Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Senatorial Perjury?

Over at Slate, Emily Bazelon points out, quite convincingly, that Senators Lindsey Graham and John Kyl, both Republicans, inserted into the congressional record of the debate over the Detainee Treatment Act, language that would seem to make it clear that all senators understood that it meant that the Supreme Court would have no authority to review the current detainee case at hand, Hamdan v. Rumsfeld. Though Graham and Kyl had the discussion, it apparently wasn't on the Senate floor, as a C-Span tape proves, and the discussion was inserted into the record after the bill had passed.

The two Senators filed a brief with the Supreme Court and they claim that they had the conversation, in live debate on the Senate floor before ther bill had passed.

Now, if it's proven that this claim is false, shouldn't there be consequences. The senators know darned well whether or not they had their discussion added to the record after the fact. Have they lied to the Supreme Court? Isn't it some sort of crime to do so? Sounds like a job for an ethics committee, at the very least. Or, the FBI.


At 11:41 AM , Blogger Jon E. said...

My hunch is that amicus briefs aren't submitted under oath and that their representations of fact are therefore not subject to charges of perjury (but I ain't no JD). But, yeah, if deliberately lying to the Supreme Court isn't an ethics violation, it surely should be. I've got Durbin and Obama as Senators, so their staffs wlll at least have to feign polite sympathy when I write my indignant e-mails.

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