February 5, 2013
Thank you for contacting me about the detainee provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). I appreciate hearing from you on this very important issue.
As you may know, when the NDAA came before the Senate, I voted for an amendment that guaranteed that the military could not detain Americans in the U.S. and hold them indefinitely without trial. That amendment, which passed the Senate by a large margin, addressed the worst of several problematic provisions included in last year’s NDAA. Unfortunately, the final version of the bill did not contain the amendment, which made it unacceptable to me. I continue to believe that allowing the military to arrest and detain people in the U.S. denigrates the Bill of Rights and what our Founders intended when they created a civilian, non-military justice system.
Our troops risk their lives every day, and they deserve to have the resources they need to do their jobs. But I voted against the bill because, in its final form, it allowed for the indefinite military detention of Americans captured on U.S. soil – a clear violation of the Bill of Rights.
Thank you again for contacting me, and please don’t hesitate doing so in the future regarding this or any other matter of concern to you.
United States Senator