Why the Republican Senate Letter to Iranian Ayatollahs May Have Broken the Law

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 10, 2015 10:33 PM GMT
    That letter from the Arkansas Republican to the ayatollahs and other Iranian officials [and signed by 46 other Republican US Senators], critics say, is a violation of the 1799 Logan Act, which says starkly:

    “Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.”


    Uh-oh!

    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/47-gop-senators-broke-law-iran-letter/story?id=29528727
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 10, 2015 10:46 PM GMT
    B_sydpOWQAAAWSt.jpg
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 10, 2015 11:17 PM GMT
    Senate Republicans who sent a letter to Iran’s leaders in an unprecedented attempt to undermine nuclear talks are siding with America’s enemies, President Obama and Senate Democrats charged Monday.

    “It’s somewhat ironic to see some members of Congress wanting to make common cause with the hard-liners in Iran,” Obama told reporters Monday. “It’s an unusual coalition.”

    Senate Democrats went further. “Let’s be clear,” Minority Leader Harry Reid said. “Republicans are undermining our commander-in-chief while empowering the ayatollahs.”


    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/gop-letter-iran-dangerous-biden-dems-article-1.2143473

    The participants represented the bulk of the Republicans’ 54-member senatorial majority, vesting their petulant, condescending stunt with the coloration of an institutional foreign policy statement.

    They are an embarrassment to the Senate and to the nation.


    http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/editorial-un-patriot-games-article-1.2143378?sdadsaf
  • Svnw688

    Posts: 3350

    Mar 10, 2015 11:38 PM GMT
    The "open letter" is a direct violation of the Act. Nobody is above the law. Each Senator should be prosecuted for intending to interfere with a dispute/controversy between the US and Iran. The "open letter" is, literally, a smoking gun of ADMISSION.

    The defense lawyers (representing the Senators) should agree to skip the liability phase and simply plea bargain for a reduced sentence.

    THE RULE OF LAW MUST PREVAIL. The GOP shouldn't get an excuse or an exception to the law.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 10, 2015 11:40 PM GMT
    Art_Deco:

    Total nonsense. Democrats are shitting in their pants. Senators were advising Iran about procedures in the US. This link has examples of Democrats involving themselves during the G. W. Bush's presidency.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/nbc-news-whitewashes-history-iran-diplomacy_880789.html

    The real traitor is Obama who is undermining this country and our allies.

    If you are ex-military and had the slightest bit of self-respect left, which I doubt, you would have the same attitude about Obama that the great majority of military have, who are sickened at the damage this POS is causing.

    Just 15% of active-duty servicemembers gave Obama a thumbs up in the annual Military Times survey and more than half -- 55% -- say they disapprove of Obama's job as commander-in-chief.
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/12/22/politics/obama-military-low-approval-rating/
  • bobbobbob

    Posts: 2812

    Mar 10, 2015 11:59 PM GMT
    So lets make sure we're on the same page. Are you talking about the current Senate Republicans who do actually have more to do with US foreign policy that a former president who wrote a secret letter to the UN Security Council trying to undermine the president at that time?

    “Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.”

    Then Jimmy Carter ought to be sitting his butt in prison shouldn't he?


    http://origin.tampabays10.com/news/article/146840/0/Jimmy-Carter-My-presidency-was-a-success

  • bobbobbob

    Posts: 2812

    Mar 11, 2015 12:01 AM GMT
    But that's just the start.

    1983 Ted Kennedy proposed a secret alliance with the Soviet Union to defeat President Ronald Reagan.

    1984, 10 Democratic lawmakers — including the then majority leader and House Intelligence Committee chairman – sent a letter to Nicaraguan Communist leader Daniel Ortega known as the “Dear Comandante” letter. In it, the lawmakers criticized Reagan’s policy toward Nicaragua and whitewashed the record of violence by the Sandinista communists.

    2007 Nancy Pelosi visited Syrian dictator Bashar Assad

    2002 Democrats visited Iraq to trash Bush’s policy


    http://americanlibertypac.com/2015/03/here-are-5-times-democrats-undermined-republican-presidents-with-foreign-governments/
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 12:18 AM GMT
    REPUBLICANS WHO ARE PATRIOTS, who have put country above politics:


    Lisa Murkowski (Alaska)
    Jeff Flake (Ariz.)
    Daniel Coats (Ind.)
    Susan Collins (Maine)
    Thad Cochran (Miss.)
    Lamar Alexander (Tenn.)
    Bob Corker (Tenn.)


    Celebrate Decency!
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Mar 11, 2015 12:24 AM GMT
    I find their whole tactic absolutely disgraceful, but considering how lowly the republicans continue to sink, it doesn't surprise me at all.

    I'd love to see the bastards prosecuted!

    icon_wink.gif
  • Hypertrophile

    Posts: 1021

    Mar 11, 2015 12:34 AM GMT
    There are plenty of examples of members of congress going against the White House on foreign policy and having meetings behind the president's back. On Thom Hartmann's program today he referenced a book that had all the speeches made on the floors of both the House and Senate in support of Hitler and against entering the war.

    This "letter" from the Republicans in the Senate goes beyond that, IMO, because not only it is a attempt to weaken our president during a delicate negotiation, the authors know full well that this also puts the entire nation at risk. Further, the GOP's agenda is clearly to lead us into war rather than away from one, which is what the previous examples of congressional interference were attempting.

    IMO, the Republican senators that signed this letter weren't trying to send a message to Iran. The message is clearly addressed to their voting base, but it also shows a tremendous lack of respect for those voters from whom they expect support. What the Republcan party is expecting you all to forget is that these talks with Iran aren't between Obama and the Ayatollah. The UN Security Council +1 (Germany) are all involved in seeking a diplomatic solution and cooperation by Iran. The representatives of those other nations seem to agree with President Obama that this is the preferred approach, and worth working for.

    Personally, I have a lot more respect for all of those involved in these talks than anyone in the Senate Republicans deserve, with one possible exception: Senator Corker, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, who did not sign the letter. Given his position in that committee, the fact that he was one of the few who did not sign it speaks volumes against the letter.

    The fact is, this letter will do nothing to stymie the negotiations, and everything to demonstrate to the voters that the Republicans will always put the Party ahead of everything. Ahead of the economy, ahead employment, and ahead of the health of our citizens. And now they are putting party ahead of peace abroad and security at home. Nothing is as important to them as taking control of both houses and the presidency.

    Seeing all this gives us a clear understanding of what will happen should they manage to succeed in gaining that level of control.
  • roadbikeRob

    Posts: 14310

    Mar 11, 2015 2:32 AM GMT
    Well the democrats are no damned better. They put their party and their agendas ahead of this country. Don't give me that baseless bullshit that it is just the republicans because the democrats are just as rotten.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 2:47 AM GMT
    bobbobbob said
    But that's just the start.


    1983 Ted Kennedy proposed a secret alliance with the Soviet Union to defeat President Ronald Reagan.

    Ummm... how about Presidential Candidate Reagan's secret negotiations with Iran, while Jimmy Carter was still President, to delay the release of the US embassy hostages until the minute after Reagan's inauguration?
  • Hypertrophile

    Posts: 1021

    Mar 11, 2015 3:23 AM GMT
    roadbikeRob saidWell the democrats are no damned better. They put their party and their agendas ahead of this country. Don't give me that baseless bullshit that it is just the republicans because the democrats are just as rotten.




    Well, I never said anything about Republicans being the only ones putting party ahead of the country, but I will say they are the only group I trust less than the Democrats. Still, if you're correct about the two parties, and I don't totally disagree, then my post was not baseless, was it?

    I will also say that in my lifetime I have never seen anyone work so hard against so many as I have the current group of Republicans in congress. Supporting the GOP is at your own peril far more than supporting the Democrats.

    Personally, I'd like to see a strong independent candidate in 2016, if only to steer the debates and keep the two lamestream candidates somewhat honest.
  • Hypertrophile

    Posts: 1021

    Mar 11, 2015 5:07 AM GMT
    Some funny things about all this. For one, the letter supposedly informs Iran about our Constitutional system. Considering that Iran's Foreign Minister was educated here, and certainly knows at least as much as most House reps about our Constitution, he knows infinitely more about international law. If a treaty is signed under Obama's administration, and the next president overturns it, he or she would then be in violation of that law, so the odds of that happening are slim.

    Further, these Senators are acting as private citizens and not representing the Senate. I would also argue that they aren't necessarily representing their districts either. Without a majority vote, for any of them to suggest that "the Senate" did this would be a false statement, and possibly illegal. Either way this was a weak effort having less than half the Senate participating.

    I know a treaty is signed into law under the advise and consent of the Senate, provided two thirds of those present concur. But, with 54 senators dissenting from this letter, The President is only 13 votes short of the two thirds needed. When the rubber meets the road and the US is the last of the Security Council to approve the treaty, at least 13 Senators are going to swallow their partisan pride for the good of the nation and our allies. Of this I have no doubt.
  • tj85016

    Posts: 4123

    Mar 11, 2015 5:18 AM GMT
    ^^

    please, the US and the Brits signed a treaty with Ukraine to protect them from Russia and all we did was stage a coup in Ukraine and let Russia take Crimea.

    now we're trying to stage a coup in Venezuela.

    the US is a very corrupt nation, but people our age have know that since Vietnam.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 5:23 AM GMT
    tj85016 said^^

    please, the US and the Brits signed a treaty with Ukraine to protect them from Russia and all we did was stage a coup in Ukraine and let Russia take Crimea.

    now we're trying to stage a coup in Venezuela.

    the US is a very corrupt nation, but people our age have know [sic] that since Vietnam.

    Please, for most of Vietnam you were in elementary school.
  • tj85016

    Posts: 4123

    Mar 11, 2015 5:28 AM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    tj85016 said^^

    please, the US and the Brits signed a treaty with Ukraine to protect them from Russia and all we did was stage a coup in Ukraine and let Russia take Crimea.

    now we're trying to stage a coup in Venezuela.

    the US is a very corrupt nation, but people our age have know that since Vietnam.

    Please, for most of Vietnam you were in elementary school.


    I remember watching the "death count" on TV (channel 2,4 or 7 in New York) almost every night. It was usually something like this:

    US dead: 560
    Vietnamese dead: 3250

    and it went on for months and years
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 5:38 AM GMT
    tj85016 said
    Art_Deco said
    tj85016 said^^

    please, the US and the Brits signed a treaty with Ukraine to protect them from Russia and all we did was stage a coup in Ukraine and let Russia take Crimea.

    now we're trying to stage a coup in Venezuela.

    the US is a very corrupt nation, but people our age have know [sic] that since Vietnam.

    Please, for most of Vietnam you were in elementary school.

    I remember watching the "death count" on TV (channel 2,4 or 7 in New York) almost every night. It was usually something like this:

    US dead: 560
    Vietnamese dead: 3250

    Fine, I remember it, too.

    Channel 2 = WCBS-TV
    Channel 4 = WNBC-TV
    Channel 7 = WABC-TV

    The network O&O flagship stations at that time.

    But what would you have possibly understood about larger issues as an elementary school student, from watching body count numbers? That were mainly on the CBS Evening News, with Walter Cronkite?

    That you can conclude that the US is a "very corrupt nation". Please validate your statement with facts, not subjective opinion.
  • Hypertrophile

    Posts: 1021

    Mar 11, 2015 5:47 AM GMT
    Yes, we're a very corrupt nation. Unfortunately party politics and corporate capitalism are breeding grounds for corruption that particularly favor those who are sociopaths.

    That said, this president may be corrupt in some ways, but he also may be the first since Eisenhower who is not clearly in the pockets of the Military-Industrial Complex. I like that the talks include the five permanent members of the Security Counsel, plus Germany, and have at least the appearance of working toward peace rather than working away from war, or toward war in the case of this letter. I think we need to give this process a chance while there's time. The president was elected to do just what he's doing and congress should support the peace process. They have no more idea what the outcome of these talks will be than anyone.

    If after the talks have concluded he brings them a bullshit treaty, then they can begin the rancor.
  • tj85016

    Posts: 4123

    Mar 11, 2015 5:50 AM GMT
    please, the US has been a very corrupt nation since the Spanish-American war. We never really shook off those English roots.

    Is your head really buried that deep in the sand?
  • Svnw688

    Posts: 3350

    Mar 11, 2015 6:15 AM GMT
    What the GOP Senators did is UNPRECEDENTED, and can only be framed as an effort to help Iran, a known adversary to U.S. interests, or to scuttle the President of the United States' negotiations.

