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Representative Wolf on COG, the State of Emergency and Congress’ Failure to Comply With the Law

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In response to the call to action outlined in the article “To All Readers: Help Force Congress To Observe the Law on National Emergencies!!!” by Prof. Peter Dale Scott and former Rep. Dan Hamburg (D-CA), I emailed and faxed Senators Jim Webb (D-VA) and Mark Warner (D-VA), and Representative Frank Wolf (R-VA). In my letter I noted that former President Bush declared a “State of Emergency” on September 14, 2001 and continued it every year since then, and I asked why Congress has not yet met to “consider a vote on a joint resolution to determine whether that emergency shall be terminated", as Section 1622(b) of the National Emergencies Act requires them to do, every six months following such a declaration. I also asked if Congress, the Executive and the Judiciary are “operating according to the Constitution, or according to the rules of Continuity of Government”, as the Continuity of Government procedures enacted on 9/11 have never been formally rescinded.

The only one to respond as of today, May 3, 2009 is Wolf; my letter to him and his response are posted at Scribd.com, and the text of each is pasted below. April 27, Wolf sent me his reply, and included a copy of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) Report, “National Emergency Powers”, but did not answer either of my questions, instead saying;

"Dear Mr. Larson,

Thank you for your recent e-mail requesting information on state of emergency declarations and the National Emergencies Act. I appreciate your comments.

I understand your concerns and have enclosed a report from the Congressional Research Servicing providing information on national emergency powers, which includes a list of all such declarations since 1976. I hope it provides useful information.

Again, thank you for contacting me and I hope you will continue to inform me of issues of importance and concern.

Best wishes,

Sincerely,

Frank R. Wolf
Member of Congress"

This is the text of the letter I faxed to him (and Webb and Warner) on March 24, 2009:

Dear [Representative Wolf, 202-225-0437],

Former President Bush declared a State of Emergency on September 14, 2001 and continued it every year since, including in 2008.

I would like a written response as to why Congress apparently has not met its statutory obligations under Section 1622(b) of the National Emergencies Act, which states that: "Not later than six months after a national emergency is declared, and not later than the end of each six-month period thereafter that such emergency continues, each House of Congress shall meet to consider a vote on a joint resolution to determine whether that emergency shall be terminated."

When will the Houses of Congress meet to consider a vote on this very important issue?

Continuity of Government procedures, enacted on 9/11, have not been formally rescinded; are Congress, the Executive and the Judiciary operating according to the Constitution, or according to the rules of Continuity of Government?

Erik Larson

That looks like a form letter response.

To me that looks like a form letter response. He may not have even seen your letter. That is why the Republican responded and the Democrats did not. The Democrats probably read the letter.

Thanks for your efforts.

Even though you didn't get a satisfying answer from any of them, your letter was probably read and the subject was possibly considered.

A form letter response says, "I don't give an F about the citizens. My energy and loyalty goes to those who can help me get elected again, those with the money and power. I never read any of that crap. It's automated."

The non responses could mean they even give less of an F about the citizens, so they don't even bother to send a form letter. Or it could mean that they read the letter and they have chosen not to respond. If they read the letter and had a good clean answer that said "we are not under COG and this is why" they may have been happy to respond and show that they are "on the ball" protecting their constituents from all enemies foreign and domestic.

Echoes of Iran Contra: I can hear that booming voice of senator Inouye calling down Jack Brooks when he questioned Oliver North about COG.

"I believe that question touches upon a highly sensitive and classified area, so may I request that you not touch upon that sir"

COG is like Fight Club and Skull and Bones.

We could beat

around the bush all day, but it's simple: this is an illegal government.

Rob- "A form letter response

Rob- "A form letter response says, "I don't give an F about the citizens. My energy and loyalty goes to those who can help me get elected again, those with the money and power. I never read any of that crap. It's automated."

"The non responses could mean they even give less of an F about the citizens, so they don't even bother to send a form letter. Or it could mean that they read the letter and they have chosen not to respond. If they read the letter and had a good clean answer that said "we are not under COG and this is why" they may have been happy to respond and show that they are "on the ball" protecting their constituents from all enemies foreign and domestic."

Right- it looks like boiler plate with inserts by staff, who apparently did look into it enough to find and print out the CRS report- which doesn't even mention Section 1622 (b) (forgot to put that in my article). Staff may have discussed it briefly with Wolf before he glanced it over and signed it with his magic marker.

I followed up all 3 faxes/emails with phone calls- none of the staff i spoke to had heard of that clause in the National Emergencies Act, or even seemed aware we were under a state of emergency or that Continuity of Government had been enacted on 9/11.

I'll be refaxing this to Wolf and the Senators- not cuz I really expect them to honor their oath and do their job, but to give them the chance, and to make a public record out of their choices, for the interested public to see.

SnowCrash- "illegal government" - it's stunning- just on this issue- Congress broke the law 14 times from 2002-2008, just by not meeting to consider a vote.

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