Senator John McCain:
"I think it's one of the worst decisions in history," McCain said. "It opens up a whole new chapter and interpretation of our constitution."
McCain is one of the authors of the 2006 Military Commissions Act which set up procedures for the handling of detainees. The act denied the detainees access to federal courts.
The Supreme Court on Thursday said that provision of the law violated the constitution.
McCain on Thursday said he had not read the ruling and reserved his criticism. But on Friday, speaking to about 1,500 people at a town hall meeting in Pemberton, N.J., he attacked the decision, saying the law he helped write "made it very clear that these are enemy combatants, they are not citizens, they do not have the rights of citizens."
Senator Barack Obama:
Barack Obama said of today’s Supreme Court ruling that the detainees at GITMO have the right to challenge their detention in civilian court, “The Court's decision is a rejection of the Bush Administration's attempt to create a legal black hole at Guantanamo - yet another failed policy supported by John McCain.”
He called the decision an important step towards regaining our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, “This is an important step toward reestablishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus. Our courts have employed habeas corpus with rigor and fairness for more than two centuries, and we must continue to do so as we defend the freedom that violent extremists seek to destroy.”
Former Congressman Bob Barr:
With these two decisions the Court “has reaffirmed one of the foundations of American liberties, the historic writ of habeas corpus—which requires the authorities to show cause for an arrest,” explains Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party candidate for president. The justices did not order anyone released, instead leaving that decision up to the trial judge after a full and fair hearing.
Barr, who since leaving Congress in January 2003 has become one of the nation’s leading advocates for protecting privacy and civil liberties, explained that the decision “is as much a victory for the American people as it is for any particular litigant.” The right to habeas corpus is enshrined in the Constitution: “by allowing a defendant to seek relief in court, habeas corpus is one of the most important legal limits on government,” explains Barr.
However, he observes, these decisions, though welcome, “are only the start in a long process of reasserting our liberties.”
Maybe (I'm still skeptical) Bob Barr really is interested in running as a Libertarian, not as some kind of neo-con Ralph Nader.
Which could be more interesting than anyone yet thinks. . . .