Saturday, June 14, 2008

Justice, the MCA, and Boumediene

This Thursday the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision ruled that the alleged terrorists being held at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba have a constitutional right to challenge their detentions in federal courts. 

View the links for analysis. Two initial thoughts: 1) The narrow margin of the decision, 5 to 4, shows how the results of the upcoming Presidential election are so very important, since the next President will get to nominate one (or more) SCOTUS justices… 2) This is being portrayed as a defeat and rebuke to President Bush. However, the Military Commissions Act that was the subject of this ruling passed the House and Senate handily, 253-168 and 65-34 respectively. Perhaps some of the bill’s backers need to feel some electoral heat!

Boumediene et al. v. Bush et al. (Supreme Court opinion pdf)
Boumediene articles/discussions on Opinio Juris
Justices: Gitmo detainees can challenge detention in U.S. courts
Supreme Court restores habeas corpus, strikes down part of MCA
Graham: Amend Constitution to overturn court's ruling
Obama, McCain Respond to Guantanamo Bay Ruling
More SCOTUS reax

H.R. 6166: Military Commissions Act of 2006
U.S. Senate Roll Call Votes 109th Congress – S.3930

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