Today, on CBS’s Face the Nation, host Bob Schieffer pressed Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) about his views on Bush’s illegal NSA surveillance program. Frist, who famously flaunts the fact that he holds a medical degree, didn’t hestitate to share his legal diagnosis:
FRIST: I believe the program — I know the program is constitutional — that it is legal –
SCHIEFFER: Alright, let me just stop you, and let me just get back to the question that I asked you. Since you know all about it, as you’re one of the 8 who knows more about it than the others, do you think that the whole situation needs to be brought under the control of the court? Do you think we either need new laws to do that or do you think it’s ok to just keep going as you’re going?
FRIST: Does it have to be thrown over to the courts, going back to the question you just asked? I don’t think so. I personally don’t think so.
SCHIEFFER: You don’t think that the court needs to issue a court order before they do that?
While Frist was busy parroting the White House view, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who served six-and-a-half years of service on active duty as an Air Force lawyer, suggested the program is illegal and needs to be brought before a court:
GRAHAM: I am adamant that the courts have some role when it comes to warrants. If you’re going to follow an American citizen around for an extended period of time, believing they’re collaborating with the enemy, at some point in time you need to get some judicial review because mistakes can be made.