Read it here. Some of the juicier bits:
By writing into law for the first time the definition of an “unlawful enemy combatant,” the bill empowers the executive branch to detain indefinitely anyone it determines to have “purposefully and materially” supported anti-U.S. hostilities. Only foreign nationals among those detainees can be tried by the military commissions, as they are known, and sentenced to decades in jail or put to death.
At the same time, the bill immunizes U.S. officials from prosecution for cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment of detainees who the military and the CIA captured before the end […]Full Story... →
It’s official, torture/detainee bill passed the Senate last night. Several different amendments – to provide some kind of oversight program, to reinsert Habeas Corpus into the bill, and to put a five year sunset provision – all failed to pass.
The one thing Osama bin Laden couldn’t do – take away our freedoms – our Republican government enthusiastically did for him. Way to go, jackasses. And while many Democrats did vote against this, they were mostly absent from the discussion about this until voting day, and they were entirely too wishy-washy about the entire boondoggle. Way to go, […]Full Story... →
Staff expands on his statements last night.
You simply cannot inoculate yourself from having a different voting record. And this triangulation BS that Democrats keep trying weakens them. It makes them wishy washy, untrustworthy. That then feeds into the whole narrative the GOP construct anyway.
Sherrod Brown didn’t avoid any of that yesterday. By constantly running from these issues instead of making a true case, once again Democrats look weak in the eyes of the voters. This vote was a net negative for Brown. Instead of worrying about how some swing voters might have voted he now should be […]Full Story... →
An amendment – proposed by Arlen Specter (R-PA) and largely supported by Democrats – to insert habeas corpus protections into the detainment/torture bill failed to pass by a narrow margin today.
The Senate just killed an amendment to ensure federal courts could review the legitimacy of individual’ imprisonment on suspicion of involvement in terrorism. The amendment had been proposed by Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA), chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “It is a fundamental protection woven into the fabric of our Nation,” said Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), who supported the measure. It was defeated 48-51, largely along party lines.
[…]Full Story... →
My previous headline about this was “House approves torture“, but in reality it’s much more sinister than that. Glenn Greenwald points out that no longer is Bush simply assuming the legal authority to throw anyone – including US citizens who have never left the country – in a secret jail without the right to challenge in court, he now actually has that authority (or will, when the bill passes the Senate as expected).
This last point means that even if there were a habeas corpus right inserted back into the legislation (which is unlikely at this point anyway), […]Full Story... →