Monday, November 10, 2008

Turning Back the Clock

The Center for Constitutional Rights has initiated a campaign, “100 Days to Restore the Constitution.” Chief among its goals:

"Ending Torture, Rendition, and Illegal Detention; Protecting Dissent; Abolishing Preventive Detention; Limiting State Secrets Privilege; Restoring the War Powers Act; Stopping Warrantless Wiretapping; Rolling Back Executive Power.
Among its specific policy proposals for the new administration to achieve these goals, outlined in this brochure.
Close Guantanamo and either try people in US federal courts or resettle them safely in a country where they do not risk persecution or torture.

Work to repeal the PATRIOT act and prevent the emergence of any additional similar legislation.

Pledge to veto any legislation creating preventive detention or national security courts as alternatives to the existing criminal justice system.

Work with Congress to pass legislation making it clear military contractors are accountable for their abuses.

Withdraw from Iraq and end the occupation.

Pledge to end all secret surveillance programs not reviewed by either the courts of Congressional committees.

Recognize and respect international law and join the International Criminal Court.
Two things of note:

1) Some of these proposals are written in the language of deed, some in the language of word. I'm not sure what it means for the CCR to propose that Obama "withdraw from Iraq" but only "pledge" to end surveillance programs.

2) Useful to distinguish the truly novel proposals here, like joining the ICC, from the same things Obama has already pledged to do on the campaign trail, such as reverse any of Bush's policies he deems unconstitutional.


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