Tuesday, July 10, 2007

DoD Clearance for Drug Addicts and Ex-Cons?

What the hell is going on in Washington? It's bad enough the inept Democrats can't get anything done and the President keeps plummeting in opinion polls. You'd think after the shamnesty debacle, they'd all just slink out of town for the rest of the summer. But could someone possibly explain why anyone in their right mind thinks it's a good idea for ex-cons to get DoD security clerance?

Ex- convicts and addicts may get DoD clearance
At the Pentagon’s request, Senate defense authorizers tucked deep within a defense bill a repeal of the department’s restriction on granting security clearances to ex-convicts, drug addicts and the mentally incompetent.

The repeal provision now is creating discord between the Senate Armed Services and the Intelligence committees. In its markup of the 2008 defense authorization bill, the Intelligence panel voted to delete the Armed Services provision.

The fate of the provision could become a flashpoint this week as the Senate takes up the bill
Yes, I would hope so.
The Senate Armed Services panel seeks to repeal a seven-year-old law that established mandatory standards disqualifying certain people from receiving security clearances.

Under the law, members of the military services, employees of the Department of Defense or contractors working for the Pentagon cannot receive a security clearance if they were convicted of a crime in any U.S. court and went to prison for at least one year; if they are unlawful users of illegal substances; if they are considered mentally incompetent or if they were dishonorably discharged or dismissed from the armed forces.
Seems logical to me. Read the rest, but keep in mind one thing: In DC these days, it all comes back to -- you guessed it -- Scooter Libby.
Removing the restriction opens the door to security clearances for high-profile felons, such as I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, the senior White House aide whose prison sentence was commuted by President Bush last week.

“Could a Scooter Libby be hired by DoD?” Aftergood said. “The answer is, he wouldn’t be automatically disqualified.”
Don Surber has more, and sums it up succinctly:
This is crazy.

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