December 2, 2005

ODD THAT THE CONSTITUTION ASSUMES THE UNTHINKABLE:

Bushwhacking the Constitution:
U.S. Senate proves as disdainful of the Constitution as George W. Bush. Be forewarned. (Nat Hentoff, November 28th, 2005, Village Voice)

These are weighty and momentous considerations that go far beyond the detainees at Guantánamo. . . .[This amendment] . . . takes away jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of the United States. It is untenable and unthinkable and ought to be rejected.

Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Arlen Specter , on the floor of the Senate, November 15, objecting to an amendment to the defense authorization bill by Lindsey Graham, Carl Levin, and Jon Kyl that would effectively close our federal courts to any charges of abuse, including tort ure, of Guantánamo prisoners. The amendment passed 84 to 14.

I learned long ago not to say the sky is falling when it's only raining. However, the hard rain on our fundamental liberties....


"our"?

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 2, 2005 7:52 AM
Comments

What is happening is exacly what the war powers cases say is supposed to happen: Congress is expressly authorizing the Executive to handle the matter.

There's a war on. Whlle men fight the Courts don't want to get involved. I continue to disagree that H.C. is unavailable to aliens. OTC, war powers law applies to citizens and non-citizens alike. It is the exercise of the war power that trumps turning national survival into a sore-neck, slip-fall case, not the circumstance of the detainee's citizenship.

Posted by: Lou Gots at December 2, 2005 8:51 AM

Well, if you're among the 14, then it might seem that the sky is falling.

Of course, Clinton, Reid, Schumer, and Kerry voted yes, so Mr. Hentoff is left with Joe Biden, Robert Byrd, and Dick Durbin as his compadres on this issue. Not a good place to be.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 2, 2005 8:58 AM

As a First Amendment absolutist, it's not surprising to see Hentoff take this stance. But it still won't get him in the good graces of the left after his years of writing on the abortion issue.

Posted by: John at December 2, 2005 9:58 AM
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