. vern-anaheim,ca

    not for bush but for dick cheney&karl rove

    May 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  125. Jenny from Nanuet, New York

    Yes. Nobody is above the law. Let's get to the truth wherever it leads and in the process, .Cheney will be silenced at the very least and put in jail if we're lucky. If anyone else gets caught up in the process, so be it.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  126. Robert Thomson - Southfield, MI

    The high crimes condoned and committed by the highest levels of the Bush administration need to be documented and prosecuted. We owe this to ourselves and to the world. Should a civilized world have turned a blind eye to the Nazi Holocaust and not prosecute those evildoers? This holocaust is no different and the crimes and criminals must be exposed and prosecuted in the same way. If we refuse to do this then maybe we ought to consider secret renditions to the world court in the Hague.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  127. cy gardner

    Did they break the law? Are they or anyone above the law? I would like to know. I would prefer a criminal trial to congressional hearings. The GOP held hundreds of hours of hearings to find out how the Clintons decided who would get a White House Christmas Card. Now we should all look the other way when we've earned the scorn of the world by breaking the Geneva Convention? If we were a truly great democracy with a belief in the rule of law and justice for all, then Dick Cheney would die in a prison cell. Cy Gardner, Arlington, VA

    May 12, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  128. Darren

    We are a nation of laws and we know torture took place diuring the Bush administartion, VP Cheney even admitted to it on Face The Nation. ergo we dpn't pursue those war criminals, we then become a nation of hypocrites.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  129. Jackie in Dallas

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    While I believe an investigation should be held, I’m with the Amnesty International group that it should be done by an independent investigative group, not Congress. I would prefer not to taint the results with petty political motives. I would prefer to think that the country, and the world, could see that the actions taken by the previous administration were investigated and researched in a non-partisan way, and any judgements rendered were also non-partisan.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  130. Tino

    Most certainly and YESSSSS!!! Unconstitutional, illegal acts were performed and the perpetrators should be called to stand trial. Have we forgotten no one is above the law. This country has come to treat the presidents as if they are royalty. They should be under stricter surveillance than we and called to task. And it's up to you the media to bring it to light. You've failed and do more sucking up for favorite treatment and fail us all the time. Where were you all during the last administration? Sucking up.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:49 pm |
  131. Patricia in Korea

    We just deported John Demjanjuk to Germany for alleged war crimes during WWII. What makes people like Dick Cheney, who proudly confessed to authorizing War Crimes and implicated Bush as well, any different? Either the law should apply to everyone, or it should apply to nobody. If we are willing to deport people to face charges for crimes in ther countries, we had better be willing to investigate and charge our own people.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  132. Tom, Virginia

    They should hold hearings using the same techniques that they prescribed. Maybe we will get to the bottom of it anfd find out who was responsible for the mess we are in.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  133. Jack Dempsey

    Jack, Democrats should worry about Democrats or the Republicans will come back . Jack From Nice, Ca.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  134. Jude in Rohnert Park, California

    Jack,

    The short answer is YES!! It's not about Pelosi, but if she knew, so be it. It's about the Bush administration breaking the law and lying about it for eight years!!

    May 12, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  135. AlanKovner

    Yes. Hey,....its TORTURE. Like any other word the more it's used the less the impact and the more blurred the meaning, as in "Instant Classic", "Heroes", "Freedom", "Liberal/Conservative",Limbaugh, Fantastic/Great/Awesome, and a lot more. This is TORTURE:\ A sadistic act . Not from me. Proseduted, yes. In a Federal Pen whewre they will be doing less time than most Marihuana guests AlanKovner
    Huntington, NY

    May 12, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  136. Terry from Illinois

    I think that Democrats and Republicans (aka-Congress) should hold hearings on the Bush interrogation or torture memos !!!

    Isn't these interrogation memos and what was known and approved to do one president more inportant than finding out about whether another president had an affair ???

    Republicans are hypocits to the most extreme... Democrats joined in for the presidental affair hearings so why aren't the Republicans joining in on the torture memos ???

    May 12, 2009 at 4:54 pm |
  137. Rick from Murfreesboro, TN

    Absolutely

    May 12, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  138. Michael, Kansas City, Missouri

    Why is it that when other countries use torture it is an outrage; yet, when we engage in it, it is 'necessary policy'? If Congress must be the agency that exposes the inhumanity of our actions at the highest level, so be it. Americans must, now and for all time, take a stand either with the protection of human dignity, or join forces with those we call 'terrorists'. A monster is monster, no matter what flag he/she waves.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  139. AndyZ Lynn, MA

    The law is the law. We have signed international agreements and have promised to abide by them. If it were me that was responsible for the water torture I would have been tried, found guilty and executed by now. Use the same standard to all persons suspected of violating the law. Use the Nuernburg War Crimes Trials as a yardstick and bring all in the previous administration to justice. This includes the former president and vice president.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  140. Terrance in Hartville, MO

    As a former Soldier and Airman, (I was in the Army 4 years and the Air Force for 6 years) let me say that I was taught by both services that Torture including Waterboarding was Illegal and against Article 3 of the Geneva Convention, and was also taught that anyone who took part in those practices would be court martialed and put in jail. I, along with every other soldier back then were taught about "illegal orders" and how to handle them as well. They have NO EXCUSES Jack, not one of them. Not the CIA or the Military. They knew it was wrong, and they did it. Try them and sentence them. End of story. ANYTHING ELSE IS JUST A COVER UP OF A WAR CRIME.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  141. Chuck W

    We would not accept a judge or sheriff letting a criminal go free simply for being a family member.

    Likewise, the world does not accept the US letting alleged war criminals go free just because they are US citizens.

    We sent an alleged NAZI war criminal off for trial on events of 50 years ago. We must hold our own people to the same standards we hold other people to.

    May 12, 2009 at 4:59 pm |
  142. Eleanora Feucht, Mt. Laurel, N.J.

    Of course we should. They have committed a crime! Not only should the Democrats (including the president) have hearings about this crime, but they should mete out appropriate punishment. If we don't, how will we be able to keep other bellicose nations from using the same cruel and inhumane punishment if they are unfortunate enough to be taken prisoner during a war?

    May 12, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  143. Talbot, New York

    Jack, Holding the hearings without Obama's approval is politically the smartest way to handle it for everyone. It shows that the Bushies can't get away with torture, and lets Obama stay free of the mess.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  144. joe m

    many democratic leaders in the house and senate will not let this go until it plays out. it's a way for them to wash their hand of this chapter of american history even though many of them were very much deeply involved in the entire affair. i'd like to see if these hearing will put nancy pelosi and other democratic leaders who may have had full knowledge on the stand. get it all out in the open and let the chip fall where they may.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  145. Dennis

    Of course, what is the problem. Heck Cheney admitted on Fox last week that he agreed with torture and Bush signed off on it. There is your confession, but nothings gonna happen. Were to much of a bunch of wimps when it comes to going after or Politicians, except when it evolves sex.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  146. Marin

    Yes, the public has a right to know, especially since they are using the voices of American's to carry out their dirty deeds, protecting us from who knows what, justifying their actions....well, since that's the case, I'd like to know exactly what's been going on since they speak on behalf of me.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  147. John, Fort Collins, CO

    The Democrats in congress should continue investigating every angle of the torture issue until they understand how it happened, then enact changes to ensure it can never happen again. However, in the interest of fairness, they should also look into exactly what House Speaker-With-Two-Tongues Pelosi knew about what went on and why she did nothing to attempt to stop it.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  148. Tim M

    YESSSSS.....these cronies need to answer for their reign of lawless actions against not only the world, but fellow americans as well. Nobody is above the law!! Or are they??

