…could teach George Bush a lesson or two:
While the British terror suspects were hatching their plot, the Bush administration was quietly seeking permission to divert $6 million that was supposed to be spent this year developing new homeland explosives detection technology.
The department failed to spend $200 million in research and development money from past years, forcing lawmakers to rescind the money this summer.
The administration also was slow to start testing a new liquid explosives detector that the Japanese government provided to the United States earlier this year.
The British plot to blow up as many as 10 American airlines on trans-Atlantic flights was to involve liquid explosives.
Hawley said Homeland Security now is going to test the detector in six American airports. “It is very promising technology and we are extremely interested in it to help us operationally in the next several years,” he said.
The administration’s most recent budget request also mystified lawmakers. It asked to take $6 million from Homeland S&T’s 2006 budget that was supposed to be used to develop explosives detection technology and instead divert it to cover a budget shortfall in the Federal Protective Service, which provides security around government buildings.
Sens. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., and Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., the top two lawmakers for Senate homeland appropriations, rejected the idea shortly after it arrived late last month, Senate leadership officials said. [Emphasis mine]
Ok, so how do the Republifascists spin this to make it seem like John Murtha’s fault?