"Dedicated to exposing the lies and impeachable offenses of George W. Bush"

The Pro Torture President
Star Tribune/Three WH Press Briefings
November 6, 2005

[Note: We begin with a few quotes from Bush's press secretary. Scott McClellan repeatedly says the US and Bush do not support torture and Bush has never authorized torture. This is followed by an article in which the White House threatens to veto anti torture legislation passed by the Senate 90-0. At a minimum this is an example of the Bush White House lying to our faces.

Press Briefing: March 6, 2004

MR. McCLELLAN: David, as we wage this war on terrorism, it's important that we gather intelligence. And we will work to do that to prevent an attack from happening in the first place. But the President expects that as we do that, that it is consistent with our laws and consistent with our treaty obligations.

He does not condone torture and he has never authorized the use of torture. The President has made that very clear in the past and he continues to hold that view, because we are a nation of certain laws and certain values. And torture is not consistent with our values and with our laws. And --

Q So his position is a moral position? Or does he, in addition to that, believe that torture is not effective, just doesn't work?

MR. McCLELLAN: He has spoken out against torture. The United States is a leader when it comes to --

Q Does he think it works?

MR. McCLELLAN: -- confronting torture and speaking out against torture. And he does not condone it. Nor does he authorize torture. Let me be very clear on that.

Q You're not being clear about my question -- does he think it works?

MR. McCLELLAN: In terms of where, he spoke out on it last year, he spoke out on it in other circumstances prior to that when he was asked about this very issue.

Q -- had he seen any of the memos --

Q I'm asking a specific question: Does he think it's effective, ever?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you're getting into hypothetical situations. He does not condone torture. Let me repeat --

Q I don't think anybody that heard that question thought it was hypothetical.

MR. McCLELLAN: -- he would never authorize the use of torture.

Q Would never? Has never, or would never?

MR. McCLELLAN: He has never, and he has no intention of ever authorizing the use of torture.


Press Briefing: Jan. 10, 2005

Q And then on a different subject, does this administration transfer detainees or prisoners in the war on terror to third countries in order to have them interrogated with means that would be against this country's law -- in order to have them tortured?

MR. McCLELLAN: First of all, I think the President has made our view very clear when it comes to torture. The President does not condone torture, and he would never authorize the use of torture. So I think it --

Q That's not what I asked, though.

MR. McCLELLAN: Understood. So I think I want to make that very clear right off the top. Our policy is to adhere to our laws and our treaty obligations. There are very clear laws in the United States regarding torture, and there are clear laws at the international level regarding torture. And our policy is to adhere to that. So I make that very clear.

In terms of intelligence or national security matters, I'm not in a position to get into commenting -- to get into discussing those. Those are questions you might want to direct to the appropriate agencies. But our policy is very clear, and that's what the President expects to be followed.

Q Right, but you can't tell me whether or not there are detainees that have been transferred to third countries and then tortured, with the acquiescence of the United States?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, I made our view very clear. And in terms of torture, we do not condone torture and the President has never authorized torture -- nor would he.


Press Briefing: March 17, 2005

Q So those people are lying?

MR. McCLELLAN: The President has made it very clear that we do not condone torture. He's made it very clear to the government that we do not torture. And the President does not believe we should export torture.

Q Yes. When you get your assurances, does that mean he believes it's not happening?

MR. McCLELLAN: We believe in adhering to our laws and our treaty obligations. That's the way the President has always acted. And he's made it clear to everybody throughout government that we do not torture. And that applies across the board. And as we carry out the war on terrorism, and seek to prevent attacks from happening, we must adhere to those laws, and we must adhere to those treaty obligations and we must adhere to -- we must adhere to our values.


GOP senator calls opposition to torture 'a terrible mistake'
Star Tribune
November 6, 2005
Douglass K. Daniel, Associated Press

WASHINGTON — A leading Republican senator said today that the Bush administration is making "a terrible mistake'' in opposing a congressional ban on torture and other inhuman treatment of prisoners in U.S. custody.

Sen. Chuck Hagel, considered a potential presidential candidate in 2008, said many Republican senators support the ban proposed by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War.

The ban was approved by a 90-9 vote last month in the Senate and added to a defense spending bill. The White House has threatened a veto, but the fate of the proposal depends on House-Senate negotiations that will reconcile different versions of the spending measure. The House's does not include the ban.

Vice President Dick Cheney has lobbied Republican senators to allow an exemption for those held by the CIA if preventing an attack is at stake.

"I think the administration is making a terrible mistake in opposing John McCain's amendment on detainees and torture," Hagel, R-Neb., said on "This Week" on ABC. "Why in the world they're doing that, I don't know."

McCain, citing the Senate vote as well as support from the public and from former Secretary of State Colin Powell and others with government service, said he will push the issue with the White House "as far as necessary."

"We need to get this issue behind us," McCain said on "Fox News Sunday." "Our image in the world is suffering very badly, and one of the reasons for it is the perception that we abuse people that we take captive."

Mistreatment of prisoners at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison and allegations of mistreatment at the U.S.-run camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, have drawn withering criticism from around the world. Human rights organizations also contend that the United States sends detainees to countries that it knows will use torture to try to extract intelligence information.

When the White House failed to kill the anti-torture provision while it was pending in the Senate, it began arguing for an exemption in cases of "clandestine counterterrorism operations conducted abroad, with respect to terrorists who are not citizens of the United States."

The president would have to approve the exemption, according to the administration proposal, and any activity would have to be consistent with the Constitution, federal law and U.S. treaty obligations.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said he supports the vice president's efforts to gain a CIA exemption. While contending that the administration opposes torture, Hatch said, "They're going to everything in their power to make sure that our citizens in the United States of America are protected."

Appearing with Hatch on CBS's "Face the Nation," Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of prisoners "is not what America is all about. Those aren't the values that we're fighting for."

What a mess! Bush has two options; tell the truth or lie.