Dayton v. Kennedy

Returning Senator Mark Dayton to the Ranks of the Idle Rich in 2006

1/07/2005

Tending the Base

With full knowledge that the base of the DFL considers Abu Ghraib to be the moral equivalent of Treblinka, Senator Dayton yesterday made it clear he is "strongly inclined to vote against (Gonzales') nomination".

WASHINGTON - Sen. Mark Dayton said Thursday he will probably vote against the nomination of Alberto Gonzales for attorney general, while Sen. Norm Coleman said he will support the nomination.

Neither senator is on the Judiciary Committee, which held a confirmation hearing on Gonzales on Thursday. But both will vote on the nomination once it comes out of committee.

"I'm extremely troubled by his record based on what I've read so far," Dayton, D-Minn., told reporters on a conference call. "I'm strongly inclined to vote against his confirmation, but I'm not going to make a final determination until the record is complete."

Dayton said he was disturbed by Gonzales' conclusion, as White House counsel, that the Geneva Convention protections for prisoners of war did not apply to terror suspects.

"What causes me greatest trouble so far is his role in condoning and providing a legal framework for the United States to renounce the Geneva Convention, and its proper treatment of prisoners," Dayton said.

The United States should follow the convention because of both morality and self-interest, Dayton said.

"For the United States to be in the position of not upholding those principles and practices is not only immoral but also puts our own troops and citizens at risk," he said.

"It sets the standard that we want to be applied to our own citizens and troops in those situations. We don't have any ground to object if we're not following those practices ourselves."

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