While speaking at the University of Colorado on Tuesday night, former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft reaffirmed his belief in the Patriot Act and, when asked by an audience member if he’d submit to the controversial “interrogation” tactic of waterboarding, Ashcroft said he would.
Rocky Mountain News:
Ashcroft talked about the events that led to the Patriot Act. The day after 9/11, “the president said, ‘Do not let this happen again,’ ” Ashcroft said.
“Let’s look at the law and see what we can do that would help us. We need to think differently, think outside the box . . . never think outside the Constitution.”
When that comment was met with boos, Ashcroft responded: “Whooping and hollering in an auditorium will not get that done.”
Ashcroft said that the Patriot Act “makes perfect sense.”
This is the kind of thing that we have lived comfortably with in fighting organized crime and drug dealers. We hadn’t understood the need . . . to fight against terror.”
Ashcroft also responded to questions from the audience. The first question came from a woman who asked if Ashcroft would be willing to be subjected to waterboarding.
“The things that I can survive, if it were necessary to do them to me, I would do,” he said.