The NDAA was covered extensively last year. The National Defense Authorization Act or NDAA is the defense budget/expenditure bill which is passed each year.
What was dramatically different this past year was the inclusion of Sections 1031 and 1032 (previously titled 1021 and 1022) which provided for the indefinite detention without trial of American citizens judged to be involved in terrorism or “belligerent acts” against the US.
The clauses had nothing to do with military expenditures but we were told they would protect us from terrorists.
Habeas corpus should never be considered a threat to our national security. We must never give it up. There has to be some limit to how much freedom we will give up for “security” or perceived security.
Contempt for these sections was one of those rare times when people on the left and right agreed. Their calls for its elimination were ignored.
Rand Paul has led the minority resistance against indefinite detention of US citizens for almost a year.
Speaking before the Senate on November 28th, Senator Paul said, “If you don’t have a right to trial by jury, you do not have due process. You do not have a Constitution. What are you fighting against and for if you throw the Constitution out? When zealots of the government arrest suspects or radicals without warrants, hold them without trial, deny them access to counsel or admission of bail, we have shorn the Bill of Rights of its sanctity.
Senator Paul then supported Amendment #3018 which was sponsored by California Sen. Feinstein and Mike Lee of Utah. It provides that, “an authorization to use military force, a declaration of war, or any similar authority shall not authorize the detention without charge or trial of a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States.”
It passed 67-29 in a rare show of unanimity in the Senate.
It was a partial win in that it didn’t repeal the clauses entirely, but it was a good win for freedom.
Read more at the [Washington Times]