The gist of Bush's defense, as stated at his press conference today
, was that they needed to react "quick to detect and prevent" terrorist threats. They simply could not waste any time obtaining warrants -- which may hold some water, if not for this little tidbit within the FISA code
Under "extraordinary" circumstances, the government also can wait 72 hours after beginning wiretaps to get a warrant, but the administration did not seek to do that under the special program, which monitors the international communications of some people inside the United States.
Mr. President, what say you?