AUGUSTA, Maine (March 19, 2012) – The Maine legislature joined the fight against indefinite detention provisions without due process written into the National Defense Authorization Act this week.
On Monday, the Maine House adopted HP1396 on a voice vote, a resolution calling on the president and Congress to “amend the National Defense Authorization Act to clarify that any provisions contained within will not deprive United States citizens of the rights of due process.”
The resolution focuses on ambiguity in sections 1021 and 1022, which could allow for the indefinite detention of people in the United States.
The disagreements and uncertainty in interpretation of the law has raised significant concerns about due process for United States citizens; and the prospect of the indefinite detention of United States citizens violates, without due process of law, basic rights enshrined in the United States Constitution, such as the right to seek a writ of habeas corpus, the right to petition for a redress of grievances, the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures and the right to counsel.
Rep. Richard Cebra (R-Naples) sponsored the resolution, and a long list of representatives and senators signed on as cosponsors.
“Last year, I sponsored Maine’s Tenth Amendment Resolution in response to the constant federal trampling on our state’s rights on a number of fronts, he said. “The NDAA 2012 Resolution is in response to the federal government trampling on our individual rights in that law. I believe it is one of the state legislature’s functional, foundational pillars to constantly keep the federal government in check and to respond when her citizens’ constitutional rights are threatened. ”
According to Maine Tenth Amendment Center director Chris Dixon, the primary opposition to the resolution came not from those opposed to challenging NDAA detention provisions, but from lawmakers wanting to expand the language to cover all “persons,” not just citizens.
The Maine Senate will take up the resolution this week.
Dixon said he hopes the legislature will take the next step and consider a non-compliance act to block any federal attempt to kidnap people within Maine’s borders.
“This is a golden opportunity for bipartisan support of the Constitution, which doesn’t happen very often,” Dixon said.
This brings the total number of states considering action against NDAA detention to 11.
If you live in Maine, the time to act is now. Contact your senator and politely insist that they pass HP1369.
Then ask your senator and representative to take the next step and approve NDAA non-compliance legislation.
Click HERE for Maine legislator contact information.
To track NDAA nullification legislation across the U.S., click HERE.
If you don’t live in Maine and your state has not taken steps to stop kidnapping under the NDAA, you can find model Liberty Preservation Act legislation that you can propose to your state representative or senator HERE.
Michael Maharrey [send him email] is the Communications Director for the Tenth Amendment Center. He proudly resides in the original home of the Principles of '98 - Kentucky. See his blog archive here and his article archive here. He also maintains the blog, Tenther Gleanings.
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