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On the September 28 edition of CNN's The Situation Room, host Wolf Blitzer described the Senate's passage of a controversial Republican-backed bill governing the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of terrorism suspects as a "a critical victory for President Bush in the war on terror." But while Congress' approval clearly represents a victory for Bush, numerous Democratic opponents of the bill explicitly disputed the claim that it makes the country safer.
For instance, Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) predicted the bill would undermine U.S. efforts to fight terrorism. He said, "When we're sloppy and cut corners, we are undermining those very virtues of America that will lead us to success in winning this war." Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) pointed out that military lawyers have expressed concern about the effect of the legislation on the future treatment of captured U.S. soldiers: "We must remember what the Army Judge Advocate General told me at a Judiciary Committee hearing this summer: that the United States should set an example for the world, and that we must carefully consider the effect on the way our own soldiers will be treated." And Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) asserted that, by approving the bill, "[W]e allow the terrorists to win by doing to ourselves what they could never do and abandon the principles for which so many Americans today and through our history have fought and sacrificed."
From the September 28 edition of CNN's The Situation Room:
BLITZER: Just moments ago, a critical victory for President Bush in the war on terror. The U.S. Senate gave what amounts to final approval of a bill setting rules for the interrogation and the trial of terror suspects. It's expected to head to Mr. Bush's desk for his signature in the next few days, after he personally lobbied lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Also visible on the Hill today, new sniping over which party can better protect Americans from terrorists.