    May 12, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  149. Diane in St. Louis MO

    HMMM...you can find my answer in my question to you, Jack...

    "Should police interrogate witnesses to a crime even if the alleged criminal disagrees?"

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  150. John Sacco

    Let sleeping dogs lie. We need to focus on the future not the past. It all sounds like the typical costly Washington boondoggle to me.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  151. Mark

    Should Democrats hold hearings into Bush torture memos?
    I fear that hearings would take away too many resources from important issues like real healthcare for everyone, stopping the banks and corporate thieves who have brought this country to its knees and fixing the economy in general. Hearings might also be the one rallying point that could revive the irrelevant party!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  152. Tim in Texas

    I think we can compare our law regarding torture to that regarding assisted suicide. We have a law against assisted suicide because even though most of us can imagine some specific situations wherein helping someone leave this world is morally justifiable, we still need the law in place. We need the law because it sets a line & says, "If you cross this line, you better think damn hard before doing so. You need to be absolutely certain that you have a clear moral imperative for your actions. You need to be so firmly convinced that what you are doing is right thing that you are willing to take the consequences if the public does not agree with you." Obama is correct in resetting the torture policy back to where it was - a clear line that puts a tremendous burden on the person who choses to cross the line. Investigations are right because we need to know with certainty that those who crossed the line did so in extigent circumstances & with a clear moral imperative driving their actions. Finally, Dick Cheney needs to stop saying that having a clear policy against torture makes us less safe, what it does is insure that nobody can ever make this decision without potential consequences.
    Tim in Texas

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  153. P.Mendenhall

    Yes, yes yes !!!! We must hold these criminals accountable for their crimes!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  154. Denise

    Yes. Bush, Cheney, Rummsfield, Rice, the attornies, and everybody should be held accountable.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  155. Janne - NC

    Yes, by all means they should go ahead. Bush is gone so he really can't be hurt but maybe this will FINALLY get rid of Pelosi.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  156. Raul Martinez

    Why are we even asking this question? They should all be rounded up and forced to testify in front of Congress so that we make sure this never happens again, under any President. After which, ship them off to the Hague for trial on charges of murder and crimes against humanity. No more talking!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  157. bob5540

    "Should Democrats hold hearings into the Bush interrogation memos even if the White House disagrees?"

    YES.

    Even if some Democrats may be implicated?

    Speaking as a Democrat myself:
    YES!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  158. David A Whitaker

    Hey Jack this country has to let this go, if we start question everything a president done his administration. There will be nothing good will come out of this, just more hatred between the different parties. I return the whole country lose, we need to work together.

    David
    Martinsburg, WV

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  159. Tim, Albany NY

    Yes they should. Torture is a awful crime that is barbaric and should not be allowed in the world. The Bush administration needs to be brought to justice for these crimes.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  160. Gerard in Virginia

    Yes, the Dems hearings should be continued. Both Democrats and Republicans should be interested in learning the truth.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  161. Jim Blevins

    It always helps to air dirty laundry. Chances of that civilizing the many barbaric savages in this country is about zero.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  162. Bonnie from Indiana

    If a lot of people are hung up to dry, so be it! Torture is NEVER right. It is not a political issue, it is a human rights' issue. Torture is not a Christian value. The end does NOT justify the means. Might does NOT make right. If this behavior goes unpunished what are we telling our children, what are we telling generations to come?
    I just can't understand why there is not an uproar from the religious right. Can anything be more UnChristian?!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  163. Diane from Intervale NH

    By sweeping a potential investigation under the rug, Democrats would l make all Americans – regardless of party – complicit in torture. Let the chips fall where they may and, like Jack, I agree that many heads will (and should) roll.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  164. Liz West

    Jack,

    It's a dirty job, but somebody'd gotta do it. That is why we have 3 branches of government. Go get em, Congress.

    Liz

    Sacramento, CA

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  165. Lynn

    YES YES YES. We as a country need to start respecting the truth again. We need to hear it to heal.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  166. E. Elliott

    Yes, Jack and before any convenient deaths prevent the truth from comming out. We can hear Chaney's daily rant, clearly designed to avoid reaching a war crimes trial where his guilt is obvious. We need to know what was in those VP's office meetings in 2001 and who planned the war of argession against Iraq & why. We must do this to restore the Nation's honor.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  167. Lena (West Bloomfield, MI)

    Of course! Whether or not the White House disagrees is irrelevant. Torture is a violation of international law, and any official that authorized or facilitated torture should be prosecuted. Btw – I'm very disappointed with Obama that he didn't take a strong stance regarding prosecuting members of the former Bush administration for authorizing torture.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  168. Sean in California

    Yes. It's congress' JOB to hold hearings and investigate crimes by an administration, even AFTER that administration is no longer in power. The White House isn't and should not be the 'decider' (forgive the use of that shopworn term) about what is and isn't legal.

    Congress can still pass legislation that President Obama asks for and prosecute the bush administration simultaneously. It's called walking and chewing gum at the same time, and with a Democratic majority, that should be possible, even if people like Boehner can't legislate and get a tan at the same time.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  169. David

    Of course congress should go ahead with their hearings and investigations without White House approval. This would support our system of separate powers; the three branches of goernment.

    David

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  170. Barbara NY

    Yes, let's hold hearings. Let's expose every dirty little thing that was done in the name of protecting the "homeland". However, I don't really care what Nancy Pelosi knew back in 2002, 2003, etc. The Republicans were in power and weren't about to listen to her anyway. Now the big "men" in the Republican party want to drag her down with them. Bush and Cheney were going to do what ever they wanted. Yes let's get the truth out there, I'm sick of seeing Cheney's face all over the news.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  171. Alex

    Yes, Jack. The Congress should investigate torture ESPECIALLY if the WH disagrees. It's called oversight and inter-branch agreement is a hinderence and obstruction to finding the truth.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  172. Milton

    The Bush administration broke the law. The fact that we have to have a debate about what to do is pathetic. Waterboarding is torture, and torture is illegal in the United States. What else is there to debate? Congress should of course investigate this matter.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  173. Jessica Wicks

    Jack I am as good a democrat as they come and worked hard to elect this president. But acquiescence to torture knows no party lines. It is not only a violation of our principles as a nation, but it is against the law and no man or woman is above the law.

    I support a full investigation including the parts played by all branches of government. If Democrats were involved, then they have betrayed not only their party, but their nation. The truth must be learned and trials held for those who broke the law.

    Jessica Wicks
    Minneapolis, Minnesota

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  174. Susan Frost

    Absolutely. There's no way to get around the fact that war crimes were committed. We need to get to the bottom of the matter and those involved in perpetrating and/or covering up these atrocities should be punished to the full extent of the law. It's not a matter of "right vs. left" but of RIGHT vs. WRONG. Get to the truth and let the chips fall, even if they fall on some Democrats, too.

