Saturday, March 21, 2009

O'Dubya on Detainees

Still no good news on the Obama Administration's detainee policy. I frankly don't see a huge shift from the president has the inherent right to detain to the Congress gives the president the right to dictate detention:
Conceding that the Obama Administration has made “a partial retreat” from Bush Administration claims of power to detain indefinitely individuals rounded up in the “war on terrorism,” lawyers for a group of detainees argued on Friday that the new government is still asserting too much authority. The President, they contended, is engaging in “impermissible law-making” by the Executive Branch, intruding on Congress’s powers ....

The new leaders of the Justice Department contended that, while no longer asserting “inherent” presidential power to detain without charges, the President has authority under the resolution Congress enacted after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

But, the detainees’ counsel responded, that resolution (formally, the Authorization for Use of Military Force, or AUMF) does not go that far. “Congress did not intend the AUMF as a blank check to the President,” they argued.

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