It’s not too often you will see an intense debate between two members of the same party, but the issue over allowing the United States military to detain American citizens within our borders (not on a battlefield in a foreign country) as a terrorist is not sitting well with conservative Republican Rand Paul. Here is a brief exchange between the two on the Senate floor:
More from The Hill:
Paul argued the amendment, which is cosponsored by McCain, “puts every single American citizen at risk” and suggested that if the amendment passes, “the terrorists have won.”
“Should we err today and remove some of the most important checks on state power in the name of fighting terrorism, well then the terrorists have won,” Paul argued, “[D]etaining American citizens without a court trial is not American.”
McCain, however, who has spent hours of floor time in the last weeks promoting his amendment, hurried to the floor to defend it against Paul’s onslaught.
“Facts are stubborn things,” McCain repeated from the floor several times. “If the senator from Kentucky wants to have a situation prevail where people who are released go back in to the fight to kill Americans, he is entitled to his opinion.”
McCain’s intentions may be good, but as we all know the road to hell is paved with such intentions. By declaring the United States as a battleground opens up all kinds of civil rights concerns. I have no problem with the military lawfully detaining enemies of the United States during wartime on the battlefield, but that battlefield is not in the United States. Sure, there are or will be people in the United States that want to cause great harm to our country and our government, but since when has that not been a threat? Better yet, when will that not be a threat in the future? Does McCain really want to open up the door to something that will cause the 4th Amendment to be clouded rules and regulations over vague terms such as “battlefield,” “terrorist,” and a “threat,” to the federal government? Hasn’t the Department of Homeland Security put out warnings about right-wing extremists – aka the tea party?
Rand Paul talks about this issue more on Freedom Watch: