U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis, a Wyoming Republican, recently voted against the renewal of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2013. House Resolution 4310 was ultimately passed by the House in a vote of 315 to 107. Sheridan Media's Chris Foy has the story.
Constitutional experts and civil rights groups have spoken out against the legislation, calling it essentially "codified martial law."
The NDAA allows the federal government to detain U.S. citizens - without charge and indefinitely - if they are suspected of supporting terrorism or if they are suspected of associating with terrorist groups. Terrorist groups are not listed in the NDAA nor is a definition of what being associated with a terrorist organization present in the document.
Representative Lummis said it doesn't matter if we are a nation at war or not - the Constitution and the Bill of Rights always apply. She said the bill simply "falls short" of protecting our constitutional rights.
Lummis stated that the detention of American citizens indefinitely and without charge should never take place. The House-Senate conference committee that wrote the bill rejected an alternative that would have protected all citizens and lawful residents from being held in detention indefinitely without charge.
The legislation will now head the Senate for approval.
You can view the full text of H.R. 4310 here.