National Defense Authorization Act
In Congress this week the National Defense Authorization Act passed the House and Senate, whereupon it was sent to the President for his signature. This bill is important because it provides pay and benefits for our troops, buys the weapons and equipment they need to do their job, and funds research to help meet future threats to our national security.
While this bill is central to a functioning national security, there was a misunderstanding regarding the detainee provisions. This provision does not address or extend new authority to detain U.S. Citizens. What it does do is affirm that the military may lawfully detain individuals who are engaged in armed conflict with the United States, as stated by the Authorization of the Use of Military Force. The bill adds explicit protections for American citizens as well as a prohibition against the President waving such protections.
This bill strengthens our ability to fight the War on Terror and enables a continued, steadfast national security plan.
Read the Bill*
*Detainee provision exempting U.S. citizens: page 655 & 657
Mike Conaway voted for the bill. So did John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison. I've dug into the background on the bill but there's too much legaleze for me. When I read the page indicated by Mike Conaway above, it seems rather straightforward that this will not pertain to American citizens or legal residents and that the President would also be resticted from using the waiver option against American citizens or legal residents.
But since when was anything straightforward coming out of D.C.? So I got to looking at who was objecting and what they were objecting to.
- Montana has initiated a recall of their representatives who voted for the bill. " Montana residents William Crain and Stewart Rhodes are spearheading the drive. Mr. Crain is an artist. Mr. Rhodes is an attorney, Yale Law School graduate, and the national president of the organization Oath Keepers, who are military and law enforcement officers, both former and active duty, who vow to uphold their Oath to the US Constitution and to disobey illegal orders which constitute attacks on their fellow citizens." Source here. Oathkeepers, of course, has been listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Now, the SPLC is a hate group unto itself; however, DHS is using them as a resource and published the directives sent out to all law enforcement indicating returning veterans, people believing in the Constitution or pro-life, people having Ron Paul bumper stickers, people wanting our borders secure, people with beliefs againt homosexuality, etc., might be terrorists based on the info given them by SPLC.
- Here's a video of a Judge Napolitano report on it.
- And, here's what Ron Paul has to say on it. No matter what you think about Ron Paul, you can't argue with his 100% adherance to voting Constitutionally in all his years as a Congressman.
- Personally, I don't know what to think about this bill. Viscerally, I don't like it.