We love torture, yes we do...

The US is one step closer to OKing a new bill that limits the rights of detainees and, according to Democrats, may result in continued torture of terror suspects. Today's 253-168 vote in the House of Representatives will be followed by likely passage of a Senate version of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 [pdf]. The New York Times reports that Democrats oppposed the bill 5-to-1:

Said Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio: "This bill is everything we don't believe in."

The legislation would establish a military court system to prosecute terror suspects, a response to the Supreme Court ruling last June that Congress' blessing was necessary. While the bill would grant defendants more legal rights than they had under the administration's old system, it nevertheless would eliminate rights usually granted in civilian and military courts.

The measure also provides extensive definitions of war crimes such as torture, rape and biological experiments -- but gives Bush broad authority to decide which other techniques U.S. interrogators can legally use. The provisions are intended to protect CIA interrogators from being prosecuted for war crimes.
Amnesty International opposed the bill's broad language. AI's Larry Cox issued a statement that the bil could be interpreted to allow "the administration authority to continue secret prisons, interrogation techniques that have long been considered torture, immunity for those responsible for torture, and cruel and ill-treatment of prisoners."

Here in Minnesota, four Republicans and one Democrat supported the bill:
Mark Kennedy
Gil Gutknecht
Colin Peterson (D)
Jim Ramstad
John Kline

Only Minnestoa Democrats Martin Sabo, Jim Oberstar, and Betty McCollum opposed the bill.

How did your representative vote?

No comments: