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Lieberman Hates Transparency, Flips Over Detainee Photos

Lieberman-Graham torture photo ban will be added to 'every piece of legislation that comes down the pike.'

Yesterday, Jane Hamsher reported that the detainee photo amendment sponsored by Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was stripped from the war supplemental in committee. The amendment would have allowed the Obama administration to suppress any “photograph taken between September 11, 2001 and January 22, 2009 relating to the treatment of individuals engaged, captured, or detained” after 9/11 by U.S. forces. This afternoon, Graham and Lieberman held a press conference to register their objections to dropping the measure and announce that they had “added our original legislation as an amendment to the FDA regulation of tobacco bill that’s on the floor right now”:

LIEBERMAN: [W]e’re going to vote against cloture on the bill, and I’m going to do everything I can to see if I can convince other Democrats to do that.

We’re just not going to roll over because some folks in the House don’t like this amendment. [W]e’re going to do everything we can to hold up the supplemental appropriations bill until we’re sure that this amendment prohibiting the release of these dangerous photographs is on that bill. And then we’ll continue to do everything we can to attach it to other legislation, to slow up the process.

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Graham said the amendment was needed because “These photos, if they’re released, will be used by the enemy to incite violence as they walk down these streets.” A “senior Democratic aide” told the Weekly Standard that the two senators would “attach [the amendment] to every piece of legislation that comes down the pike.”

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Ryan Powers is a former intern of the Center for American Progress and a senior at the College of William and Mary.