Sunday, June 15, 2008

McCain's Position on Justice

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled twice now that detainees held without charge at GITMO have rights to demand in civilian courts that their detention is justified. Last Thursday, the majority again ruled in favor of habeas corpus. Unbelievably, John McCain was against this decision.

Habeas corpus is one of the embedded, bedrock values of America known and respected across the world. That is, until the Bush administration demolished it in the form of the Military Commissions Act. John McCain thinks the decision of the highest court in the land is one of the worst decisions they could have made.
"John McCain,..... told a crowd of supporters in New Jersey Friday that the Supreme Court’s latest Guantanamo Bay ruling is “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.”
McCain doesn't seem to understand the basic tenets of our Constitution, and that should deeply worry people. His reaction to a reinstitution of habeas corpus shows a deep disregard for the law and for civil rights.

Hillary Clinton, in contrast, said this in a speech in April:
"I’ll end the use of signing statements to rewrite the laws that Congress has passed. I’ll shut down Guantanamo, disavow torture and restore the right of Habeas Corpus."
She understands the value of the most basic laws allowing people to know why they have been incarcerated. So does Obama, who also stated that this was the right decision. Habeas corpus is a fundamental American right, and John McCain is apparently against it! Does he know the U.S. Constitution's suspension clause states:
"The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."
Principles of habeas corpus are also embodied in the 5th, 6th 7th amendments to the Constitution. Habeas gives people the rights to know their accuser, to know what the charges against them are, and related Constitutional rights that guarantee the right to a speedy and fair trial. This means John McCain wants to preserve an unfair system of justice for prisoners, (and by proxy, for everyone).
"After first insisting that federal law clearly and unambiguously outlaw “torture,” McCain suddenly caved to White House pressure on the MCA, allowing the Administration to insert into the law a clause that effectively allows (and, indeed, legally buttresses the efforts of) the executive branch to implement torture as a means of interrogation.

Without McCain’s pander, there would have been no bad law for the Court to strike down last week."
Both Hillary and Obama voted against the Military Commissions Act. But McCain helped write it. It's clear that McCain doesn't respect the rights guaranteed to people by the Constitution of the United States. If that doesn't indicate what type of a president he would be, nothing does!


Anonymous said...

A vote for McCain is a vote for humans rights abuse. He seems to have forgotten whatever it was that he learned from his own POW experience in his zeal to be president. If he's done that, don't you think he'd pander to Hillary supporters to get some votes?

atdnext said...


Again, well said. What happened to McBush? He was originally for habeas corpus... But now he's against it? He was originally against torture... But now he's for it?

Why the flip-flops? Shouldn't he know better?

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