    Susan
    Tuscaloosa, AL.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  175. Chris and Mary Fogarty

    The Constitution MUST be restored. Also our international treaties must no longer be violated. The torturers must be prosecuted if our republic is to be reestablished.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  176. P.K

    Ya why not. I think the culprits, all from the top, should be made examples of ( like they did to those poor soldiers ) so no body in the future dare do it again.
    If we let it go, there is no difference between US and them.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  177. thomas

    No jack!! let's not waste any more time on this issue!! The president wants to move on and so should the democrats!!! Water boarding was used to help protect our country and our citizens so get over it!! We have so many other issues to deal with so let's keep our eye on the ball shall we!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  178. Fran Topolski

    The Democrats should not be opening a separate investigation on the torture procedures.I am tired of the Democrats/Congress opening investigations on the past and essentially wasting my tax money. They need to focus on the future and try to secure our lifestyle for the next ten years.Congress is always looking to put the blame on someone for the past.It is a waste!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  179. howard

    Absolutely yes. Torture is a crime. If some of the the criminals happen to be democrats, so be it.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  180. Mark Stone

    Yes Jack, we did wrong and the whole world knows it! Now it's time to show the whole we can clean our own house, and put that white hat back on!

    Mark Stone, Kona Hi.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  181. Peter Joannidis

    The legislature is an independent body of government and is there to check the power and/or abuses of the other two branches.
    I am a strong supporter of Obama but clearly the executive has its own needs and power to protect...One of this may unfortunately be the continuance of forms of torture unless we make it very public what the previous president had done. What will stop this president from trouncing our principles of fairness and humanity in justice.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  182. paulo

    I guess they are power mongers now. What is done is done, our counrty was at war at that time.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  183. Stan, Canada

    When all politicians around the world undergo daily polygraph tests, perhaps I'll start to believe the things that come out of their mouths, perhaps... I mean not all politicians can pass a polygraph while telling little white lies, it's not statistically probable. Trust is earned not given blindly, the public needs collection contact lenses.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  184. Donald Baker

    I think the Democrats should not politicize national security efforts from the past administration because it could hamper current efforts underway. Extracting sensitive information from our enemies saves American lives, and the lives of those we seek to protect. This is not a left/right issue, and should not be used for any political gain. There are simply some things our government does that ensures our security that we probably don't really need to know about.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  185. Donald, Old Westbury, NY

    They should investigate fully and prosecute. This would ensure that everyone tells all under oath. I would suggest pardons to all except those that commit perjury. The goal is to find the truth and make sure it never happens again.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  186. Jim from Detroit

    Well, if they do, they better make sure they have the evidence necessary to ensure a 100% chance of conviction because if President Bush, or Vice President Cheney, or anyone else in the administration is ever found not guilty, there are going to be a lot of democrats who will have some explaining to do to the public.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  187. Tony IL

    Jack,
    I don't think so. How much taxpayer money is going to be spent on this nonsense. At a time when the economy is in the toilet and the deficit keeps rising, the government needs to put the brakes on this type of spending. What's done is done, leave it be. All this is a power struggle between the White House and Pelosi. Pelosi has been on her soap box ever since she got the speaker position. She believes Obama owes her and the Democrats for getting him into the White House.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  188. Dolores

    Hearings should absolutely be held on torture! Torture is only one of the many transgressions that Bush/Cheney got away with. Watergate was a Sunday School picnic compared to the torture that was a terrible violation of American values. Failure to pursue hearings allows the setting of a very dangerous precedent!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  189. Paulette,Dallas,PA

    Yes. In fact,I think the Obama Administration should appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate the situation and hold all involved accountable for their actions. Pelosi is a coward. She needs to admit what she knew and when. Not that there could have been anything ANYONE would have been able to do to persuade the Bush group to alter their strategies. Nancy needs to own up or be made to resign.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  190. Ron Ouellette

    Jack,
    Isn't it great to see these Power Brokers keep changing their statements almost on a daily basis trying to absolve themselves?? I guess that
    these folks just DON'T GET it that WE, the American People, voted for change in the last election, we voted for transparency and most of all THE TRUTH. As an American I DEMAND that these matters be looked into and investigated and let the chips fall where they may.
    THE JIG IS UP and its about time.
    Ron – Florida

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  191. Bud Pratt Punta Gorda, FL

    You’re darn tootin they should hold hearings.

    Torture is one of the policies no civilized people should ever tolerate, regardless of expediency. Some others are slavery, cannibalism, and human sacrifice.

    Bud Pratt Punta Gorda, FL

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  192. Dick in Minnesota

    They should all be arrested.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  193. Chris S, Miami

    Absolutely! If Obama wants to keep anyone out of jail, he should be required to pardon them. The idea that the president can just ask the AG to not even investigate accusations of possible WAR CRIMES makes me nauseous!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  194. Nick

    Yes, they should. President Obama wants to avoid a nasty political fight because he feels that there are more important things to pursue for the time being. However, laws are not meant to be upheld simply whenever it's convenient.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  195. Sharon Christiansen, Park City, UT

    JACK:
    Absolutely! We are a country of laws. Laws were apparently broken. Cheney has admitted as much on various news programs. If we do not hold people accountable, then we are no better than those that committed the WAR CRIMES. While Cheney claims that we only used "harsh techniques" on three, there is evidence that at least 100 detainees died. There has also been testimony from several released "detainees" that were later released due to their being wrongly picked up, that they were treated to harsh techniques.
    Sharon
    Park City, UT

    May 12, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  196. John Smith

    If our public servants, from current presidents on down, should be held twice as accountable for their actions as any common citizen. They wished to hold the job-position and challenged all others to obtain it; in doing so, they held themselves as best suited to carry out the wishes and represent the American citizens. If they best they can do is pick up the tactics and actions of our enemies then they should be held just as accountable as we hold our enemies.

    If we do not weed them out at this point, how long before such tactics are used on American citizens who are imprisoned, political prisoners or any citizen who is unpopular with our "run-amok-government."

    Regards,
    JS

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  197. Jim

    Everyone in the world is aware of the facts, we all KNOW Bush,Cheeny,Rice,Rumsfield,Powell all are guilty of WAR CRIMES..and their FAKE war on drugs and Terror. How can anyone ever take our country serious if they DONT got to JAIL. They desirve PRISON. Maybe we can let a few pot heads go free and use the JAIL space for them, I think 40 yrs in prison sounds right.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  198. Rod

    Jack, of course! The sanctioning of torture at the highest levels of government (now admitted openly by past administration officials) is a terrible precedent that needs to be investigated. The US is a nation of laws. It is important to preserve the integrity of its democracy to conduct a throrough root cause analysis of how decisions were made and plans were implemented. No one should be above the law and no one should be allowed to invoke a "let's put this behind" nonchalant attitude to justify unlawful strategies and actions. If democrats are implicated too, so be it.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  199. John From Illinois

    Absolutely ! If it was the democrats that did it republicans would have them jail right now !

