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THE NEW CONGRESS & JFK RECORDS – A Quick Analysis.

While the full repercussions of the mid-term US elections have yet to shake out, we know enough to make some confident predictions, especially as to how it will affect JFK assassination research.

Under the rules of the US Congress, the Democrats will take over the role of majority party, commanding the Speaker of the House, garnering more committee appointments and most importantly, taking over committee chairmanships, assuming the powers of scheduling the House agenda, the ability to call hearings and to the power to begin investigations.

There will be hearings and there will be investigations, just as there were during and after the Watergate era, which sparked the Pike and Church Committees, the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) and the kind of investigative oversight we'd like to see of the Assassinations Records Review Board (ARRB).

Basically, there are two types of Congressional Committee hearings – Oversight and Investigative. When things are running smoothly and all appears honky-dory, oversight hearings have responsible agency directors answer pre-prepared softball questions. Investigative committees on the other hand, use their subpoena power to compel the sworn testimony of unwilling witnesses and obtain otherwise inaccessible records that are leaked to the press, which sometimes leads to scandals and criminal investigations and always good theater.

There will be hearings and there will be investigations, though the issues leadership considers most important will take priority, and after years playing the subservient minority role, the new committee chairman no longer have to politely request the chairman hold a hearing on an important issue, now he can just do it on his own. The Democrats first fury will probably be unleashed on partisan issues ( ie. Haliburton contracts; Iraq & WMD; military prison abuses; etc.), but they'll eventually get around to dealing with issues we are concerned with – the MLK Act, oversight and enforcement of JFK Act, destruction of records and the Emmett Till Bill.

While the first madam Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D. Calf.) makes Republicans shutter, the new committee chairman will frighten them, especially Rep. John Conyers (D. Mich.) as the new chairman of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, also participated in the preliminary hearings before the enactment of the JFK Act, and Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D. Calf.), former minority leader of the Government Reform Committee, which includes oversight of important agencies and departments.

For years Conyers had to write polite letters to the committee chairman to request hearings on special issues; now he can call hearings on his own, and he's going to do it.

Galvanized by Oliver Stone's film JFK, the American public focused much of its wrath on HSCA member Rep. Louis Stokes, who recruited Arlen Spector in the Senate to draft the JFK Act to release the assassination records, as vetted by the ARRB.

Nearly fifteen years since the passage of the JFK Act, most though not all of the HSCA records have been released, but the records that remain sealed are stubbornly so, with little relief from the courts.

What needs to be done now is for a series of open Congressional Briefings be held in Congress on the narrow but significant issue of government compliance, or lack of compliance with the JFK Act, and review of the need for enforcement procedures and harsher penalties for failure to abide by the JFK Act and FIOA requests and destruction of records.

This briefing, if carried by C-SPAN and covered by mainstream media, should lead to formal Congressional hearings in the appropriate committee, that will begin as traditional oversight hearings – but could be easily diverted to an investigative committee, though what would be investigated would be limited to the records, rather than to the assassination itself.

Rep. Conyers could find reason for his Judicial Committee to hold such hearings, though they are sitting on Kuchnick's impeachment motion and talk but don't put out. It's more likely Congressional hearings will be held by the committee for oversight of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), or the Government Reform Committee, whose former minority leader Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D. Calf.) is a champion of open government. Waxman's Committee issued the Report: Secrecy in the Bush Administration and Administration Oversight and Open Government. [see: http://reform.democrats.house.gov/story ].

When the new Congress convened in January, the record is swept clean and all previous bills not acted on must be reintroduced, which includes both the Restore Open Records Act (RORA) of 2002 [hr 5073] and the MLK Act of 2006, and any additional bills to be considered. Once introduced, co-sponsors sign on and it is referred to a sub-committee, that can either table the bill or hold hearings and make a recommendation on it. Or a full committee could hold hearings, especially if it's a politically charged issue and covered by CSPAN.

Some positive aspects of RORA is the restoration of the Presumption of Disclosure (informally established by the ARRB), it overturns the Ashcroft and Card Memos that encouraged agencies to ignore FOIA requests, and bolsters citizen action by re-compensating legal fees for successful cases against the government.

