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Republican congressman: I have ‘no hesitation whatsoever’ in probing Bush for torture

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A newly elected Republican congressman said in a little-noticed interview Tuesday he’d have “no hesitation whatsoever” in beginning an investigation of the former President George W. Bush for torture.

Appearing on MSNBC’s The Dylan Rattigan show, GOP Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), who also serves on the House Government Oversight Committee, said he’d be more than willing to join a torture probe.

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“How far back do you think is appropriate?” Rattigan asked. “Because the one thing that’s not on this list is for instance a torture investigation.”

“Well, it may be on the list as well,” Chaffetz said. “I’m not afraid of going after the Bush administration. I wasn’t brought here by the establishment.

“When I ran for congressman in 2008 — I’m just a freshman here, George W. Bush, Orrin Hatch, and Bob Bennett, three Republicans, they campaigned against me,” Chaffetz added. “So I don’t mind going back and looking at ‘em. So I don’t have any hestitation whatsoever.”

Chaffetz’s position differs from that of the current Democratic presidential administration of Barack Obama. The civil liberties group American Civil Liberties Union has criticized Obama for not being more proactive in opening investigations into CIA practices.

“This is the remarkable thing: Other countries are reckoning with the legacy of the Bush administration’s torture program, and meanwhile the United States is not,” Jameel Jaffer, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s national security program, told McClatchy Newspapers in August.

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“That’s part of why we’re so concerned,” Jaffer added. “The Obama administration, rather than investigate the abuses of the last eight years, has increasingly become an obstacle to accountability.”

Still, there is an ongoing investigation into whether the CIA or its contractors went beyond US law when interrogating suspected terrorists.

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Attorney General Eric Holder has tapped Assistant US Attorney John Durham to asked him to look into whether the CIA or contractors went beyond legal interrogation methods. That investigation is ongoing, according to NPR.

Chaffetz’s comments were first picked up by the liberal blog, ThinkProgress. A detailed (and thoughtful) investigative profile of the congressman can be read at The Washington City Paper website.

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Conservative Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams feels personally ‘abused’ by Trump

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Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams has spent an overwhelming amount of time, energy and money supporting President Donald Trump. He tried to rewrite history on the Charlottesville riots and has defended the president for years. But the Tuesday evening debate seems to have broken him.

In a video, Mr. Adams lamented that Trump had every opportunity to take down a Democratic talking point about him being a racist. But he didn't.

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‘Scheme of the devil’: Southern Baptist leaders repudiate Trump’s views on white supremacy

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Senior leaders within the Southern Baptist Convention are speaking out against white supremacy in the wake of President Trump's controversial comments where he called on the far-right nationalist group Proud Boys to "stand back and stand by," the Christian Post reports.

"When asked to condemn white supremacy, every single one of us should be ready to do so. Racism is, sadly, not extinct, and we know from our Southern Baptist history the effects of the horrific sins of racism and hatred," SBC President J.D. Greear said on Twitter Wednesday afternoon.

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2020 Election

Chris Wallace blames Trump for ‘awful’ debate: ‘He bears the primary responsibility for what happened’

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Fox News host Chris Wallace on Thursday blamed President Donald Trump for what he admitted was an "awful" debate.

In his first TV appearance following Tuesday night's debate, Wallace noted that Trump had interrupted either Democrat Joe Biden or himself 145 times.

"He bears the primary responsibility for what happened on Tuesday," Wallace said. "At a certain point, 45 minutes in, I called a halt to the debate for a moment and said this really isn't serving America and please stop the interruptions."

Wallace complained that his team had spent "hundreds" of hours preparing for the debate only to have it spoiled by the president.

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