Thursday, July 22, 2004

Congress

Unity of Effort: Congress
Congress took too little action to adjust itself or to restructure the executive
branch to address the emerging terrorist threat. Congressional oversight for
intelligence—and counterterrorism—is dysfunctional. Both Congress and the
executive need to do more to minimize national security risks during transi-tions
between administrations.

I had to laugh a bit here, dysfunctional, who'd have thought it?

• For intelligence oversight, we propose two options: either a joint com-mittee
on the old model of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy
or a single committee in each house combining authorizing and
appropriating committees. Our central message is the same: the intel-ligence
committees cannot carry out their oversight function unless
they are made stronger, and thereby have both clear responsibility and
accountability for that oversight.

• Congress should create a single, principal point of oversight and
review for homeland security. There should be one permanent stand-ing
committee for homeland security in each chamber.

• We propose reforms to speed up the nomination, financial reporting,
security clearance, and confirmation process for national security offi-cials
at the start of an administration, and suggest steps to make sure
that incoming administrations have the information they need.

I think these speak for themselves.