Feingold began by pointing out that the administration, including Gonzales, has many times accused opponents of the "Terrorist Surveillance Program" -- meaning those who insisted that eavesdropping take place within the law, within the FISA framework -- of "opposing eavesdropping on terrorists" (I can find 20 examples in 5 minutes of that).
Feingold's first question - "do you know of any one in the country who opposed eavesdropping on terrorists?"
Gonzales: Sure - if you look at blogs today, there is a lot of concern about all types of eavesdropping, who don't want us eavesdropping at all.
Feingold: Do you know anyone in government who ever took that position?
Gonzales: No, but that is not what I said.
Feingold: It is a disgrace and disservice to your office and the President to have accused people on this Committee of opposing eavesdropping on terrorists.
Gonzales: I didn't have you in mind or anyone on the Committee when I referred to people who oppose eavesdropping on terrorists. Perish the thought.
Feingold: Oh, well it's nice that you didn't have us "in your mind" when making those accusations, but given that you and the President were running around the country accusing people of opposing eavesdropping on terrorists in the middle of an election, the fact that you didn't have Congressional Democrats in "mind" isn't significant. Your intent was to make people think that anyone who opposed the "TSP" did not want to eavesdrop on terrorists, even though that was false. No Democrats oppose eavesdropping on terrorists.
Gonzales: I wasn't referring to Democrats.
So, apparently, all those speeches Bush officials and their supporters have spent the last year giving accusing people of opposing eavesdropping on terrorists, and all the television commercials making the same accusations throughout the months leading up to the election, were not about Democrats at all, but were about random bloggers who are against all eavesdropping. Where? Maybe on Smirking Chimp and Democratic Underground. That is who they meant when they were talking about opposing eavesdropping on Osama bin Laden. They didn't mean Democrats in Congress. The entire campaign and all of those accusations were directed only to the bloggers who don't want them eavesdropping at all.
I confess to finding that exchange deeply revolting though satisfying at the same time. Can't they just all yield all of their time to Feingold?
Damn I wish that man was running for President.