Hooray! “Republicans reject Bush’s anti-terror law”


Richard Moore

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Republicans reject Bush's anti-terror law

Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington
Friday September 15, 2006
The Guardian

George Bush suffered a serious rebuff yesterday to his demand to grant the CIA 
and the military a freer hand in the war on terror after Senate Republicans 
moved to block legislation that would allow coercive interrogations of 

The show of defiance came hours after Mr Bush made a rare visit to Capitol Hill 
to drum up support for White House proposals to limit America's commitment to 
the Geneva convention on treatment of prisoners. Four Senate Republicans, 
including John Warner, the chairman of the armed services committee, joined 
Democrats to vote against the proposals setting the stage for a showdown with 
the White House.

The struggle within the Republican party deepened further yesterday when it 
emerged that the former secretary of state and general Colin Powell had also 
repudiated the White House's plans.

In a letter to Senator John McCain - one of three powerful Republicans opposed 
to White House proposals for new legislation on detainees - Mr Powell said it 
would be a mistake to reduce America's commitment to the Geneva convention. "The
world is beginning to doubt the moral basis of our fight against terrorism," he 
wrote. The letter, written on Wednesday, was released by Mr McCain yesterday.

The Senate vote was a setback to White House efforts to bring in legislation 
before November's midterm congressional elections for which Republicans plan to 
campaign as tough on national security.

But Mr Powell added his voice to those of military judges who said the US would 
imperil its own soldiers if it watered down compliance with the Geneva 

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