Thursday, June 12, 2008

For those illegally held in jail we have a court decision to hail…

posted by Bill Arnett @ 1:56 PM Permalink

…because, unbelievably bush's SCOTUS has ruled that the constitution of the US still means something and that all those illegally detained persons being held by the government may challenge their confinement in US Courts.

THE RULE OF LAW WON. There is hope for America after all!

See this article from the NYT that has the details:
Foreign terrorism suspects held at the Guantánamo Bay naval base in Cuba have constitutional rights to challenge their detention there in United States courts, the Supreme Court ruled, 5 to 4, on Thursday in a historic decision on the balance between personal liberties and national security.

“The laws and Constitution are designed to survive, and remain in force, in extraordinary times,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the court.[…]

In a harsh rebuke of the Bush administration, the justices rejected the administration’s argument that the individual protections provided by the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 and the Military Commissions Act of 2006 were more than adequate..

“The costs of delay can no longer be borne by those who are held in custody,” Justice Kennedy wrote, assuming the pivotal role that some court-watchers had foreseen.

The issues that were weighed in Thursday’s ruling went to the very heart of the separation-of-powers foundation of the United States Constitution. “To hold that the political branches may switch the Constitution on or off at will would lead to a regime in which they, not this court, say ‘what the law is,’ ” Justice Kennedy wrote, citing language in the 1803 ruling in Marbury v. Madison, in which the Supreme Court articulated its power to review acts of Congress.[…]

The ruling on Thursday focused in large part on the centuries old writ of habeas corpus (“you have the body,” in Latin), a means by which prisoners can challenge their incarceration. Noting that the Constitution provides for suspension of the writ only in times of rebellion or invasion, Justice Kennedy called it “an indispensable mechanism for monitoring the separation of powers.”[…]

The head of the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights, which represents dozens of prisoners at Guantánamo, hailed the ruling. “The Supreme Court has finally brought an end to one of our nation’s most egregious injustices,” Vincent Warren, the organization’s executive director, told The Associated Press.[…]

Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts, the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee, applauded the ruling. “Today, the Supreme Court affirmed what almost everyone but the administration and their defenders in Congress always knew,” he said. “The Constitution and the rule of law bind all of us even in extraordinary times of war. No one is above the Constitution.”

In the words of a well-known actor, "Yippee kiyay, motherf*cker!"

This puts the final nail into the coffin of gw bush's illegal detention of so-called "enemy combatants,", restores habeas corpus, and means that as these people are heard in our courts all the other illegal acts of bush, such as endless torture, will be dragged out into the light of day so all Americans and the world will see bush for exactly what he is: a cruel, petty despot that wanted more power than any king or emperor in history, at least since 1200 A.D. and the signing of the Magna Carta, upon which in many instances our own constitution is based.

This is the BIG ONE for the Rule of Law and all Americans owe a debt to the US Supreme Court.

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At 6:20 PM, Blogger The Sailor said...

2 things:
It was a 5-4 decision. (IOW, 4 Supremes think indefinite detention w/o charges or rights is just A-OK.)

It's even more important now that McSame not be elected. He would appoint that fifth element and destroy forever the concept of America the Beautiful.

At 7:24 PM, Anonymous bill arnett said...

I strongly believe that when people realize bush can't designate anyone, much less AMERICAN CITIZENS, as enemy combatants, and hold them forever without charges they will rejoice in this ruling.

The Constitution of the US won today, not any individual defendant.

The SCOTUS pimp-slapped bush today just as the little bitch deserved!


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