First, a useful corrective is to find out what Russ Feingold says.
Here is the summary of what Obama said in his press conference (see the Youtube embed in first link above):
- The bill has changed.
First comes the deflection requiring a shit-load of research to verify.
- I think the security threats are similar.
Translation: We are still in grave danger. Meaning he is perpetuating the myth that we are 20sec away from total annihilation at every moment.
- Mmm .. my view on FISA has always been that .. uhm .. the issue of the phone companies per se .. uh .. is not one that override the security interest of the American people.
As Arthur says: Shithead! This is the most blatant lie or dodge or whatever you want to call it! We are not talking about the issue of the phone companies but our fundamental Fourth Amendment rights! He is dodging the issue by obfuscating the language. If he were to say outright: "The threat is such that we need to capture your phone calls and emails. The problem was that Bush did this illegally. I think we just need to do it legally, which this bill does and the other did not." he would end his career.
Again, you need to be reading Glenn on this topic.