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  200. David P. Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – The Constitution makes Congressional hearings into allegations of Federal wrongdoing mandatory, not optional. All Administrations oppose these – they are the ones culpable if the law was violated. The chain of command puts Congress outside, not inside, Defense Intelligence activities – Congress persons are not culpable for any wrongdoing by the Executive whether or not the Executive chose to share the facts with them. A lot of people need to retake their Civics classes – most of this debate is nonsense – the law is clear, the system is well-understood, the Bush Administration did what it did, and Congress has to determine whether there needs to be more or different law to prevent Executive crime. Meanwhile, the AG and his team will determine who, if anyone, must be charged with a crime and prosecuted – and there was a crime! Time for the Bushies to suffer the consequences of their actions.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  201. marie

    The Democrats should proceed. This is bigger than our beloved president or any president. The country needs to know.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  202. Jon-Paul

    Pelosi knew! Everyone knew! The problem is that not one of our representatives in Congress had the gusto to take a stand on the issue. This is just another testiment to the corrupt nature of the government. She is just as responsible for torture if she even suspected that it was being conducted and took no action to renounce the tactic.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  203. djsmith ukiah ca

    Ideally, an in-depth investigation would be on a bipartisan basis. Since the hard line stands in arrogance these days, the party in power must go it alone. Either way, the laws of the United States, the United Nations and of International Treaties (the laws of the land) have been broken with intent to harm. This situation requires an investigation. Say amen, Jack.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  204. warren

    If Pelosi is not telling the truth,she should be fired and maybe thjey could get someone truthful.Not likely,but they could try.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  205. Sandy

    YES that is part of their job the last eight years went unchecked.
    I don't care who heard what where and when, this is to ALL AMERICANS
    this was done with in our name.
    We are better than that!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  206. Sam from South Dakota

    Why should this not be prosecuted? I understand if President Obama wants to "look forward" and not dwell on the past, but we cannot just let this go. A parent cannot always simply tell a child "just don't do it again." The same rule applies to this national situation. As a young American, I don't want this to turn into a subtle invitation for future generations of my country's leaders to violate international law without fear of consequences. I won't suffer another Dick Cheney and company in decades to come.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  207. Tomasz

    Greetings;

    Nazis were not allowed to use the excuse of "Following orders" or "We believed the people detained to be threats to national security".
    In fact you see even to this day accused Nazis being flown to Germancy to be tried and killed.

    If the Nazis cannot evade prosecution, why do US troops and CIA officials evade the fate of the Nazis? Simply because they have American citizenship?

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  208. Carolyn Cupps

    Yes it should be investigated. We have a right to know if there were criminal actions taken by the previous administration.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  209. JMT

    No
    Unless the dems swear a formal oath they will resign en mass the first time a terrorist attack succeeds on US soil.
    The dems seem to ignore the little detail that moraility involves repsonsibility for both commission and omission.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  210. chris mclaughlin

    jack, i would love nothing more than to see the bush administration held responsible for their wrongdoings and their lack of preserving our laws when it comes to turture, but we cannot undo what has been done. all we can do is make sure that it doesnt happen in the future. congress has got more pressing issues to deal with other than taking time to keep the bush name and the chenny name in the news. the american people made it very clear in november that we were ready to move on. congress should do the same.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  211. Ken in NC

    I think they should not go forward with hearings. With some material being classified they may have to resort to enhanced interrogation techniques to get information from Bush, Cheney and Limbaugh.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  212. Diane Miller

    Of course the members of Congress should uphold their oath of office and protect and defend the Constitution by looking into these accusations. It is also incumbent upon us to do so in order to follow the rules of the anti-torture treaty we signed. We are obliged to look into any and all accusations of torture, no matter where or when they occurred. I am disappointed that President Obama, a Constitutional Law Professor, would even consider doing less – fortunately, it is not up to him. No one is above the law in this country, not even King George W. Bush and his cronies. Let's not set a precedent by letting the former Administration – or any citizen of the United States – get away with such actions. If Nancy Pelosi's hand are dirty in this, she should be held accountable for her actions – or inactions – also. And anyone else – even Bill Clinton, if it comes to that.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  213. Karl from SF, CA

    Over 200 years ago we set up a government that could walk and chew gum at the same time. Since then we have fought many wars and won them all without torturing, until now. We need an independnent prosecutor to look into this because war crimes are not a partisan issue. These war crimes have to be dealt with. It is not the President’s option. If Republicans block this, they must be the non-Americans in Congress that Michelle Bachmann was referring to. A true American doesn’t tolerate war crimes of any kind and would want those who are guilty prosecuted regardless of who they are.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  214. Alex Toronto

    I don't think the Democrats can hold the hearings against the Republicans, when the object of a hearing should be a super-partes evaluation and analysis of what happened.
    Beyond that, it is not acceptable that tortures made on foreigne citizen should be view and judged according to the US laws, when it is a clear matter of international penal justice all over the world.
    In a globalised World we can call JUSTICE only what is merely close to what regulated by the International Law and not simply by the domestic legislations. Otherwise US tortures and Iran tortures are/were both allowed and legal. Even though everyone would recognised ir as a crime against the humanity according to the international law and legal definition of torture, and human rights violation. Thanks (Toronto/Ontario)

    May 12, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  215. warren

    If Pelosi is not telling the truth,she should be fired and maybe they could get someone truthful.Not likely,but they could try.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  216. Bud Punta Gorda, FL

    You’re darn tootin they should hold hearings.

    Torture is one of the policies no civilized people should ever tolerate, regardless of expediency. Some others are slavery, cannibalism, and human sacrifice.

    Bud Pratt Punta Gorda, FL

    May 12, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  217. alan gilbert

    no they shouldn't. the only way democrats can harm themselves right now is to show that they are more left wing than the white house and thereby distance themselves from the presidents popularity. there is no need to flex their muscles – they are firmly in power.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  218. John Berkeley Heights New Jersey

    I believe the hearings will cause incredible division in the country.
    While I was no supporter of George W. Bush, after 9/11 he was responsible for the lives of 300+ million Americans and that's a responsibility his critics haven't shouldered.
    I'm hoping President Obama is a two term President, but there will be big mistakes made during his administration and it's setting a hideous precedent to start investigating the previous administration.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  219. Matt

    Jack, I really think that a hard definition of "torture" needs to be established prior to any investigation, lest it remain the nebulous term it has been floating around as politically convenient to those bandying about with it. Only then can a legitimate hearing be held on whether there was in fact torture and not just loud rock music being played, as some have claimed to have been torturous. Anyone can be convicted of anything if the meaning of the language is at your political whim. With that established, then absolutely the House of Representatives should proceed with lawful intent (instead of their current political witch hunt).