The most significant thing that will happen when Congressional Hearings on the JFK Act finally take place will be the taking of new testimony under oath, which will establish new evidence that we haven't had before.

How far the Congressional hearings will go, like the Congressional hearings of the 70s, depends on how much pressure the American public puts on its newly elected officials to pursue a new and open government.

William Kelly (bkjfk3@yahoo.com)

I just wanted to bring this back, having read Dale Myers' Blog saying that Congressional oversight hearings of JFK Act will be held because Charles Saunders is calling for it.

What's the date of the beginning of this thread?

And also see: Kelly letter to Waxman requesting oversight hearings of JFK Act and Jim Lesar's letter to Waxman and Lieberman calling for oversight hearings on JFK Act.

Whose calling the shots here?

I just want to establish that we've been talking about and calling for Waxman oversight of JFK Act at least since this thread opened in November 2006.

I'm glad to see that Mr. Saudners has seen the light. Now let's convince Waxman.

BK

Edited by William Kelly
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THE NEW CONGRESS & JFK RECORDS – A Quick Analysis.

While the full repercussions of the mid-term US elections have yet to shake out, we know enough to make some confident predictions, especially as to how it will affect JFK assassination research.

Under the rules of the US Congress, the Democrats will take over the role of majority party, commanding the Speaker of the House, garnering more committee appointments and most importantly, taking over committee chairmanships, assuming the powers of scheduling the House agenda, the ability to call hearings and to the power to begin investigations.

There will be hearings and there will be investigations, just as there were during and after the Watergate era, which sparked the Pike and Church Committees, the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) and the kind of investigative oversight we’d like to see of the Assassinations Records Review Board (ARRB).

Basically, there are two types of Congressional Committee hearings – Oversight and Investigative. When things are running smoothly and all appears honky-dory, oversight hearings have responsible agency directors answer pre-prepared softball questions. Investigative committees on the other hand, use their subpoena power to compel the sworn testimony of unwilling witnesses and obtain otherwise inaccessible records that are leaked to the press, which sometimes leads to scandals and criminal investigations and always good theater.

There will be hearings and there will be investigations, though the issues leadership considers most important will take priority, and after years playing the subservient minority role, the new committee chairman no longer have to politely request the chairman hold a hearing on an important issue, now he can just do it on his own. The Democrats first fury will probably be unleashed on partisan issues ( ie. Haliburton contracts; Iraq & WMD; military prison abuses; etc.), but they’ll eventually get around to dealing with issues we are concerned with – the MLK Act, oversight and enforcement of JFK Act, destruction of records and the Emmett Till Bill.

While the first madam Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D. Calf.) makes Republicans shutter, the new committee chairman will frighten them, especially Rep. John Conyers (D. Mich.) as the new chairman of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D. Calf.), former minority leader of the Government Reform Committee, which includes oversight of important agencies and departments.

For years Conyers had to write polite letters to the committee chairman to request hearings on special issues; now he can call hearings on his own, and he’s going to do it.

The former 3rd chairman of the HSCA (after Downing retired and Gonzalez melted), Conyers steered the contentious committee investigations of the JFK and MLK assassinations, concluding there was evidence of conspiracy in both cases, then locked away their records for 50 years.

Galvanized by Oliver Stone’s film JFK, the American public focused much of its wrath on Conyers, who recruited Arlen Spector in the Senate to draft the JFK Act to release the assassination records, as vetted by the ARRB.

Nearly fifteen years since the passage of the JFK Act, most though not all of the HSCA records have been released, but the records that remain sealed are stubbornly so, with little relief from the courts.

What needs to be done now is for a series of open Congressional Briefings be held in Congress on the narrow but significant issue of government compliance, or lack of compliance with the JFK Act, and review of the need for enforcement procedures and harsher penalties for failure to abide by the JFK Act and FIOA requests and destruction of records.

This briefing, if carried by C-SPAN and covered by mainstream media, should lead to formal Congressional hearings in the appropriate committee, that will begin as traditional oversight hearings – but could be easily diverted to an investigative committee, though what would be investigated would be limited to the records, rather than to the assassination itself.

Conyers could find reason for his Judicial Committee to hold such hearings, though more likely it will be held by the committee for oversight of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), or the Government Reform Committee, whose former minority leader Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D. Calf.) is a champion of open government. Waxman’s Committee issued the Report: Secrecy in the Bush Administration and Administration Oversight and Open Government. [see: http://reform.democrats.house.gov/story ].

When the new Congress convenes in January, the record is swept clean and all previous bills not acted on must be reintroduced, which includes both the Restore Open Records Act (RORA) of 2002 [hr 5073] and the MLK Act of 2006, and any additional bills to be considered. Once introduced, co-sponsors sign on and it is referred to a sub-committee, that can either table the bill or hold hearings and make a recommendation on it. Or a full committee could hold hearings, especially if it’s a politically charged issue and covered by CSPAN.

Some positive aspects of RORA is the restoration of the Presumption of Disclosure (informally established by the ARRB), it overturns the Ashcroft and Card Memos that encouraged agencies to ignore FOIA requests, and bolsters citizen action by re-compensating legal fees for successful cases against the government.

The most significant thing that will happen when Congressional Hearings on the JFK Act finally take place will be the taking of new testimony under oath, which will establish new evidence that we haven’t had before.

How far the Congressional hearings will go, like the Congressional hearings of the 70s, depends on how much pressure the American public puts on its newly elected officials to pursue a new and open government.

William Kelly (bkjfk3@yahoo.com)

Great post William, very detailed. Conyers, IMO, is one of the few pols who has some backbone and integrity. Just the right man for the Judiciary Committee. (Waxman is also better than average.) Intriguing possibilities...

Could you please elaborate on the statement that "Conyers steered the contentious committee investigations of the JFK and MLK assassinations,...then locked away their records for 50 years."

Rep Conyers alone didn't have the power to unilaterally decide to lock away the records did he? How was that decision arrived at? It sorta sounds like he was one of those hiding the truth, but I just don't think he's that kind of pol. Am I misinterpreting that? Obviously if he was the one to lock records away and he's someone who could help get them released, that'd be dicey.

Thanks.

Great article Bill. Let us hope you are right and the Democrats get control over the Senate. At the moment it seems too close to call.

There will be a long battle in Virginia. Possibly weeks. And Allen is clearly a dirty fighter (and all around thug).

Edited by Myra Bronstein
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Myra: ...Could you please elaborate on the statement that "Conyers steered the contentious committee investigations of the JFK and MLK assassinations,...then locked away their records for 50 years."

Rep Conyers alone didn't have the power to unilaterally decide to lock away the records did he? How was that decision arrived at? It sorta sounds like he was one of those hiding the truth, but I just don't think he's that kind of pol. Am I misinterpreting that? Obviously if he was the one to lock records away and he's someone who could help get them released, that'd be dicey.

Hi Myra,

When Congress passed the Freedom of Information Act, it required all agencies of government to comply with the law Except Congress, exempting itself, keeping Rule 36, which requires that all Congressional Records be sealed for 50 years. When I asked an administrator at NARA why 50 years, why not 35 or 70, he said that 50 years was the amount of time it was estimated that the people mentioned in the records would be dead.

At one of the last meetings of the Warren Commission they discussed what to do with the sworn testimony, documents and exhibits that served as the basis for the Report. Allen Dulles wanted it all sealed, but some of the other Commissioners argued for its release, and Dulles relented, saying, "Go ahead and publish it, nobody will read it anyway."

When the HSCA concluded its work by issuing its Report, they too released some records as suplemental volumes, but most of the records were declared "Congressional Records" and thus sealed for 50 years. They could have released more, but intentionally didn't, with the 2nd Chief Counsel G. Robert Blakey saying, "I'll rest on the judgement of histrians in 50 years."

The early lobby efforts by researchers (Committee for an Open Archive COA) targeted the HSCA records, and at first, petitions were circulated calling for the suspension of Rule 36 and the opening of all Congressional records, including the HSCA records. Just as the movie Executive Action called attention to the suspicious deaths in a trailer at the end of the movie, Stone agreed to make note of the fact that the HSCA records were sealed at the end of his movie, which sparked the public outcry to "free the files."

While every Congressman heard from their constituents wanting to know why the JFK assassination investigation records were sealed from the public for 50 years, they turned to the former Committee Chairman for the answer and Conyers took most of the heat. Instead of opening up Congressional records however, Conyers got together with Specter and a few others and took the heat off Congress by addressing the JFK Act to all government agencies and limiting it to the JFK Assassination records. This of course, kept the HSCA MLK Assassination investigation records sealed, and continued exempting Congressional records from the FOIA.

Conyers is a black caucus congressman from urban Michigan who can wheel and deal with Arlen Specter, and continue to secret the MLK and other Congressional records that should be open to the public. But if there is going to be hearings and an effort to free the remaining records, Conyers MUST support it. As the former HSCA chairman his cosponsor ship if any bill to release records is manditory for whatever happens.

With the loss of Cynthia McKinney, we lost our biggest supporter and base of operations in Congress. With the new Democratic Congress coming in, we will have to identify some new sympathetic Congressman who will cosponsor and submit legislation, support our Congressional briefings and call on committee chairman for public hearings on open records issues.

In the last Congress we had Zero chance of convincing a Committee chairman to hold oversight hearings on compliance with the JFK Act, while now its not a matter of if but when it will happen. The pressure, however, still must be applied by the public.

Conyers is a good guy, who now has the hammer, but we can't depend on him.

BK

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :)

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :)

The strange American system of government / elections is totally different than a Parlimentary one, as you have - and most Europeans. It could be EVERY senator and EVERY house member a Green and still Bush is President until the next Presidential elections OR IMPEACHMENT!......it is a winner take all system for each separate race.

Although there is reason for American's to celebrate [an end to a virtual Republican monopoly on the political process] in one sense the midterm's will be remniscent of the 2000 and 2004 elections [ie Florida and Ohio respectively] as the news media as of 7:30 CST is predicting that key Senate races in Montana and Virginia will not be known as late as Mid December, as there will be recounts and lawsuits [don't hold your breath].

As far as the impact on JFK Records go, Bill Kelly is absolutely correct; why is that so? Because stripping the facade of integrity re "truth about official history" is, for all practical purposes "a national security issue" [when is a non-truth the truth} translated into the dynamics of the real world "revelations of what REALLY went down in Dealey Plaza" would impact [validate?] the rest of the world's [ie our enemies radical Islam, leftist government's -Ortega, Chavez et al] perception of the U.S., [commonly known as the fact's of life.]

Final Thought: While the Republican politicians in the United States rant and rave about Islamic "fascism," American's with inquiring and illuminated minds realize [with the European's] that the existence of Western fascism is the "best kept secret" in America. As in P-2, [see Italy] a network that is far from dead

The Ultimate irony is that those who "shoot President's out of office in coup d'etat's and change the course of history" and then bury their crimes in a maze, have no conscience; it never end's unless Democracy in it's purest form brings the darkness to light. Unfortunately, that has never happened in America. The question is...Will it ever?

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :)

The strange American system of government / elections is totally different than a Parlimentary one, as you have - and most Europeans. It could be EVERY senator and EVERY house member a Green and still Bush is President until the next Presidential elections OR IMPEACHMENT!......it is a winner take all system for each separate race.

Although there is reason for American's to celebrate [an end to a virtual Republican monopoly on the political process] in one sense the midterm's will be remniscent of the 2000 and 2004 elections [ie Florida and Ohio respectively] as the news media as of 7:30 CST is predicting that key Senate races in Montana and Virginia will not be known as late as Mid December, as there will be recounts and lawsuits [don't hold your breath].

As far as the impact on JFK Records go, Bill Kelly is absolutely correct; why is that so? Because stripping the facade of integrity re "truth about official history" is, for all practical purposes "a national security issue" [when is a non-truth the truth} translated into the dynamics of the real world "revelations of what REALLY went down in Dealey Plaza" would impact [validate?] the rest of the world's [ie our enemies radical Islam, leftist government's -Ortega, Chavez et al] perception of the U.S., [commonly known as the fact's of life.]

