[Congressional Record: January 7, 2009 (Senate)]
[Page S157-S161]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]


  Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Madam President, I would like to speak--and I am 
joined on the floor by my comember of the Intelligence Committee, 
Senator Ron Wyden, who will also speak on this issue--about the bill 
that Senators Rockefeller, Wyden and Whitehouse and I introduced 
yesterday. It is the Lawful Interrogation and Detention Act.
  I began this effort some time ago because I believe very strongly it 
is time to end the failed experiment at Guantanamo. It is time to 
repudiate torture and secret disappearances. It is time to end the 
outsourcing of coercive interrogations to outside contractors.
  I believe it is time to return to the norms and values that have 
driven the United States to greatness since the days of George 
Washington but have been tarnished in the past 7 years. That is what 
both Senator Wyden and I hope this bill will do.
  I have sent a copy of it to President-elect Obama's transition team. 
I have had occasion to talk with him about it and indicated that we 
look to work closely with him.
  What this bill would do is require the President to close the 
detention facilities at Guantanamo Bay within 12 months. The need to 
close this facility is clear. Along with the abuses at Abu Ghraib, 
Guantanamo has been decried throughout the world. It has helped our 
enemies recruit, it has reduced America's credibility worldwide, 
strained relationships with our allies, and created a misguided dual 
legal system.
  Additionally, the Supreme Court now has ruled four times that the 
procedures put in place at Guantanamo are illegal. First, in Rasul v. 
Bush, the Court ruled the administration could not hold detainees 
outside U.S. law on Guantanamo soil; second, Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, in 
which the Court ruled the Government could not detain a U.S. citizen 
without due process and struck down the executive's process of labeling 
detainees as unlawful enemy combatants; third, Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, in 
which the Court struck down the administration's process for trying 
detainees outside the civilian legal system or the Uniform Code of 
Military Justice; and most recently in Boumediene, in which the Court 
ruled that detainees must be afforded habeas corpus.
  Guantanamo was explicitly created to be a separate and lesser system 
of justice, to hold people captured on or near the battlefield in 
Afghanistan indefinitely. In 7 years, it has produced three 
convictions, including Australian David Hicks--who agreed to a plea 
bargain to get off the island, and Osama bin Laden's driver, Salim 
Hamdan, whose sentence is almost already up.
  The hard part about closing Guantanamo is not deciding to go do it; 
it is figuring out what to do with the remaining detainees. Under the 
Lawful Interrogation and Detention Act, the approximately 250 
individuals now being held there would be handled in one of five ways.
  No. 1, they can be charged with a crime and tried in the United 
States in the Federal civilian or military justice systems. These 
systems have handled terrorists and other dangerous individuals before 
and are capable of dealing with classified evidence and other unusual 
  Second, individuals could be transferred to an international 
tribunal, if such a tribunal exists.
  Third, detainees could be returned to their native countries or, if 
that is not possible, they could be transferred to a different country.
  To date, more than 500 men have been sent from Guantanamo to the 
custody of other countries. Recently, Portugal and other nations have 
suggested they would be open to taking some of the remaining detainees 
as a way to help close Guantanamo. That is good news.
  If there are detainees who cannot be charged with crimes or 
transferred to the custody of another country, there is a fourth 
option. If the Secretary of Defense and the Director of National 
Intelligence agree an individual poses no security threat to the United 
States, the U.S. Government may release him. This may work, for 
example, for the Chinese Uighurs remaining at Guantanamo. I believe 
five or six Uighurs have already been released. The District Court for 
the District of Columbia has ordered that the remaining 17 Uighurs be 
released into our country. That decision has been stayed upon appeal.
  Finally, for detainees who cannot be addressed in any one of the 
other four

[[Page S158]]

options, the executive branch could hold them under existing 
authorities provided by the law of armed conflict.
  I believe these options provide sufficient flexibility to handle the 
250 or so people now being held at Guantanamo. If the incoming Obama 
administration decides that other alternatives are needed, I hope they 
will come to the Congress, explain the specifics of the problem, and we 
will work toward a joint legislative solution.
  The three other provisions in the legislation end parts of the CIA's 
secret detention and interrogation program.
  Some of the details of the program are already publicly known, such 
as the use of waterboarding on three individuals some years ago. Other 
aspects remain secret, such as the other authorized interrogation 
techniques and how they are used.
  There have been public allegations of multiple deaths of detainees in 
CIA custody. There was one conviction of a CIA contractor in the death 
of a detainee in Afghanistan, but other details remain classified.
  But it is well known that on August 1, 2002, the Justice Department 
approved coercive interrogation techniques, including waterboarding, 
for the CIA's use. This, despite the fact that the Justice Department 
has prosecuted the use of waterboarding, and the State Department has 
decried it overseas.
  The administration used what I believe to be faulty logic and faulty 
reasoning to say that waterboarding was not torture. In fact, it is.
  We will never turn this sad page in our Nation's history until all 
coercive techniques are banned and are replaced with a single, clear, 
uniform standard across the U.S. Government. I cannot say that too 
  That standard established by this legislation is the interrogation 
set of protocols outlined in the Army Field Manual.
  This is the field manual. It is not a casual document. It has been 
developed and revised over a period of time. It contains 19 specific 
interrogation techniques. They work for the military and operate under 
the same framework as the time-honored approach of the FBI. If the CIA 
would abide by its terms, it would work for the CIA as well.
  These techniques were at the heart of former FBI Special Agent Jack 
Cloonan's successful interrogation of those involved in the 1993 World 
Trade Center bombing. They were also the tools used by Special Agent 
George Piro to get Saddam Hussein to provide the evidence that resulted 
in his death sentence.
  We have powerful expert testimony that the Army Field Manual 
techniques work against terrorist suspects. The manual's use across the 
Government is supported by scores of retired generals and admirals, by 
GEN David Petraeus, and by former Secretaries of State and national 
security advisers of both parties.
  Majorities in both Houses of Congress passed this provision last year 
as part of the fiscal year 2008 intelligence authorization bill. I 
offered that amendment, as I believe Senator Wyden will remember, in 
the joint conference between the House and the Senate Intelligence 
Committees, and it was added to the bill.
  It sends a clear message that we do not support coercive 
interrogations. But, regrettably, the President's veto of the bill 
stopped it from becoming law.
  The President-elect agrees that we need to end coercive 
interrogations and to comply strictly to the terms of the Convention 
Against Torture and the Geneva Conventions. So we look forward to 
working with him to end this sad story in our Nation's history.
  The third part of this legislation is a ban on contractor 
interrogators at the CIA. Now, this is interesting. Unlike the FBI, 
where FBI agents do their own interrogations, CIA agents do not carry 
out all their interrogations. They hire contractors to do so. As 
General Hayden has testified, the CIA hires and keeps on contract 
people who are not intelligence professionals and whose sole job is to 
break detainees and get them to talk.
  Now, I firmly and staunchly believe that outsourcing interrogations, 
whether coercive or more appropriate ones, to private companies is a 
way to diminish accountability.
  I also believe the use of contractors leads to more brutal 
interrogations than if they were done by Government employees.
  Think about it. You can have a set of interrogation practices and, 
dependent upon who administers them and the length of time they are 
administered and the combination in which they are administered, they 
can have very different effects on an individual.
  There are surely areas where paid contractors make practical and 
financial sense. Interrogation, a form of collecting intelligence, is 
not one of them.
  The fourth and the final provision in this legislation requires that 
the CIA and other intelligence agencies provide notification to the 
International Committee of the Red Cross, the ICRC, of their detainees. 
Following notification, the CIA will be required to provide 
International Red Cross officials with access to detainees in the same 
way the military does.
  Access by the ICRC is a hallmark of international law and is required 
by the Geneva Conventions. Access to a third party and the ICRC, in 
particular, was seen by the United States in 1947 as a guarantee that 
American men and women would be protected if they were ever captured 
  I believe it still remains that guarantee.
  We remain a nation at war, and credible, actionable intelligence 
remains a cornerstone of our war effort. But this is a war that will be 
won by fighting smarter, not sinking to the depths of our enemies.
  Our Nation has paid an enormous price because of these 
interrogations. They cast shadow and doubt over our ideals and our 
system of justice. Our enemies have used our practices to recruit more 
extremists. Our key global partnerships crucial to winning the war on 
terror have been strained. It will take time to resume our place as the 
world's beacon of liberty and justice. But I deeply believe, and the 
cosponsors believe, this bill will put us on that path and start the 
  So I urge its passage. I ask unanimous consent to have printed in the 
Record the history of this legislation and the matters it contains.
  There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in 
the Record, as follows:

       Legislative Activity on Guantanamo and CIA Interrogations

       April 30, 2007: Introduced the first Senate legislation to 
     close Guantanamo (co-sponsors: Dodd, Whitehouse, Kennedy, 
     Clinton, Kerry).
       July 11, 2007: Introduced amendment to close Guantanamo to 
     the FY08 Defense Authorization bill. Amendment blocked from 
     receiving Floor consideration. (co-sponsors: Harking, Dodd, 
     Clinton, Brown, Bingaman, Kennedy, Whitehouse, Obama, 
     Salazar, Durbin, Byrd, Biden, Hagel, Boxer, Feingold).
       December 5, 2007: Offered amendment to restrict CIA to Army 
     Field Manual interrogation techniques to the FY08 
     Intelligence Authorization conference report. Amendment 
     adopted, passed in conference report by House and Senate, 
     vetoed by President Bush March 8, 2008. (amendment co-
     sponsors: Hagel, Whitehouse, Feingold).
       August 1, 2008: Introduced legislation restricting the CIA 
     to the Army Field Manual, banning contractor interrogations, 
     and providing access to detainees to the ICRC (co-sponsors: 
     Rockefeller, Whitehouse, Hagel, Feingold, Wyden).
       January 6, 2009: Introduced legislation to close 
     Guantanamo, restricting the CIA to the Army Field Manual, 
     banning contractor interrogations, and providing access to 
     detainees to the ICRC (cosponsors: Rockefeller, Wyden, 

  Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Now I will defer to my distinguished friend, my 
colleague, the Senator from Oregon, the Honorable Ron Wyden. 
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oregon is recognized.
  Mr. WYDEN. Madam President, I am very pleased to be able to be out on 
the Senate floor today with our incoming chair of the Intelligence 
Committee to discuss this legislation. Senator Feinstein and I have sat 
next to each other on the Intelligence Committee now for I think about 
8 years. We have talked about this issue on many occasions. I commend 
the Senator from California for all of her leadership.
  This is the right way to start off our committee on breaking with the 
last 8 years of flawed policies that have been of dubious effectiveness 
and dubious legality. I am very pleased, honored to be one of our 
cosponsors, and I note that our outgoing chair, Senator Rockefeller, is 
one of our cosponsors, and Sheldon Whitehouse, the distinguished 
Senator from Rhode Island, is one of the cosponsors and is a great 
addition to our committee as well. So I

[[Page S159]]

thank the chair for all of her leadership.
  What I think Senator Feinstein has touched upon, and very 
thoughtfully, is, if you share our view that it is possible to fight 
terrorism ferociously without compromising American laws or American 
values, you must, as Senator Feinstein has correctly stated, you must 
be smarter in order to strike that balance in a dangerous world.
  Regrettably, this administration has not been willing to show this 
sort of wisdom. All too often for the last 8 years the administration 
has engaged in complicated legal gymnastics to justify antiterrorism 
programs that, in my view, are of questionable effectiveness, 
questionable legality. Today, the incoming chair of our committee, 
Senator Feinstein, is helping us with this important legislation. The 
Lawful Interrogation and Detention Act is helping us to right the 
balance and show the country that with smart antiterrorism policies we 
can effectively fight the war against terrorism and at the same time 
restore our moral authority and protect our values.
  I will tell you, based on the information I have seen again and 
again, and what we are told by military leaders, these coercive 
techniques simply are not effective. General Petraeus, for example, has 
discussed with respect to soldiers in Iraq, that coercive techniques 
may be usable in terms of forcing someone to talk, but that does not 
necessarily mean the person will say something that protects American 
  Senator McCain, our distinguished colleague from Arizona, has made 
much of the same point. Certainly, the use of these techniques in a 
number of instances can be detrimental to our national security. 
Certainly, the techniques have discouraged allies in the past from 
cooperating with us and, frankly, in my view, they serve as something 
of a recruiting poster for our enemies.
  One of the areas I hope to pursue in the future, not as part of this 
legislation but working with our incoming chair, working with our 
ranking minority member, Senator Bond, and the administration of the 
President-elect, is I hope to be able to declassify a significant 
portion of the history of this program, particularly the legal 
underpinnings of this program, so the American people will actually be 
able to see that much of what has been done in the last 8 years simply 
is not as effective in the war against terrorism as the American people 
  Certainly, it is important to recognize that when Americans are 
captured abroad in the future, international standards of prisoner 
treatment, particularly the Geneva Convention, will sometimes be the 
only shield they have. These standards have evolved from hopeful ideals 
into widely observed rules of conduct, partly because the most powerful 
country on Earth has led by example.
  Anytime our Government attempts to dodge these standards, it weakens 
them, and it increases the risk of abuse for our prisoners. The fact 
that our worst enemies have horrifying and barbaric methods for dealing 
with prisoners does not, in my view, make these methods useful or 
  I am confident that President-elect Obama is not going to engage in 
many of the practices that we have seen in the last 8 years. But I 
certainly want to pass legislation that codifies these important 
principles and makes sure that none of his future successors engage in 
these practices. That means you have to make the laws plain; you have 
to make them strong. This legislation will make them plainer and 
stronger than they are today. I would submit that is essentially what 
Senator Feinstein has been working for all these past years.
  I want to mention a couple of the other provisions. I was struck by 
Senator Feinstein's comment with respect to the use of contractor 
interrogators at the CIA. As Senator Feinstein noted, we do not get to 
have a lot of open sessions in our Intelligence Committee. That is for 
obvious reasons; we are dealing with classified material. But I have 
felt, as Senator Feinstein, very strongly about this topic and actually 
raised this concern with Admiral McConnell at his confirmation hearing 
to head our intelligence service. I remain concerned about this issue, 
and that provision in the Feinstein legislation is especially 
important, in my view, because interrogators must be accountable. Under 
the clear language with respect to these interrogators in the Feinstein 
legislation, that will be the case.
  Finally, let me comment on the provision that closes the prison at 
Guantanamo. During the past 8 years, I was concerned about the 
potential impact of this legislation and this provision. I was 
concerned at that point because it was not clear to me that President 
Bush had a competent plan for dealing with all of the prisoners 
currently held there.
  I was concerned that closing Guantanamo could simply lead to a 
massive upswing in extraordinary rendition. Fortunately, President-
elect Obama is working on a different strategy for dealing with those 
prisoners at Guantanamo, so I no longer have the same concern that 
under his administration we would simply have prisoners handed over to 
foreign countries that would torture them. I have long believed that if 
you looked at the intent of the Bush administration in this area, they 
sought to create a prison at Guantanamo Bay that would be under U.S. 
control but beyond the reach of U.S. law. Now the Supreme Court has 
definitively ruled that constitutional protections apply to people at 
Guantanamo Bay. So I would hope that even the prison's strongest 
advocates would say it serves no useful purpose.
  The combination of the clear language in the Feinstein legislation we 
discuss today and that President-elect Obama is looking at a 
comprehensive plan for dealing with the prisoners at Guantanamo leaves 
me with a reassurance that there is a chance to close this prison and 
do it in a responsible fashion that will protect America's national 
security interests.
  There are four of us who are sponsoring this legislation. We have 
sought for many months to get these issues of interrogation and 
Guantanamo right. We have consistently tried to pursue this in a 
bipartisan fashion. We are going to continue to do so in this session.
  I believe, under the leadership of our incoming chair, it is going to 
be possible to get our Nation's counterterrorism program back on a firm 
legal and operational footing and prevent the mistakes of the past from 
being repeated.
  I yield the floor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from California.
  Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Madam President, I thank the Senator. We are both 
westerners. We did sit together for about 8 years on the committee. As 
such, I have had a chance to discuss a great deal about this topic. It 
is a matter of very deep conscience and a sense of values of everything 
this Nation stands for, the thing that sets us apart from many other 
countries who pick people up and do horrible things to them. We don't 
do that. We have always had such pride in that. The Senator hit a nail 
on the head. People may talk, but they can say anything they want. It 
is not necessarily valuable. It is not necessarily actionable 
intelligence. Sometimes it might be. But there are other ways of doing 
this and not sacrificing the values we hold dear. The nearest tool to 
achieve that is the Army Field Manual.
  It has been great for me to work with the Senator from Oregon, and I 
look forward to working with him in the future. I thank him very much.
  I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that the 
order for the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. Madam President, I ask unanimous consent that I be 
allowed to speak for such time as I may consume in morning business.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. WHITEHOUSE. Thank you, Madam President.
  I come to the floor today to offer my support for S. 147, the Lawful 
Interrogation and Detention Act, which my very distinguished 
colleagues, Senator Feinstein of California and Senator Wyden of 
Oregon, have just spoken about.

[[Page S160]]

  This bill would do three very important things. The first is force 
the closing of the interrogation and detention activities at the 
Guantanamo Base. I have supported previous legislation that would do 
this. I enthusiastically support this legislation to do it.
  The Bush administration has created a pretty significant mess with 
the activities down at Guantanamo. Unfortunately, some things you can 
snarl up so tightly that it becomes very difficult to unsnarl them, and 
I am afraid that is exactly the situation with Guantanamo. It will be 
difficult to unsnarl. It is a real challenge for the incoming 
administration. But it is vital that we do so because it has become a 
symbol to the rest of the world of America's departure from our core 
principles. So I am enthusiastically in support of that provision.
  Another provision would restrict our interrogation activities to 
those techniques that are permitted under the Army Field Manual. In 
effect, it would end our embrace of enhanced interrogation techniques--
indeed, torture.
  In support of this notion, I would cite GEN David Petraeus, the 
Commander of the Multi-National Force in Iraq in 2007, who at the time 
wrote a letter to all U.S. military forces in Iraq. In that letter, he 
said this:

       Some may argue that we would be more effective if we 
     sanctioned torture or other expedient methods to obtain 
     information from the enemy. They would be wrong. Beyond the 
     basic fact that such actions are illegal, history shows that 
     they also are frequently neither useful nor necessary. 
     Certainly, extreme physical action can make someone ``talk;'' 
     however, what the individual says may be of questionable 
     value. In fact, our experience in applying the interrogation 
     standards laid out in the Army Field Manual . . . shows that 
     the techniques in the manual work effectively and humanely in 
     eliciting information from detainees.