    May 12, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  220. Oscar of Hawaii

    If Bush people believe that the American people would understand why they broke our own law by torturing this alleged terrorist, why didn't they come out during Bush era if means saving the American life? After 8 years of Bushing the America, what made them think that we would just dismiss everything. Its consider crime back then, still consider crime today.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  221. Jeremy, South Carolina

    We do have laws don't we? No matter who gives an order. If you break a law you have to pay the price. This is sending a big signal to the people that as long as you are in a high political position that it is ok to break the law. Bush should be the first questioned in an open hearing. If we don't do anything it is going to create even more kaos and deciete in the government.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  222. Bob

    Yes. Congressneeds tp conduct a thorough investigation and if it embarrasses anyone, so what. We need to decide if we are a nation who believes in the rule of law or a bunch on blustering cowards that resort to the same sort of despicable acts we executed Germans and Japanese for perpetrating on our soldiers. Horrific as the attack on the World Trade Center was, it does not justify throwing away our principles and becoming the same sort of dishonorable monsters as those that attacked us.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  223. Tony

    Orangevale, CA. If Dich Cheney was being 'waterboarded' I'm sure he would consider this to be considered torture. The law is the law, investigate these criminals for war crimes, the same as we did after WW2

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  224. Dan

    There should be no hearings against the republicans, water boarding is not torture, it is scaring slime balls that want Americans dead. If dems go after Bushes people, they better go after Pelosi for knowing and agreeing with their tactics. Instead of water boarding, why don't we very nicely ask these killers to tell us the 'truth' and cook them a nice steak dinner for their honesty!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  225. Rich, Kankakee, IL.

    Congress does not need the approval of the President, or the Justice Department at all. Part of their job is oversight, and for years they have given it over to both the President and the Justice Department, so that they would not show up the President and interrupt his plans for the country. The American people should come first, then what is right and just, and finally what is noble if they know what this these days they are really having trouble showing it! How can we as a nation know that something is illegal and yet allow the crazy people like Cheney to argue that torture is right at anytime, when it is wrong all the time, no matter the cost! Either we are honorable people or we are not, we can not straddle the fence, if we do we are nothing but fakes and frauds!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  226. Jerry from Kentucky

    Yes they should hold hearings. And while there at they should tire
    Bush, Cheney, and Donald R. for war crimes.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  227. joseph Judge

    If the senators were really interested in the truth about US torture, I would agree that there should be an investigation. However, the hypocritical set we have in both parties are only interested in nailing the opposition and boosting their own stature. So, I say, let the matter drop. It only provides propaganda for the Muslims.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  228. DonH

    Fascists torture. It is as simple as that. Anyone involved in torture should be investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, including any Democrats (Nancy Pelosi maybe ) that gave their blessing.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  229. Nick

    Our governmet has so many evil criminals its hard to know where to start,but Bush and his buddys sounds like a good place to me. But we all know the Powerful get pardon no Jail. thats only for the people who pay the bills...These guys are clearly war criminals, but ill bet my house and car, they wont ever see jail or anykind of pusnishment..Thats a FACT JACK.. get real. They are just like the criminal CIA above the law. Period

    May 12, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  230. Ron Kriel

    Let's see, we are sending a Nazi guard back to Germany for crimes committed during WWII. It would seem that there is no statute of limitations for war crimes. Torture should fall under the heading of war crimes and should therefore be open for prosecution after the retirement of the Bush Administration. Congress is tasked with the formulation of laws and investigations. So yes, if there was wrong doing, Congress should investigate and punish those found guilty.

    Ron K.
    Auburn, Alabama

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  231. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    Yes, but not just to try and punish for how bad a president Bush was to everyone, but to set a precedence for future presidents.
    Our last president believed he was above the law, and would not be accountable-(definition of a sociopath). We must prevent future presidents from believing this!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  232. warren AZ

    Thry should get rid of her.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  233. Charles Mills

    Bush, Cheaney, Condi Rice, and Rumsfeld should be hung out to dry, for abuseing their athority, then thrown in a dungon somewhere to rot.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  234. Carol B

    Yes Jack, I think they should go foward with the investigation. Growing up in the midwest I was taught...you break the law, you pay the price. Why should that be any different for those in Washington who seem to think they are above the law? By the way, Im reading your book....about half way through it...so far so good!!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  235. Annie, Atlanta

    Absolutely not, but not because of what the White House thinks. I wouldn't trust anyone in congress to pick up my garbage each week. This belongs with the DOJ or a special prosecutor. This is important to our good name and congress is inept.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  236. American Citizen

    Most definitely there should be inquisitions on the indiscretions of the previous administration. It's critical that if you do something illegal, regardless of your position, that an investigation be completed, and justice applied. Otherwise, it's ludicrous to think America should be able to walk around speaking about, "truth, liberty, and justice for all." Not only should it be done, it's a necessity!!!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  237. John / Chicago

    This Congress needs to start looking forward and quit blaming the prior administration for everything. The Dem's have been in control of the House and Senate since '06 and have not have a major impact at all. Additionally, if there is a hearing the Democrats who were briefed and had knowledge should also be held accountable not just the Bush Administration. Also, if we do have hearings let's not stop there as AG Holder was all for Renditions when he was the Deputy AG under Clinton. Hence, he was all for giving international criminals to states which promoted torture.

    Sooner or later the Dem's will need to take ownership of the direction of this country being they control the White House, the Senate and House of Representatives. While blaming the Repub's for everything gained them control they better start to Govern or else they will be committing political suicide!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  238. pete in ny

    Sure- that way we can look like a real third world nation. While w're at it why don't we have some show trials and a few executions.

    On top of this we can have the spectacle of leaky Leahy- removed from the intelligence committee for divulging classified information – pontificating about justice. Add to that the spectacle of Nancy Pelosi under oath trying to correlate her many versions of when she knew about waterboarding. Can anyone spell "PERJURY"

    May 12, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  239. Larry C

    When 911 happened it brought home to the US that we are weak when it comes to the tatics of the islamic exstremist, We are only human and may have over reacted. Punishing those that caried out the orders does not make us rightous again. Any one of the protesters in Washington would torture another person that was holding information on someone dear to them like their own child if that child was in danger of being killed. We have been taught to fight fire with fire and eye for an eye. Remember freedom is not free it comes with the ultimate price. Think about yourself before you judge others and you will find that you may not be as rightous as you think.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  240. Kerry

    For the past eights years, this White House has used Executive Privlege, and has been the most secretive in sharing information.

    Until Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Harriet Myers, & Josh Bolten have conversations under oath, they have no credibility. With Dick Cheney 's hand on the bible in front of Congress, I will pay more attention to his words regarding Valerie Plame, U.S Attorneys, & torture.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  241. Leslie

    I think that congress should hold all open hearings and prosecute those who broke the torture laws in any way. The last administration killed more united staes citizens than the terrorist of 9/11. Their families deserve closure and we should demand justice. If the president is smart he will stay out of this one and ,let this investigation lead where it should straight to, by his own admission the former vice president

    May 12, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  242. Purnell, Kankakee, IL.

    Congress does not need the approval of the President, or the Justice Department at all. Part of their job is oversight, and for years they have given it over to both the President and the Justice Department, so that they would not show up the President and interrupt his plans for the country. The American people should come first, then what is right and just, and finally what is noble if they know what those are these days they are really having trouble showing it! How can we as a nation know that something is illegal and yet allow the crazy people like Cheney to argue that torture is right at anytime, when it is wrong all the time, no matter the cost! Either we are honorable people or we are not, we can not straddle the fence, if we do we are nothing but fakes and frauds!

    Purnell, Kankakee IL

    May 12, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  243. Sharon: Anchorage, Alaska

    Congress must focus on the current downhill slide our country is on, with interest & inflation barking at the door, which is highest priority. Absolutely NO on hearings, unless they include Nancy Pelosi as one of the persons being investigated. Congress wants to focus our attention elsewhere, while serious damage is being done in other areas. They are MASTER magicians.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  244. John Webster, Aldergrove BC Canada

    Of course Jack, the reason for a President and two legislative bodies in the loop is to ensure full coverage and wide thinking in dealing with running the country. Obama is the president, not the end all and be all and the rest of the members of government have a duty to the voters to listen to them and not just to the current resident of the white house.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  245. Dan

    No...water boarding is not torture, it is scaring slime balls, that's it. What are dems going to do about Pelosi and other dems that agreed on water boarding. I have an idea, let's cook these terrorists a steak dinner and ask them very nicely to tell us what we want to know! this new administration needs to stop blaming bush for everything!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  246. Jo Ann/Gulf Shores, AL

    Yes, Congress should investagate everyone involved. Isn't it interesting that Ibn-al-Sheikh al-lib captured in 2001and tortured while held in Egypt giving the confession the Bush/Cheney administrated wanted and was used by Colin Powell at his UN speech in 2003 that al Qaeda and Sadaam were linked. Today he committed suicide. How convenient. This is not a 24 show. Over 100 detainees have died while being interrogated, 30 are now being investigated as homicides. And if the Democrates are involved so be it. 230 years ago our forefathers fought and died on American soil to give us freedom under a Constitution and rules of law not a King. 148 years ago 650,000 Americans died to preserve the union and end slavery. Torture is illegal and immoral. It is not used to gain information but confessions. Ask John McCain. I will not change my principles because of 19 highjackers. And I do not think Americans should change the principles that have servered us well for 230 years.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  247. Dan

    We lost our children, our treasure,our way of life, our freedoms, our Human rights, we even got legal torure prisons Not to mention 2 wars and the death of millions. And you ask if their war criminals ? Its clear crime DOES PAY, and Its very Clear they are all ABOVE THE LAW. We live a Giant Lie. They will never see one day in Jail, if they do ill eat my shorts !! It will never happend, Its a Legal mafia and yes they are criminals , but their in power and make the laws as they go along. Thats the truth Jack...simple as that.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  248. Brick Imerman/ Guthrie Center, Iowa

    Jack – I earned a Bronze Star in combat and am SERE trained. I have seen the waterboard. It has been used for DECADES in our military training.

    Here's your logic test for the day: If you want to investigate the Bush Administration for waterboarding terrorists (which gained valuable information on AlQaida leaders and upcoming attacks on America), then what should be done to the Clinton Administration for authorizing the waterboarding of innocent military members who were forced to undergo the procedure against their will during training?

    If there was a crime committed by Bush, then it seems to me that the one committed by Clinton on his own countrymen was even more heinous.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  249. Sue

    Yes, No one is above the law. Or are laws only meant for the middle class or poor? We are sending the wrong message to the world again. If they do it they are wrong if the USA does it then it's ok. If this is ignored then we as Americans should be ashame.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  250. Jerry

    Yes, And there should be prosicution starting from the top, And we probably would not be in this mess if Nancy Pelosie did not take the impeachment of George W. Bush off the table. And I think the Justice dept. Should start prosicutions and don't sweep it under the rug. These were laws that were broken, and America needs to know if there are two sets of laws, or is there just one law, the one every decent American is supposed to abide by including Presidents, Vice Presidents and Speakers of the house, Former Justice dept. head, Did you hear this Mr Holder of the new Justice dept?
    Jerry/ Iowa

    May 12, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  251. Deanna

    America and Medieval should not be synonymous. It's really that simple. I say that those who try to argue in favor of torture, are cowards. They don't have the strength, or integrity, or loyalty, or patriotism, to stand up for our core principles. People who stand with traitors like Dick and Liz Cheney, Rush Limbaugh and those of his putrid ilk, are anathema to everything we've wanted to believe that we represent as a nation. They deserve to be shunned by the media,and every American who believes in the essence of what we are willing to fight and die for. Give them their freedom of expression, and then turn your backs on them.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  252. Alan Hayes

    Yes, Congress should investigate the Bush torture progam. We spent hundreds of millions of taxpayers money to investigate such serious issues as White Water, Troopergate, Filegate, and stains on a blue dress. Surely we can spare a few bucks to learn how Bush violated US laws as well as International law. All in our name.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  253. Diane Thurm

    I find it incredible that the Democrats would attempt a witch hunt in regard to so called torture tactics by the Bush administration. The presidents duty is to take all and any measures to protect American citizens. Over 3000 citizens were killed in 9/11, and some in Congress seem to quickly forget that. At a time when terrorists were cutting peoples heads, a big hoopla was made over abu-garib & water boarding. Hardly a peep was made over the beheadings from the NY times ( a horrible excuse for a paper). The vast majority of the people do not want people prosecuted who were following orders, and doing their best to protect our country. I think actions taken by the Democrats will weaken our security, but that doesn't seem to matter.
    You won the election , so get over it. Let's move on and keep our Country secure.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  254. David P. Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – Bill Clinton was impeached for NOTHING because the votes were there to do it. He was not convicted because the votes were not there to do it, especially when there was no case. Nixon was going to be impeached, for similar stuff to what the Bushies did, but resigned and was pardoned. The country could not afford to spend the time on a failed G W Bush impeachment, but it cannot afford to not spend the time to uncover, and, if appropriate, prosecute, those who ordered torture and ordered their lawyers to put a legal argument together for cover. John Yoo should be disbarred, and both Bush and Cheney should be charged with violation of Geneva Convention Article 3, which is Federal law too because it is a legally ratified treaty! Jesse Ventura, former Navy SEAL, told Larry King that he had SEER training, was waterboarded therein, and that it is most definitely torture, in fact as well as in law. SEER training is legal because the victims are volunteers, not because waterboarding is not torture; John Yoo had this part dead wrong!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  255. Steve Porter

    Congress should definitely hold hearings and heads should roll! How about holding the architects of the whole Iraq fiasco responsible for plunging the US and the Middle East into war, specifically, Bush, Cheney, et al? Whatever happened to "the buck stops here"?!

    Palmdale, CA

    May 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  256. Terri

    Funny we expect criminals to punish criminals for Obvious war crimes, what a funny Joke. Nothing will ever come out of it, everyone knows they are above the law. Why pretend there is justice , there is none and never will be, cause there never has been.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  257. dan

    NO! Water boarding is not torture, how else are we going to get this info from terrorists, ask them very nice not to lie or should we try cooking them a steak dinner? If they go after republicans, pelosi better fry also! Love your show Jack!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  258. Jim Horn

    The Congress should appoint an independent investigative team to find out the facts regarding torture. That independent body should then report its findings to Congress and the Attorney General's Office. If crimes have been committed, charges should be brought. War crimes is not something we cannot sweep under the rug, regardless of which of the complicit cowards in Washington are called out. The Democrats investigate, or Congress investigate? No way–they are the same cowards that looked the other way for 8 years.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  259. Missy

    Yes. Let the truth come out – that way we will only have one version of it.

    Missy M. near Phoenix, Ariz.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  260. Purnell, Kankakee, IL.

    Either our laws matter or they do not; we can not live in a country that forgoes what is right for a fake since of safety. Benjamin Franklin said give me liberty or give me death for a reason. And that reason is because one can not live in a country where torture and being striped of our rights is always hanging over our head. Because as long as your government does to ours who are not apart of your nation, they will soon find a reason to do it to their own people when they decent too! Those who would give up their Liberty for fake safety deserve nether Safety or Liberty!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  261. Joe M

    The Bush administration broke the law. The fact that we have to have a debate about what to do is pathetic. Waterboarding is torture, and torture is illegal in the United States. What else is there to debate? There is no justice this is a Joke.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  262. Cody nj

    Why? We can argue all we want over this but we need to stop dwelling on the past. Get over it!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  263. Jim

    If hearings are going to held, they should be done by an impartial or bi-partisan body. Otherwise it is just going to be a one-sided Democrat witchhunt against Bush and Cheney.

    If a proper investigation is done, someone better tell Pelosi, Clinton Reid ,and all the other Dems to start getting their stories together as I am sure we will find out just how many Dems were aware of this years ago and did not speak out against it.

    If these hearings are going to investigate this, then they should force the White House to also release the memos detailing what was learned from the waterboarding on the three terrorists. No doubt we prevented another attacks and possibly saved thousands of US lives.

    Obama and the Dems can't have it both ways. He can't just release what Bush did to make the former administration look bad and not release the outcome that most likely may give some justification to it.

    Jim
    Jacksonville Beach, FL

    May 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  264. Jasmine W. in the European Union

    Somebody should. In the past, U. S. American laws and lawmakers paved the way for law making and court decisions in other countries. Not anymore. Want to get world respect back? Adhere to your own laws.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  265. Allen L Wenger

    Yes, these are war crimes and we cannot just ignore them. The Republicans have been very smart to change the debate. It is now about which Democrats knew we were using torture? were these actions needed? and did they produce good intelligence? These questions are irrelevant, war crimes need to be investigated. Unfortunately, the Republicans will most likely gain in the polls if the Democrats do the right thing. Could our political system really reward the Republicans for breaking international law?

    Mountain Home ID

    May 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  266. Jack - Lancaster, OH

    Mr. Cafferty:

    It is irrelevant that the White House might disagree with the Democrats on investigations. Otherwise this would go in the face of checks and balances and be as bad as the Republican way of doing business as usual. It would be an important precedent and even be somewhat of a future deterrant (nah !) for both parties to engage in ellegal activity, especially that which holds us in contempt by many countries in the world.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  267. guity seghatoleslami

    Dear Jack,

    It is very obvious that a large number of democrats must have participated in this criminal act by knowing and approving it , for the Republicans to be so freehanded in the implimentation OF SUCH CRIMINAL ACTS!!!!

    LET US PROSECUTE THEM ALL!!!
    I AM A DEMOCRAT HOWEVER A CRIMINAL IS A CRIMINAL.

    THANK YOU,

    GUITY

    May 12, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  268. Fred Holt

    Absolutly the Bush Administration has buuied the Real Truth for 8 years and nothing was done about it. Alol the wrong that have ben for starting an Unesssary War and the loss of so many American Troops,not to say the wrongfull killing of innocent Iraq Citizen . Bush and his Administration should be punished just like any other American Citizen had done that Crime.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  269. Krishna

    Yes, Jack. Cheney is daring the country to do just that. Let us settle the issue once and for all. Hope that will make him go away and take Liz and everyone with him. Why was he avoiding public appearances if the country was safe then? He can now come out in the sunshine because the country is safer for all. Biden and Obama can now get out and have a burger. When was the last time he and Bush did that in the last eight years? The country should not get trapped in Dick's paranoi of security.

    Kris,
    CA

    May 12, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  270. Molly Mills

    Hearings would be fine after the war. It would seem very foolish to let the enemy know our procedures during the war. It is all political. Nancy Pelossi and friends should remember Democrats will not always be in power and they could face charges of treason, for giving aid and comfort to the enemy. Should the mastermind of 9/11 be given more consideration than Daniel Pearl? We should learn from Israel.Now the enemy no longer fears us because we can't even duck them in water with a doctor present. They know we are not allowed to hurt them, so they have no reason to tell us anything.Hello next attack, it's coming, and we will have no warning. Thanks to politics.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  271. Kooky in CA

    This is not an administrative or legistlative thing, it's a judicial thing and the DOJ should be investigating this with an independent prosecutor. What about the Republicans that were briefed? How loud did they protest? Law were brokewwn in high places and they criminals have confessed on TV, what else do we need? Get to work.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  272. Purnell, Kankakee, IL.

    All government are corrupt end the end they will try to enforce illegal laws on the people of thier country and other nations, We just keep repeeting the past over and over again, if we continue down this path we will fall just like the Roman nation did in the past!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  273. Richard Green

    Jack,

    The Congress should investigate [House Judiciary Committee]. It's not just a Democrat issue. We are seeing daily evidence of war crimes committed at the highest level of our government. The Congress better investigate or suffer the humiliation of having a smaller, weaker, less important country [with more ethics and morality] do our constitutional duty for us.

    Rich Green
    San Clemente, Ca

    May 12, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  274. ED in RI

    Jack;
    I live in Rhode Island, and Senator Whitehouse is going to lead this investigation; in spite of "talk radio" despondents. I already e-mailed him to confirm my commitment.
    Why should anybody in this country turn a blind eye to the criminal cabball of the BUSH administration; AND, let all the criminal activity be covered over?
    The entire country is out of control/ like Texas, that suffered two Bush terms. In spite of all the troubles; it wouldn't take much time or effort to show the world that we are a people of law. Spain is already prosecuting the torture lawyers " Bushes 6". Let's help them out.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  275. Mango mio

    The Bush administration broke the law. The fact that we have to have a debate about what to do is pathetic. Waterboarding is torture, and torture is illegal in the United States. What else is there to debate?Maybe we should debate slavery, cannibalism, and human sacrifice too. ? Our justice system is for the poor and unconnected, everyone in power gets a get out Jail pass, like our criminal CIA and all the rest, what a joke.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  276. Ralph Spyer chicago Il

    YES: Human rights is the soul of our foreign policy because human rights is the very soul of our sense of nationhood."JIMMY CARTER

    May 12, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  277. dina

    Dina

    I think that congress should investigate the Bush/Cheney administration regarding torture because now I see that Cheney and Karl Rove are saying that it is a Policy issue rather than a crime. These guys are good they know that somewhere over the rainbow someone will here the word policy and believe that it is just the mean old democrats trying to exert revenge rather than getting to the truth.

    ps Who asked the lawyers to justify torture, I mean enhanced interrogations?

