In the midst of recent national controversy surrounding government surveillance of the public, a recent Freedom of Information Act request to the Nebraska State Patrol has exposed evidence that TransCanada provided trainings to federal agents and local Nebraska police to suppress nonviolent activists protesting the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline by arresting them on “anti-terrorism statutes.” The presentation slides, obtained by grassroots landowner advocacy group Bold Nebraska, target Tar Sands Blockade activists by name.
“This is clear evidence of the collusion between TransCanada and the federal government assisting local police to unlawfully monitor and harass political protestors,” said Lauren Regan, legal coordinator for Tar Sands Blockade and executive director of the Civil Liberties Defense Center. “These documents expose the truth that the government is giving the nod to unlawful corporate spying. By slinging false allegations against peaceful activists in this presentation, TransCanada puts them at risk of unwarranted prosecution.”
The largely symbolic vote demonstrated the deep GOP opposition to the bill, but all day political observers expected it to put Democratic divisions over the President’s approach to bolstering the economy into sharp relief as well. In the end, two Democratic senators, Sens. Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Jon Tester (D-MT) voted with Republicans to continue the filibuster.
With Democrats like Ben Nelson, who needs Republicans? The way Majority Leader Reid lets Nelson and Leiberman go scot free with all of the transgressions they’ve commit against their reputed caucus makes Reid look flaccid and inept.