Obama Wants Indefinite Detention Power
Once again, President Obama is adopting a policy of the Bush administration that Candidate Obama ran against. This time, it’s indefinite detention. Dafna Linzer and Peter Finn for WaPo:
Obama administration officials, fearing a battle with Congress that could stall plans to close the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, are crafting language for an executive order that would reassert presidential authority to incarcerate terrorism suspects indefinitely, according to three senior government officials with knowledge of White House deliberations.
Such an order would embrace claims by former president George W. Bush that certain people can be detained without trial for long periods under the laws of war. Obama advisers are concerned that an order, which would bypass Congress, could place the president on weaker footing before the courts and anger key supporters, the officials said.
After months of internal debate over how to close the military facility in Cuba, White House officials are increasingly worried that reaching quick agreement with Congress on a new detention system may be impossible. Several officials said there is concern in the White House that the administration may not be able to close the prison by the president’s January deadline.
Change we can believe in.
It should be noted that “A White House official” disputes this report, saying, “There is no draft executive order. The task force has not finished its work on these issues.” But this has been bubbling up long enough that it’s at very least a major trial balloon.
Interestingly, the Obama campaign website, now renamed “Organizing for America,” has finally taken down the old detailing of issue positions that was still there a week or so ago. My guess is that they got tired of people comparing their actions in office to their campaign rhetoric.