Final Thought: While the Republican politicians in the United States rant and rave about Islamic "fascism," American's with inquiring and illuminated minds realize [with the European's] that the existence of Western fascism is the "best kept secret" in America. As in P-2, [see Italy] a network that is far from dead

The Ultimate irony is that those who "shoot President's out of office in coup d'etat's and change the course of history" and then bury their crimes in a maze, have no conscience; it never end's unless Democracy in it's purest form brings the darkness to light. Unfortunately, that has never happened in America. The question is...Will it ever?

Edited by Robert Howard
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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :)

The strange American system of government / elections is totally different than a Parlimentary one, as you have - and most Europeans. It could be EVERY senator and EVERY house member a Green and still Bush is President until the next Presidential elections OR IMPEACHMENT!......it is a winner take all system for each separate race.

Thanks for the explanation. Still seems very strange to me though being used to a Parliamentary system :) . Seems very odd to me how then the head of the country can not be in the same party that has control of the parliament.

But it is great fun seeing Bush and the rest get hammered! :D I just heard that Dick Cheney resigned....

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :ph34r:

The strange American system of government / elections is totally different than a Parlimentary one, as you have - and most Europeans. It could be EVERY senator and EVERY house member a Green and still Bush is President until the next Presidential elections OR IMPEACHMENT!......it is a winner take all system for each separate race.

Thanks for the explanation. Still seems very strange to me though being used to a Parliamentary system :ice . Seems very odd to me how then the head of the country can not be in the same party that has control of the parliament.

But it is great fun seeing Bush and the rest get hammered! :D I just heard that Dick Cheney resigned....

Not Cheney - Rumsfeld. Officially it was a resignation - but I'd bet London to a brick that his replacement (former CIA head under Bush, Sr - Robert Gates) already had his furniture picked out weeks before the election.

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :ph34r:

The strange American system of government / elections is totally different than a Parlimentary one, as you have - and most Europeans. It could be EVERY senator and EVERY house member a Green and still Bush is President until the next Presidential elections OR IMPEACHMENT!......it is a winner take all system for each separate race.

Thanks for the explanation. Still seems very strange to me though being used to a Parliamentary system :ice . Seems very odd to me how then the head of the country can not be in the same party that has control of the parliament.

But it is great fun seeing Bush and the rest get hammered! :D I just heard that Dick Cheney resigned....

Not Cheney - Rumsfeld. Officially it was a resignation - but I'd bet London to a brick that his replacement (former CIA head under Bush, Sr - Robert Gates) already had his furniture picked out weeks before the election.

Yes, I just realised my mistake :D I don't know why on earth I got those two muddled up - I must be having a 'Bush brain' today....

I wonder if anyone else will go?

On another note, I liked your expression 'I'd bet London to a brick', never heard that one before! Is it an Aussie saying?

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Myra: ...Could you please elaborate on the statement that "Conyers steered the contentious committee investigations of the JFK and MLK assassinations,...then locked away their records for 50 years."

Rep Conyers alone didn't have the power to unilaterally decide to lock away the records did he? How was that decision arrived at? It sorta sounds like he was one of those hiding the truth, but I just don't think he's that kind of pol. Am I misinterpreting that? Obviously if he was the one to lock records away and he's someone who could help get them released, that'd be dicey.

Hi Myra,

When Congress passed the Freedom of Information Act, it required all agencies of government to comply with the law Except Congress, exempting itself, keeping Rule 36, which requires that all Congressional Records be sealed for 50 years. When I asked an administrator at NARA why 50 years, why not 35 or 70, he said that 50 years was the amount of time it was estimated that the people mentioned in the records would be dead.

At one of the last meetings of the Warren Commission they discussed what to do with the sworn testimony, documents and exhibits that served as the basis for the Report. Allen Dulles wanted it all sealed, but some of the other Commissioners argued for its release, and Dulles relented, saying, "Go ahead and publish it, nobody will read it anyway."

When the HSCA concluded its work by issuing its Report, they too released some records as suplemental volumes, but most of the records were declared "Congressional Records" and thus sealed for 50 years. They could have released more, but intentionally didn't, with the 2nd Chief Counsel G. Robert Blakey saying, "I'll rest on the judgement of histrians in 50 years."

The early lobby efforts by researchers (Committee for an Open Archive COA) targeted the HSCA records, and at first, petitions were circulated calling for the suspension of Rule 36 and the opening of all Congressional records, including the HSCA records. Just as the movie Executive Action called attention to the suspicious deaths in a trailer at the end of the movie, Stone agreed to make note of the fact that the HSCA records were sealed at the end of his movie, which sparked the public outcry to "free the files."

While every Congressman heard from their constituents wanting to know why the JFK assassination investigation records were sealed from the public for 50 years, they turned to the former Committee Chairman for the answer and Conyers took most of the heat. Instead of opening up Congressional records however, Conyers got together with Specter and a few others and took the heat off Congress by addressing the JFK Act to all government agencies and limiting it to the JFK Assassination records. This of course, kept the HSCA MLK Assassination investigation records sealed, and continued exempting Congressional records from the FOIA.

Conyers is a black caucus congressman from urban Michigan who can wheel and deal with Arlen Specter, and continue to secret the MLK and other Congressional records that should be open to the public. But if there is going to be hearings and an effort to free the remaining records, Conyers MUST support it. As the former HSCA chairman his cosponsor ship if any bill to release records is manditory for whatever happens.

With the loss of Cynthia McKinney, we lost our biggest supporter and base of operations in Congress. With the new Democratic Congress coming in, we will have to identify some new sympathetic Congressman who will cosponsor and submit legislation, support our Congressional briefings and call on committee chairman for public hearings on open records issues.

In the last Congress we had Zero chance of convincing a Committee chairman to hold oversight hearings on compliance with the JFK Act, while now its not a matter of if but when it will happen. The pressure, however, still must be applied by the public.

Conyers is a good guy, who now has the hammer, but we can't depend on him.

BK

'Kay. Well...thank you for the explanation.

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Ok, sorry if this is a really thick question but the US system does confuse me a little. How come if people are voting for their representatives that this isn't a general election? When there is a general election here we vote for who we want to be our political representative in parliament (well the house of commons anyway) and then the party with most MP's returned wins.

So then I don't get how if the democrats win the senate etc can Bush still be president?

I'm probably not understanding something obvious somewhere.... :ph34r:

Because the American system of government is run on the doctrine of the separation of powers.

That is each branch of the government is independant and acts as a check on the others. There is the Executive branch headed by the president, the Legislative, made up of the Senate and the House of Representatives and the Judiciary headed by the Supreme Court. The Founding Fathers were mindful of preventing a president/emperor from developing, so these checks and balances were instituted.

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The President is directly elected every four years in a national election.

In parliamentary governments the Prime Minister only emerges from the majority party in the house..........

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Report on the BBC website:

The leading US news agency has called the final undecided Senate seat for the Democrats, which would give them control of the chamber. The Associated Press (AP) news agency declared Democrat Jim Webb the winner in the state of Virginia by 7,236 votes over Republican incumbent George Allen.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/6131122.stm

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Thanks to those who have tried to explain the US form of constitutional government to the uninitiated.

The biggest crack in the US Constitution is the VP assumption of power upon the death of the President, which has led to a number of changes in government that were constitutionally legal but still deathly violent coups.

My original analysis is strictly limited to the House of Representatives - though the assumption of majority party now holds true for the Senate as well. Arlen Spector was the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which holds the power of approval of Court Judges. Now the senior Democrat will take that post.

As explained, of the three branches of government, Executive, Legislative and Judicial, the Warren Commission and the ARRB were Executive branch organizatons, while the HSCA was a Legislative, Congressional Committee.

While there will be some action in Congress, as I outlined, with hearings and investigations, possibly on the compliance with the JFK Act and/or MLK Act/Restore Open Government Act, and such hearings will place new sworn testimony into evidence, we are also planning on utilizing legal avenues under the Judicial branch of government - the Grand Jury Project.

Under the Grand Jury Project thread in the Controversial Issues in History - JFK Assassination Seminars section, I have posted the wording of the JFK Grand Jury Petition we will be submitting in late November to Richard B. Roper, the US Attorney for the North Texas Federal District Court.

The first two posts under that Seminar are basic background briefings on the use of Grand Juries to investigate crimes, the third post is the actual petition, as it is currently worded.

Attached to the Petition will be lists of exhibits, evidence and living witnesses and suggested questions.

