Wednesday, January 5, 2011

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em

Or something like that:

Dafna Linzer reports that, in the face of Congress' unprecedented decision to cut off funding for terrorism trials of Guantanamo detainees, the White House is preparing a signing statement that will contest those limits. Liberals pounced on President George W. Bush's use of such statements to essentially disregard the law. Ironically, if the Obama administration goes forward with this, it will be doing so in order to undo one of the most visible remaining legacies of the Bush administration's terrorism policies.

I think this is a crappy approach to a ridiculous power-grab by congress. I guess I side with Spencer Ackerman on this one. A signing statement is not the way to go. This is an argument that can and should be won on the merits. 

My position on detainees is well-documented at this point. I am in continual disbelief that the responsible centrist position in this country has so decisively turned against civil liberties. Unfortunately, there don't seem to be any high-profile figures willing to make a full-throated defense of civil liberties in this country. It's going to take more than the ACLU to win this fight.

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