Alberto Gonzales, seeking to win Senate confirmation as President Bush's attorney general, declared that any torture by American personnel would be unlawful, according to written responses released on Tuesday to questions by senators.[...]Democrats should voice their concerns and vote agianst Al Gonzales.
The full Senate Judiciary Committee is to consider the nomination on Wednesday. But Democrats are expected to invoke their privilege to obtain an automatic one-week delay.
Regardless, Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, said he expects Gonzales to ultimately be approved by his panel as early as next week and then confirmed by the full Republican-led Senate.
In a brief interview, Specter acknowledged that a number of Democrats have voiced concerns, but predicted the nominee would end up with "solid support."
At the confirmation hearing, Durbin, a member of the Judiciary Committee, asked Gonzales if U.S. personnel could legally engage in torture under "any circumstances."
Gonzales denounced torture, but deferred providing a direct answer to this question until given time to research it.
In his written response, Gonzales wrote, "Conduct amounting to torture that occurs 'outside the United States'...would violate the federal criminal prohibition against torture..."
He added, "Conduct amounting to torture that did not occur 'outside the United States' would violate various other state or federal laws."
Now back to the intra-party feuding. This is my final thing as disgusted as I am. I said in my first post after Jerry Lundergan was named as the state chairman how I felt and that I've accepted it as fact. We have to rebuild from scratch and that includes starting a Kentucky Democratic Party blog (now watch all those searching for a "Kentucky Democratic Party blog" on Google to come here). No matter what, I am still opposed to him as chairman, citing the ethics violation. While I cannot exactly promise future criticism, I will try my best not to but this is America.
I still join the following people as being disappointed with Jerry Lundergan being named state chairman on Saturday:
Mary Lou Marzian
Last Sane Man
Ben at BlueGrass Roots
From the Courier Journal editorial page
And if there's a phalanx of the state's most prominent elected Democrats who have a problem with Mr. Lundergan, find a way around them, too.People will be shocked to read this, but I'd rather see former Vermont Governor Howard Dean as state party chair of Kentucky. That's a sad thing. Prominent Democrats were disappointed. I am too, and it's not going away anytime soon.
Ignore the fact that U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler (arguably the party's most important current standard-bearer) successfully fought to block Mr. Lundergan's appointment last year. Ignore the opposition, this year, from state Speaker Jody Richards, Auditor Crit Luallen and Treasurer Jonathan Miller.
And if you still have an urban and suburban base that's moderate to liberal on social issues, ignore them, too. Have the new chairman immediately (1) declare his opposition to abortion and (2) appeal to the voters in Western Kentucky who responded so warmly to the GOP's homophobic smear of Daniel Mongiardo, the 2004 Democratic nominee for the U.S. Senate.