In a key ruling defending the freedoms of Americans, a federal judge on Wednesday granted a preliminary injunction blocking the president from gaining the power to detain citizens indefinitely without charge.
Judge Kathleen Forrest ruled that Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act “failed to pass constitutional muster.”
The act, signed into law on New Year’s Eve, grants the U.S. military the authority to exercise police powers on U.S. soil, including the ability to detain “until the end of hostilities” anybody the president feels has supported al Qaida, the Taliban or related groups.
Forrest said the section was unconstitutional because it could be used to block political dissent. In her statement, she pointed out that the provision could have been made constitutional with changes and clarifications in the definitions of the crimes it seeks to cover.
After the NDAA was signed into law, Democrat Sen. Carl Levin pointed out that the law originally had the legal language to limit the president’s ability to hold people indefinitely, but it was President Obama himself who demanded that American citizens be included under the detention law and that the president himself have exclusive authority to invoke the law.
But in his signing statement, Obama posed as the defender of citizens’ rights, claiming he had forced Congress to add language to protect “the safety, security and liberty of the American people.”
He wrote: ìI want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens. My Administration will interpret section 1021 in a manner that ensures that any detention it authorizes complies with the Constitution, the laws of war, and all other applicable law.î
Considering it was Obama himself who demanded the exclusive power to detain U.S. citizens, I’m not inclined to believe his protestations of innocence.
Also in light of the recent executive orders authorizing his Cabinet to take control of resources in “preparation” for national defense, and authorizing his czars and other appointees to meddle in local communities, it points to a definite trend for this administration.
Though Obama and his pawns would like you to believe his executive orders are just business as usual, this administration has an unhealthy interest in assembling an array of authoritarian powers over its citizens — “just in case.”