Carl Levin: Cheney's lying about the CIA memos that allegedly prove torture works

Really? So Cheney put his reputation on the line and started turning up on television everywhere to make the case that enhanced interrogation works, even though he secretly knows it doesn’t? And Obama has the smoking-gun memos in his possession and could destroy Cheney at any moment by declassifying them — and yet hasn’t? And Cheney knows that, and yet still he presses on?

He must be some poker player.

Levin, speaking at the Foreign Policy Association’s annual dinner in Washington on Wednesday, said an investigation by his committee into detainee abuse charges over the use of the techniques — now deemed torture by the Obama administration — “gives the lie to Mr. Cheney’s claims.”

The Michigan Democrat told the crowd that the two CIA documents that Cheney wants released “say nothing about numbers of lives saved, nor do the documents connect acquisition of valuable intelligence to the use of abusive techniques.”

“I hope that the documents are declassified, so that people can judge for themselves what is fact, and what is fiction,” he added…

“Cheney’s world view, which so dominated the Bush years and dishonored our nation, gained a little traction last week — enough to persuade me to address it head-on here tonight,” Levin said. “I do so because if the abusive interrogation techniques that he champions, the face of which were the pictures of abuse at Abu Ghraib, if they are once more seen as representative of America, our security will be severely set back.”

That’s an outright smear, of course, addressed by Cheney himself in his AEI speech last week. Bush backed him up today too, declining to knock Obama but reasserting that “the information we got saved lives.” Exit question: Now that Levin’s on board, we have bipartisan agreement. How about declassifying those memos, champ?