Former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) says Congress rejected White House request for the authority to eavesdrop on U.S. citizens: "I can state categorically that the subject of warrantless wiretaps of American citizens never came up. I did not and never would have supported giving authority to the president for such wiretaps. I am also confident that the 98 senators who voted in favor of authorization of force against al Qaeda did not believe that they were also voting for warrantless domestic surveillance." [WP, WP]


Congress has turned on Bush. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.): "What you have seen is a Congress, which has been AWOL through intimidation or lack of unity, get off the sidelines and jump in with both feet." [WP, LAT]

Republican lawmakers "largely have themselves to blame for the muddled and haphazard finale of the Congressional session." [NYT]

House and Senate extend the Patriot Act for five weeks, pushing fight into the new year. [WP, NYT, LAT]

Bush approves reduction of U.S. combat forces in Iraq; troop level could fall to 130,000. [WP, USAT]

John Yoo, "a mere deputy assistant attorney general in the legal counsel office," was the main author of controversial legal policies; viewed as an aggressive force among conservative legal scholars. Yoo: "If you're being criticized for what you did and you believe that what you did was right, you shouldn't take it lying down. You should go out and defend yourself." [NYT]

Michael Brown warned Tom Ridge in 2003 that the bureaucracy of the DHS would strangle FEMA's effectiveness: "People became distracted from the mission, because we spent so much time and energy fighting for resources and working on reorganization. It just disintegrated our capacity." [WP, WT]

Supreme Court has shied away from defining the precedent of the eavesdropping program. [NYT]

Administration cites '78 law to defend eavesdropping program. [NYT]

Most Congressional leaders initially supported the eavesdropping program. [NYT]

Republicans "hold" the Senate Intelligence Authorization Bill for the first time in 27 years. [WP]

Congress approves $29b for the Gulf Coast. [WP]

Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) distances himself from Christian group that advocated intelligent design. [WP]

72% of Americans disagree with Pentagon's propaganda campaign in Iraq. [USAT]

Independent writers and researchers are often quietly backed by lobbyists without disclosure. [NYT]

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