    May 12, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  278. Dan - Eustis, florida

    Of course hearings should be held. Torture goes against everything good about us as a Country of principal. If impeachment hearings against President Clinton could be held for a sexual episode, surely
    something as vile as allowed torture must be dealt with. Vice-President Cheney says Waterboarding worked. Then How come it took 83 plus
    sessions to get information. If it worked so well one session would have got the information. It is and was flat wrong! Unlike Dick Cheney I am
    a Vet who resents what he and Bush did to our Country. Let them be Waterboarded.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  279. Sharon: Anchorage, Alaska

    Congress must focus on the current downhill slide our country is on, with interest & inflation barking at the door, which is highest priority. Absolutely NO on hearings, unless they include Nancy Pelosi as one of the persons being investigated (making bi-partisan investigation). Congress wants to focus our attention elsewhere, while serious damage is being done in other areas. They are MASTER magicians.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  280. David

    In a word Jack... YES! I think it's time for all three branches of the government to do their jobs... and to let the truth be told to America. I'm kind of sick of hearing about who knew what and when. The conduct of illegal interogation techniques and their approval for use is what concerns me. This nonsence about whether or not the torture worked or how 'popular' an investigation might be with the public needs to end. The issue is about the rule of LAW... and what our Country stands for.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  281. jacque-oregon

    Jack,
    If the matter is not "out" completely, meaning both parties participation level, it reeks of "cover up" because some deal has been agreed to. Was there participation by both sides, have people been threatened to keep it as quiet as possible while Cheney covers whatever he is covering.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  282. Tom from New Jersey

    YES! If our public officials don't have to obey the law, then why should the rest of us obey the law?

    When Congress investigates these crimes, the first case they should look into is the murder of Manadel al-Jamadi, who was killed while being interrogated by American forces in the Abu Ghraib prison. Specialist Sabrina Harman was later photographed posing with his iced down corpse, and this photo appeared in newspapers around the world.

    Why should underlings like Ms. Harmon take all the flak for this act of barbarism when the people who ordered it get off scot free?

    If Bush and Cheney can get away with murder, then the rest of us should be able to get away with murder too. How can we go around the world preaching to other people how to behave, when we carry on like this?

    May 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  283. Patrick, Lake Stevens, Washington

    Yes they should, Jack. This is part of the transparency Obama talked about during the campaign and Congress needs to be right in step with that personification and follow through with these hearings because America needs to know the details of who help craft these memos and who signed off on them. It should not matter who is implicated in the findings (Republican or Democrat) if the corruption identifies both parties, then heads should roll from all sides. This Pandora box was opened by President Obama and now he needs to stand aside and let justice take place no matter how ugly the findings are.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm |
  284. Nancy on Maui

    There is nothing more important in the history of our nation than to expose every last detail of what happened, and to insist that every person involved, from the lowest Private to the highest offices in the land, deal with the repercussions of their choices. Just following orders is unAmerican. Insisting on integrity is American.

    If this country is to be what We the People say it is, there is nothing more important than this. Every American should be responsible to the world for their actions. That, after all, is what freedom brings. Individual responsibility.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  285. Hank Pihl

    Jack,The answer is simply YES.
    Waterboarding is torture,and is illegal.
    Bush,Cheney,and Condoleezza Rice must be held accountable
    Mc. Cain indicated that waterboarding was torture,and he should know,due to the fact that he was tortured over and over again.
    Prosecute these people and deprive them of sleep,and if it is
    legal waterboard them for a period of time.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:42 pm |
  286. alex bramley

    Moving forward," What a joke "
    Spend more money on an investigation
    That will prove nothing , Will anyone punish Pelosi?
    We have bigger problems than going on a "witch hunt"
    that will show that both parties new what was going on.
    Now all the so called do-gooders are saying ,
    It was not me, and I new nothing about it.
    and thats the Democrats answer to everything.
    God forbid we ever get attacked again,
    I hate to think what the Democrats response
    would be. Surrender? White flag?

    May 12, 2009 at 5:47 pm |
  287. Jerry

    If they investigate Bush and Chaney they will only find out just how stupid both of these jerks really are. Their act of stupidity should be punishable by at least 20 years in prison.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  288. Bruce

    Absolutely. Our credibility to the world is in tatters, and only by investigating and prosecuting everyone involved will we regain any dignity. It is long overdue. The horrors of the past administration must be repudiated without hesitation.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  289. Don in Grand Rapids, Mi

    Let the Democrates hold any hearing that they want. all they are doing is showing real Americans just how hateful they are, they'll put America down and hope to casue the USA to implode, The Dems and you left wing news media want crisis after crisis so that they and you can ruin our Greta Nation!It;s the only way the Dems can hold onto the powere that they have stolen using ACORN and Union support to provide vote that are fraudlant!

    You will have no one to blame for this debical but yourselves!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  290. george charles paree

    Yes I believe they were treasness lied about torcher

    May 12, 2009 at 5:51 pm |
  291. Mari, Salt Lake City, Utah

    Yes, Jack, because if we give Bush/Cheney a "pass" we can bet that another administration will go rogue again!

    We are a Nation of Laws, waterboarding has been outlawed since the 1800's (look it up).

    The United States of America has long been the example of Freedom and Justice, IF we turn a blind-eye to the fact, that Bush sanctioned torture, what's next?

    I say, drag Bush, Rove, Rumsfeld, DICK and the rest of the war criminals in not for "hearings" for a Congressional investigation, with a Special Prosecutor!

    IF Clinton was impeached for "lying about that woman" ! How in heavens name, can we, the People, shrug our shoulders and allow Bush & Co., to get away with.......... TORTURE?!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  292. tim

    Our laws aret meant to be upheld simply whenever it’s convenient. Im surprized you even ask this question. These criminals will never see jail thats for you and me Jack , they get a free pass to be criminals..

    May 12, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  293. Lawrence Abdalla

    THE TORTURE issue has been circulated in blogs long before the Bush years yet now a group of Senators want to give it priority over American citizens who go through injustice in our prisons and priority over American Children who have been tourtured in state custody in child welfare systems. Check the facts, no insurgents died in these high profile camps but I guarantee you will find cases of American kids who died in low profile state custody. ONE FAVOR.... the public needs to know the NAMES of those Senators pursuing this witch hunt and how much tax payer money will be spent on the hearings. Yes we should make it a political issue, especially on election day.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  294. J. Reasnor

    Torture is against the law! We can't set examples when we don't follow them. That's including torture and abuse within all our jails and prisons!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  295. Anna

    Before we start holding hearings, maybe we should define what torture is first. There seems to be some confusion on the subject.

    Orlando, FL

    May 12, 2009 at 5:55 pm |
  296. Tracey

    Let it go, move forward. Bush is out. They didn't stop him from all he was doing illegally when he was IN office, quit wasting my tax money now, after he is gone!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:56 pm |
  297. Purnell, Kankakee, IL.

    Finally the world has seen the every country is currupt as any other, we have walked around for years with our head in the clouds acting as if we stood for what is rigth, but now the truth has come out!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  298. Purnell, Kankakee, IL.

    Put law breaker in jail!

    May 12, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  299. mama28boyz

    Somebody needs to fully investigate and prosecute as necessary; but if the Democrats do it, it will be perceived as just partisan politics. We need to have a standing independent commission in place to take care of situations like this whenever they arise. And they will arise again – and again – and again.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  300. Phil P. in NJ

    Jack, if Bush/Cheney broke the law, then they should be held accountable. No one is above the law. Just ask Former President Nixon.

    May 12, 2009 at 5:58 pm |