Those interested in helping to formulate these lists of exhibits, evidence and witnesses should read the background info on Grand Juries and sign on to the Seminar.

In addition, we will be preparing a JFK Mock Grand Jury that will simulate what the real jury would/should do and the types of exhibits, evidence and witnesses that should/will be called to testify before it.

I noticed that only a few people have bothered to read the JFK Grand Jury Seminar info, but if you intend to participate in lining up the attachments for the petition or be a part of the JFK Mock Grand Jury, it will help if you read the basic background information, post some comments and ask any questions as to the procedures that we must use.

Comments on the JFK Grand Jury Petition should be posted under that Seminar thread, while leaving this one open to info on the new Congressional Committee efforts.

Bill Kelly

bkjfk3@yahoo.com

Federal Grand Jury Petition (Request) to evaluate the existing evidence and investigate the homicide of John F. Kennedy, the attempted murder of John B. Connally, the wounding of James Tague and the murders of J. D. Tippit and Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas, Texas in Nov. 1963.

To: Richard B. Roper, U.S. Attorney for Federal District of North Texas, Earle Cabell Federal Building, 1100 Commerce St., 3rd Floor, Dallas, Texas, 75242-1699

We citizens of the United States of America do hereby petition you Richard B. Roper [u.S. Attorney for Federal District of North Texas] to fulfill your obligations [under U.S. Code : Title 18, Section 3331(Summoning and term) –3332 (Powers & Duties) & 3331 (Reports); Or appropriate statute for correct jurisdiction]; See: Documentary Exhibits #1 (a), (B), ©] and carry out your duties to convene a grand jury of American citizens to “operate as an investigative agency…in cases of civic corruption or misconduct by public officers….to look into the criminal conduct prior to the arrest of any suspect…(since)…the inquisitorial power of the grand jury may operate to develop evidence against civic corruption, organized crime, or a broad array of criminal activity.”

This request is being submitted for the purposes of:

1) Completing previously impeded official investigations; by the Dallas Police, Texas State, Secret Service, FBI, the Warren Commission, Church Intelligence Committee, Rockefeller Commission, Pike Committee, House Select Committee on Assassinations, Assassinations Records Review Board; Justice Department of the United States;

2) To determine the disposition and establish the provenance of all relevant evidence, records and witnesses;

3) To answer all outstanding questions that can be reasonably answered by basic inquiry and independent investigation (and not by agencies or departments of the government that have been implicated in the crime);

4) To have qualified experts review the available acoustic, ballistic, medical and autopsy evidence and to order new, independent studies and tests you deem necessary, including proper forensic autopsies of victims;

5) To review the available documentary records and hard evidence, subpoena witnesses, take their testimony, determine what crimes have been committed and whether there is enough evidence to indict those individuals responsible for crimes related to the assassination, including but not limited to conspiracy, homicide, treason, destruction of evidence, obstruction of justice and perjury;

6) To help restore public confidence in government, the law and the legal and judicial systems of this country; The public confidence in the government of the United States began to decline, according to polls, in December, 1963, directly as a result of the assassination of the President, and has never been regained, and will not be until the remaining questions are properly answered.

We citizens of the United States hereby present you with this petition, along with the relevant discovered evidence, records and exhibits, and respectfully request that you carry out your responsibilities under the law.

When you are finished we ask you to publicly report [under Sec. 3333] what steps you have taken, what you have discovered and whether you have determined if indictments should be brought against any individuals for crimes related to the assassination of John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States.

Attached: Evidence List; Exhibits; Living MaterialWitness List; Living Expert Witness List; Outstanding Questions; List of Related Crimes;

William E. Kelly, Jr. –

List of names of co-signers to petition.

[Note: Although the assassination of the President was not a federal crime in 1963, it was a federal crime to conspire to kill a federal official in the line of duty. Therefore we are submitting this petition, with evidentiary exhibits of conspiracy to Special Federal Grand Juries in the Northern District of the State of Texas, in New Orleans Parish in Louisiana and Washington D.C. requesting that a Special Federal Grand Jury be convened especially for these particular cases, guided by a Assistant U.S. Attorney and assisted by a Task Force of independent researchers, professionals, investigators, law enforcement officers and judicial officials.]

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