    Either way, the GOP Senators must explain themselves.

    Pathetic GOP politics reaching across the border. Oh wait, this happened with Netanyahu just recently. GOP, STOP PLAYING POLITICS ON THE INTERNATIONAL STAGE. The unprecedented racist animus against Obama is so obvious it's breaking records and setting precedents.

    "You lie!"
    "Hey Iran, here's how our Constitutional system works."
    "Netanyahu, come on down, you're up for the price is right."

    When will the crazy GOP party stop their racist and animus based attacks?
  • roadbikeRob

    Posts: 14310

    Mar 11, 2015 11:49 AM GMT
    Svnw688 saidWhat the GOP Senators did is UNPRECEDENTED, and can only be framed as an effort to help Iran, a known adversary to U.S. interests, or to scuttle the President of the United States' negotiations.

    Either way, the GOP Senators must explain themselves.

    Pathetic GOP politics reaching across the border. Oh wait, this happened with Netanyahu just recently. GOP, STOP PLAYING POLITICS ON THE INTERNATIONAL STAGE. The unprecedented racist animus against Obama is so obvious it's breaking records and setting precedents.

    "You lie!"
    "Hey Iran, here's how our Constitutional system works."
    "Netanyahu, come on down, you're up for the price is right."

    When will the crazy GOP party stop their racist and animus based attacks?
    Probably when you end your blind support of the hapless Hillary ho for president in 2016. Get your head out of your ass bunky.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 12:43 PM GMT
    http://www.forbes.com/2009/08/27/ted-kennedy-soviet-union-ronald-reagan-opinions-columnists-peter-robinson.html

    Ted Kennedy's Soviet Gambit

    Picking his way through the Soviet archives that Boris Yeltsin had just thrown open, in 1991 Tim Sebastian, a reporter for the London Times, came across an arresting memorandum. Composed in 1983 by Victor Chebrikov, the top man at the KGB, the memorandum was addressed to Yuri Andropov, the top man in the entire USSR. The subject: Sen. Edward Kennedy.

    “On 9-10 May of this year,” the May 14 memorandum explained, “Sen. Edward Kennedy’s close friend and trusted confidant [John] Tunney was in Moscow.” (Tunney was Kennedy’s law school roommate and a former Democratic senator from California.) “The senator charged Tunney to convey the following message, through confidential contacts, to the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Y. Andropov.”

    Kennedy’s message was simple. He proposed an unabashed quid pro quo. Kennedy would lend Andropov a hand in dealing with President Reagan. In return, the Soviet leader would lend the Democratic Party a hand in challenging Reagan in the 1984 presidential election. “The only real potential threats to Reagan are problems of war and peace and Soviet-American relations,” the memorandum stated. “These issues, according to the senator, will without a doubt become the most important of the election campaign.”

    Rest of article at link.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 11, 2015 1:26 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    bobbobbob said
    But that's just the start.


    1983 Ted Kennedy proposed a secret alliance with the Soviet Union to defeat President Ronald Reagan.

    Ummm... how about Presidential Candidate Reagan's secret negotiations with Iran, while Jimmy Carter was still President, to delay the release of the US embassy hostages until the minute after Reagan's inauguration?


    Of course when Romney made a similar, but nowhere near an identical claim in the 2012 campaign, many of you the left were claiming that Reagan had nothing to with it.

    Politifact agrees

    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/mar/07/mitt-romney/mitt-romney-says-iran-released-hostages-1981-becau/

    "Our ruling

    We can’t read the Iranians’ minds, but seven scholars of the period told us that Reagan’s foreign policy approach was either a minor factor in the release of the hostages or not a factor at all. The fact that the deal was negotiated entirely by the Carter administration, without involvement by Reagan or his transition team, seems to support the expert consensus. Romney made a claim that flies in the face of history and offered no evidence to support it. We rate the statement Pants On Fire."
  • rnch

    Posts: 11524

    Mar 11, 2015 4:16 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidI find their whole tactic absolutely disgraceful, but considering how lowly the republicans continue to sink, it doesn't surprise me at all.

    I'd love to see the bastards prosecuted!

    icon_wink.gif




    Agree.....and AGREE icon_exclaim.gif