When President Bush secretly authorized the National Security Agency (NSA) to spy on Americans, he may have violated the Constitution and his oath of office.
His order was in clear violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which was passed by Congress in 1978 in response to revelations that former President Nixon was using national security claims to spy on American citizens he considered his "enemies." FISA made it a crime to intentionally engage in electronic surveillance without court approval. The president clearly violated the law when he authorized, and then repeatedly reauthorized, the NSA to spy on Americans with first obtaining a warrant.
The ACLU has demanded records from the NSA and other agencies in connection with the domestic spying secretly approved by the president.
A special counsel must be named to lead the investigation into this executive misconduct; Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has shattered any appearance of independence by approving and defending this clear violation of our federal criminal law.
No American is beneath the law's protection. And no one -- not even a U.S. president -- is above the law's limits. Our system of checks and balances must be maintained if American democracy is to be preserved.