Democratic Senator and Presidential candidate Chris Dodd did something extraordinary today. He kept his word.
Dodd promised to use every means necessary, including filibuster, to prevent any FISA bill that included retroactive amnesty (for telecom companies that broke the law because the spooks asked nicely) from getting through the Senate. And when push came to shove today, he made sure he was at the Capitol instead of campaigning in Iowa, and started wading through all the procedural steps that Senators can't be bothered with anymore. Finally convinced that Dodd was as good as his word, Senate majority leader Harry Reid delayed the bill until January. A few other Senators were supportive, but this was Dodd's victory.
However, you'd never know it from reading the infotainment that passes for mainstream news these days. Check out CNN or anything else that Google News links to, and see how far down you have to read to see Dodd's name. It's depressing.
Mind you, I'm not a Dodd supporter. There are plenty of issues where Senator Dodd and I could have a knock-down-drag-out discussion. But dammit, the man kept his word, and all I can say is, "Thank you."
PS: Edward Kennedy was one of Dodd's supporters, and the man can still turn a phrase: "The President has said that American lives will be sacrificed if Congress does not change FISA. But he has also said that he will veto any FISA bill that does not grant retro-active immunity. No immunity, no FISA bill. So if we take the President at his word, he's willing to let Americans die to protect the phone companies."