  We have heard arguments that, well, you can't really rely on military 
interrogators. They don't really know what they are doing. They are 
amateurish. They need the limitations of the Army Field Manual. By 
contrast, the interrogators of the CIA and of our intelligence 
community are experts and much more sophisticated and adept and don't 
need to have the Army Field Manual restricting them, as if it is some 
sort of a learner's permit for interrogation.
  If you look at the facts, the reverse is actually true. It is the 
military that has officers with literally decades of experience 
interrogating enemy prisoners, interrogating enemy prisoners in 
situations where their fellow soldiers' lives are on the line, where 
men and women will die or live because of the information they are able 
to elicit. Notwithstanding those high stakes, they live by the terms of 
the Army Field Manual. By contrast, we know that the CIA really did not 
know much about interrogations, that when they got into the business, 
they had to learn about it. The place they chose to learn was from the 
SERE Program, a program designed to train American soldiers, airmen, 
sailors and marines who are likely to be captured by enemies that 
engage in torture how to be prepared for that, how to withstand it. So 
for training purposes, to prepare them for these ordeals, they used the 
interrogation techniques of despot, tyrant nations--North Korea, 
Communist China, Soviet Russia. For some reason, that was where our 
intelligence community thought it needed to go for expertise in how you 
interrogate prisoners, never minding the fact that the purpose of those 
despot regimes was not to interrogate prisoners and get actionable 
intelligence information; it was to torture those prisoners so they 
would say things and produce propaganda for those tyrant regimes.
  So the notion that the military is a bunch of amateurs in 
intelligence who need the constraint of the Army Field Manual to 
prevent them from making amateur errors and the CIA is a bunch of 
clever, crafty experts who can operate at a graduate level for all of 
this is absolutely backward.
  The damage that has been done to our country by this decision is, in 
my opinion, incalculable. When I think of the choice that was made to 
go this road, I am reminded of a phrase of Winston Churchill's. He 
describes a bad and dangerous decision that leads to worsening 
consequences in this way. He describes it as going down ``the stairway 
which leads to a dark gulf. It is a fine broad stairway at the 
beginning, but after a bit the carpet ends. A little farther on, there 
are only flagstones, and a little farther on still these break beneath 
your feet.'' That is where we stand now, in this dark, descending 
stairway, with flagstones crumbling beneath our feet and the world 
looking on in horror at our departure from our core principles. I 
believe this legislation will help turn us back away from that dark and 
descending stairway, back into the light of our own best principles and 
the good will of our fellow nations.
  America has not only suffered grievous and lasting harm from this 
administration's embrace of torture but also from this administration's 
embrace of torture's handmaiden. Torture's handmaiden, of course, is 
secret detention.
  The bill Senator Feinstein and Senator Wyden are proposing would 
require the International Committee for the Red Cross to have access to 
any prisoners held by the intelligence agencies. The ICRC has been 
visiting detainees in connection with armed conflict since 1915, nearly 
a century. In 2007, the ICRC visited over half a million detainees in 
77 different countries to ensure respect for their life, dignity, and 
fundamental right to judicial guarantees. All of those notions are 
enshrined in our own Constitution. They are our national bedrock.
  Thirty-eight retired military leaders, distinguished generals and 
admirals, have concluded that the ICRC access to prisoners held by our 
Government is a ``critical measure to ensure continuing respect for the 
norm that [ICRC] access must be provided to all captives in wartime.'' 
This letter comes from battlefield warriors and intelligence officers 
who participated in every major American conflict from World War II 
until today. One of them, less than 3 years ago, was a member of our 
Joint Chiefs of Staff. They understand that this is important, and they 
understand why.
  If we go down the corridors of history and survey the evil practices 
of tyrant regimes, we find one of their most notorious methods of 
coercion and subjugation is holding prisoners secretly and 
incommunicado. From the oubliettes of the Bourbon Kings of France to 
Calcutta's Black Hole, from the Gestapo's secret prisons to the Soviet 
gulags, from medieval dungeons to the bamboo cages of the Cambodian 
killing fields, secret and anonymous imprisonment has always been the 
hallmark of the despot. And now the Bush administration has stamped 
America with this shameful mark.
  Our military leaders who are in the best position to judge are 
pushing back and saying ``enough.'' Why do they do that? I think they 
do that because they are not beguiled by the force of arms. They live 
with the likelihood of armed conflict, of injuries, of fatalities. They 
understand that we engage in that to defend principles, and to give 
away those principles without a shot fired accomplishes the very harm 
that we have a military, that we have intelligence services to protect 
us from.
  What is it, we ask ourselves, that makes our country great? Whence 
cometh our strength? For centuries, America has been called a ``shining 
city on a hill.'' We are a lamp in the darkness to other nations. One 
of our greatest Senators, our friend Ted Kennedy, on the occasion of I 
believe his 15,000th vote in this institution said America is not a 
land, it is a promise. Torture, anonymous detention, and secret cells 
break that promise, extinguish that lamp, and darken that city on a 
  Our strength as Americans comes from the fact that we stand for 
something. Our strength comes from the aspirations of millions of 
people around the globe who want to be like us, who want their country 
to be like ours, who want to believe in what we believe in. Our 
strength comes when we embody the hopes and dreams of mankind. Our 
strength comes, as President Clinton said, not from the example of our 
power but from the power of our example.
  I believe Senator Feinstein's legislation will restore across this 
darkening world the power of America's example, turn us back from that 
dark and descending stairway, and restore us to the place where America 
belongs as an ideal and an example for other nations. I appreciate 
Senator Feinstein's hard work in putting this legislation together. I 
appreciate the support of Senator Wyden.

[[Page S161]]

  Many months ago, I offered the first amendment in the Intelligence 
Committee that would apply the Army Field Manual to interrogation 
techniques used by our intelligence agencies, and Senator Feinstein was 
kind enough to cosponsor that amendment. We worked together in 
conference to get that amendment passed into legislation that was 
subsequently vetoed. I submitted the International Committee of the Red 
Cross access provision last year.
  I cannot find words strong enough to explain the strength of my view 
about the things we sacrifice for whatever small, short-term, tactical 
intelligence advantage we may achieve from torture and secret cells, 
assuming there even are any. Most intelligence professionals believe 
that what you get from torture is people who will say anything to get 
away from the pain. But let's assume there is some value to it for the 
sake of argument. I cannot find words strong enough to explain how 
overwhelmed that small tactical value is by the loss of our reputation 
and our standing and the confidence and trust of our friends and allies 
when we engage in behaviors that have been associated with despots and 
tyrants and the worst of history's regimes.
  Let's put this behind us. Let's support this bill. As we go through 
this time of transition in American Government, let's also go through a 
time of transition in America's reputation in the world.
  I yield the floor. I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Pryor). The clerk will call the roll.
  The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. HARKIN. I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum 
call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER (Ms. Cantwell). Without objection, it is so