The following short video was captured in Chester, SC at a GOP fish fry. The interviewer gave me permission to use this recording of Senator Lindsey Graham defending his statement on the Senate floor, "Shut up! You don't get a lawyer!" in reference to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
Instead of clearing things up and actually doing what is right and saying, "You know, that was a stupid thing to say and on top of it unconstitutional just like the bill we passed," Senator Lindsey Graham simply went on to defend his statement to the American people. We'll note his explanation of what he meant by his statement.
First, Lindsey Graham said,
"When someone is captured and involved in an Al Qaeda attack on the country, they can be held as an enemy combatant, not a common criminal (emphasis mine). So if a guy went to Pakistan.....trained....came back....went to a mall and started shooting people, when you grab the guy, we should hold him as an enemy combatant, under the law of war."
OK Senator Graham, first you are not even addressing the main issue. You are talking as if as soon as there is a mall shooting that it would be known that the guy has been trained to be an enemy combatant. Are you saying that our government would have that information on the fly as soon as it happened? If that is the case, then wouldn't that make our government complicit in such an attack? If our government is stupid enough to track a man leaving the US to Pakistan, know who he is dealing with and training with and then allow him back in the States I think those who allow such are in fact part of the terrorist problem and they should be arrested and tried.
In either case, they are both criminal acts. You can call it enemy combatants but the reality is it is a crime. What if the person was not even affiliated with Al Qaeda? What if they were a white supremacist group that hid up in the mountains and came and did the same thing? Seems like you want to make Al Qaeda out to be the boogeyman, instead of realizing they are a monster created by the CIA. Also, just so you know, you guys are having a bit of trouble actually declaring war, so the use of the term enemy combatant
Only a full time politician would levy the phraseology "the law of war." He has no concept of warfare and so I am not going to address that in this post.
"and if he says, 'I want my lawyer,' no this is not a crime, this is an act of war we are investigating, but everybody captured under that circumstance will get to go to a judge, with habeas hearing and the judge would have to agree that the guy is an enemy combatant..."
You can be held under the Patriot Act without seeing a federal judge. You will be held simply because you are perceived as a threat and have committed a crime, oh I'm sorry, you are an enemy combatant, which technically if you do that on US soil is a crime against the citizens of the country, sort of like those in the House who passed the NDAA and the guy who signed it.
What is the most frightening part of any of this is Lindsey Graham seems to be oblivious as to how government actually works. He may think that it will keep a check on its power, but the natural tendency of government is to abuse its power. It is just its nature to do so.
I wonder if Lindsey Graham understands that American citizens can and will be targeted under the NDAA and claimed to be terrorists, not given due process and sent to prison or worse, all because they have been deemed to be a terrorist. Even by Graham's own words, he is stating that the hypothetical person caught would already be known to have affiliations with terrorists. Again, would government be complicit in the terrorist's actions? I think so.
Lindsey Graham said he didn't want people who had just committed a terrorist attack to be told they could have a lawyer or be read Miranda rights. He said that everyone captured like this "could not be held without going before a federal judge."
Yes they can Lindsey. It's part of the Patriot Act which has morphed into NDAA. Hello? Under the Patriot Act a person can be detained for seven days and during that time the Attorney General must initiate removal (deportation) proceedings or charge the person with a crime. NDAA simply becomes more of the same extending the long arm of the law to it's own citizens in a manner that this country has never seen before.
Senator Lindsey Graham and those like him who represent the people of their states should be standing for the Constitution and the rights of the people. Instead, they seek to remove the liberty and rights the Constitution is to provide. You may say, "Yes, Tim, but they are doing this only to the terrorists." Really? You know this for sure? What if the federal government considered your political views a threat? What if then they took it a step further and said that they considered those views to be the views of new terrorists? They have said this about groups other than Al Qaeda including Christians, Constitutionalists, Ron Paul Supporters, those who talk too much about the Constitution and those who promote the Second Amendment. My fellow Americans, be on your guard against a tyrannical government.
Here's Graham's statement from the floor of the US Senate: