He won’t confirm or deny it, but Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell may be among what 28Pages.org suspects is a scandalously high number of incumbent federal legislators who haven’t bothered reading the classified, 28-page finding on foreign government support of the 9/11 hijackers.
McConnell and staff have now twice refused to answer the two simple questions 28Pages.org is posing to every senator and representative:
- Have you read the 28 pages?
- If not, have you requested permission from your intelligence committee to do so?
Considering legislators familiar with the classified finding say it has direct bearing on the ongoing confrontation with radical Islam in the Middle East—and can inform the life-and-death decisions of federal policymakers—failure by any representative or senator to read the 28 pages may well amount to gross negligence. That’s particularly evident when you reflect on the fact that a 19-year old Marine last week became the first servicemember to die in recently-launched operations against ISIS.
McConnell’s silence on these two simple questions gives reason to doubt he’s taken a half hour break from re-election fundraising and campaigning to read the 28 pages—and there’s an even stronger indication that he doesn’t want you to read them either.
McConnell Blocked Senate Declassification Push
Today, the primary focus of the growing, bipartisan drive to declassify the 28 pages is House Resolution 428, which urges the president to declassify the finding. Meanwhile, the House sponsors of H.Res.428 are working to find a senator to introduce a comparable resolution in their own chamber.
It wouldn’t be the first time a senator pursued a legislative push to declassify the 28 pages. In 2003, then-Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) twice introduced amendments to Senate bills with language similar to that of H.Res.428. Each time, his effort to help give the American people the information they need to reach informed decisions on foreign policy were thwarted via procedural maneuvers by initiated by McConnell. (You can read the transcripts of the debate on the Senate floor here and here.)
We recently wrote that, despite having been repeatedly and intriguingly urged by Congressmen Walter Jones, Stephen Lynch and Thomas Massie to read the 28 pages, it appears the great majority of federal legislators have inexplicably chosen to remain in a state of willful ignorance regarding intelligence that bears directly on the ongoing “war on terror.”
Does McConnell’s silence indicate he’s among those willfully ignorant incumbents? As Kentucky voters weigh McConnell’s job performance–in deciding between him and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes—it should arguably be the foremost question on their minds.
28Pages.org is a nonpartisan resource for the movement to declassify the 28 pages. This piece on the Republican McConnell was preceded by a similar critique of Arizona Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick.