The latest Associated Press article illustrates just how irrelevant Sen. Mark Udall really is when it comes to all things NSA. Sure, he’s been screaming from the mountaintops (see, because he likes to talk more about climbing mountains than actually representing Coloradans in DC) how he’s been the watchdog on NSA, but that’s only a convenience narrative written after the hard work has been done by others. If it were not for Edward Snowden, Udall’s unwillingness to do anything more than write letters means we might still be in the dark about the NSA. As The AP writes:
The program was revealed last year by former NSA analyst Edward Snowden.
…Outrage over the programs that Snowden publicized brought together conservatives and liberals who favor civil liberties
Almost six hundred words and not a single mention of Udall. On top of that, the piece reveals another big aspect of how Udall has failed Colorado. For all his crowing, Udall has yet to advance a single piece of legislation on the NSA. Now, House Republicans are doing what Udall can’t.
The House is poised to take the first significant step to change the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of American phone records,
…The bill, scheduled for a House vote Thursday, instructs the phone companies to hold the records for 18 months and let the NSA search them in terrorism investigations in response to a judicial order.
It’s Ground Hog’s Day for Udall as last month he failed to get fellow Democrats to advance a liquid natural gas bill he sponsored, while Rep. Cory Gardner did so quite easily over in the House. Udall clearly does not have that much sway with his colleagues, while Gardner is so well-liked by his fellow legislators, they are willing to go out of their way to help. It will be in Colorado’s best interest to have a Senator is actually able to get stuff done. Udall has had six years to get something (anything!) done, yet has nothing to show for it. It’s time for Colorado to move on.