President Barack Obama must surely rue the day he appointed Katherine Forrest to the federal bench. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest issued a preliminary injunction against Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the section that gives the President “the absolute power to arrest and detain citizens of the United States [and of other countries] without their being informed of any criminal charges, without a trial on the merits of those charges, and without a scintilla of the due process safeguards protected by the Constitution of the United States,” in the words of The New American’s Joe Wolverton, II. Wolverton should know: He was a member of the legal team representing the plaintiffs.
After billionaire Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin drew global attention to the growing number of Americans giving up their U.S. citizenship to preserve their wealth and escape burdensome IRS regulations, two Democrat Senators outraged by the accelerating trend introduced the “Ex-PATRIOT” Act to get revenge — and, of course, to confiscate more wealth for the government to squander.
Critics of the legislation, dubbed the "Expatriation Prevention by Abolishing Tax-Related Incentives for Offshore Tenancy" Act, mocked the lawmakers and even the idea as “petty,” saying it would likely be unconstitutional, too. However, other analysts warned that U.S. policy makers were embarrassing the nation as well as traveling a dangerous path toward totalitarianism and even “banana-republic” status. And it should be halted immediately before the situation spirals completely out of control, critics said.
Last the week the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit denied a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) aimed at discovering the content of all electronic correspondence between Google and the National Security Agency (NSA).
The source of the controversy was a "highly sophisticated and targeted” cyber attack targeting Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists in 2010.
According to U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro, America is now fully prepared for a military strike on Iran. Unbeknownst to Shapiro, his remarks were recorded and aired on Israeli television on Wednesday night, though the comments were not meant to be heard by the general public.
Judge Katherine Forrest of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York issued a preliminary injunction on Wednesday preventing the Obama administration from exercising the indefinite detention authority ostensibly granted the President by Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2011.
On Wednesday the Senate voted down five budget proposals, reflecting gridlock and unwillingness to face reality. Four of the budget proposals were presented by Republican senators, while the fifth was based on President Obama’s budget.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is huddling with Senate Democrats to launch a joint effort to enact campaign finance reform. McCain told The Hill that he had "been having discussions with Sen. [Sheldon] Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and a couple others on the issue,” noting, “I want it to be balanced and address the issue of union contributions as well as other outside contributions.”
Evidence strongly suggests George Zimmerman, the man who shot Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla., told the truth when he said he shot Martin in self defense. On Tuesday, ABC News released the medical report that details Zimmerman’s injuries. It is thoroughly consistent with Zimmerman’s claim that Martin savagely attacked him, forcing Zimmerman to pull his gun and shoot Martin.
As the Ron Paul strategy marches on, some wonder whether his thousands of supporters will accept the inevitability of a Romney nomination and throw their weight behind the former Massachusetts governor. Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Texan's campaign has repeatedly affirmed that Ron Paul isn’t going away and that he has neither ended nor suspended his campaign for the presidency. In fact, Rep. Paul’s drive to accumulate delegates at the state Republican conventions seems to be gaining momentum.
House speaker John Boehner decided on Tuesday to fire the first round in the coming battle to deal with the huge tax increases taking place after the first of the year by setting the terms for the debt ceiling debate. In a speech at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s 2012 Fiscal Summit in Washington Boehner said that any discussion would revolve around his “Boehner principle” — every dollar of additional debt increase for the federal government must be matched by an equal or greater reduction in government spending.
Despite Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta's assurances to the contrary, U.S. troops will be sent back to Yemen to help the Yemeni government track and kill militants associated with al-Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula (AQAP).