Secret Drone Strike Memo to Be Released
Move comes as fight over Barron nomination looms
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2014 12:45 AM CDT
This May 2013 photo shows Harvard Law Professor David Barron during a forum at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston.    (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

(Newser) – The Obama administration has decided to release a secret memo explaining its justification for killing American citizens in drone strikes overseas, sources tell the AP. The decision comes as the Senate prepares to vote on the nomination of the memo's author, David Barron, to the 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals. GOP Sen. Rand Paul has vowed to filibuster the nomination of the Harvard professor and former Justice Department official, and some Democratic senators have also called for the public release of the document.

Paul plans to argue that Barron's memos "disrespect the Bill of Rights" and any official that "argues that the president has the power to kill Americans not involved in combat" is "not worthy of being placed one step away from the Supreme Court," according to prepared remarks released yesterday, Politico reports. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he definitely has enough votes to confirm Barron, reports the Hill, which notes that Reid only needs a simple majority to quash Paul's filibuster. Democratic opposition to Barron "was just some misunderstanding," Reid told reporters. "Once everything was explained ... most everyone in our caucus was satisfied."

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Showing 3 of 12 comments
tran_tor
May 21, 2014 11:41 AM CDT
Even from the earliest times in the European settlements of America, the idea of innocence until proof of guilt and a right to a speedy trial existed. Most of our country's laws' foundations root in these concepts. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magna_Carta http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_Rights_1689 -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Bill_of_Rights The idea that 'national security' can strip an American citizen of all their rights and privileges under simple accusations by the government by a secret court are unimaginably horrific and destructive to our way of life and sense of justice and liberty in this country. This idea makes the president of the United States little less than a totalitarian dictator. Liberals and conservatives both agree I think that a major role of government is to ensure civil liberties of it's citizens. Shame on any politician for their lack of protest on this issue.
HANKHILL
May 21, 2014 9:53 AM CDT
when you "go over" to the "otherside" you are no longer an american and take your own chance! i for one hope you never come back! go die we wont cry!
milhousemn
May 21, 2014 8:19 AM CDT
Another example of politics over all else. If Bush was still president the republicans would have no issue with this and the democrats would be screaming twice as loud about how Bush is a murderer.