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I just tuned into C-SPAN, where Leahy was speaking on preservation of habeas corpus.  He is on fire!  In 30 years in this Senate, I never thought we'd consider doing this.  The constitutional requirements for abolishing habeas corpus aren't present.  Are we so terrified that we will voluntarily give up the freedoms that have always defined America?  He mentioned the line from "A Man For All Seasons" where Sir Thomas More says that he would give the devil himself the benefit of the law. Leahy is showing a combination of outrage, sadness, and disbelief that this is happening. But he clearly realizes that it's GOING to happen, which also seems clear to me.

One thing that I just realized last night is that there is NO sunset provision in this bill, and since the war on terror will never be over, this means that we are PERMANENTLY suspending the writ of habeas corpus for all non-citizens (including permanent resident aliens) who is accused of in any way aiding terrorists.  Who knows how far that will be taken?  Will a visiting professor be arrested and held incommunicado for having the temerity to suggest that our current policies are making things more dangerous for us and the world?

Leahy has now finished, and it switched over to a Repub for a couple of minutes. Feingold now speaking in opposition to the bill itself, and in support of preserving habeas.

Originally posted to leevank on Thu Sep 28, 2006 at 07:52 AM PDT.

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