Democratic U.S. Representative Susan Davis has come to take the support of liberal voters for granted. A protest yesterday, however, made it clear that liberals in her home district are disenchanted with her increasingly Republican-like approach to government.
Last week, Susan Davis voted for the National Defense Authorization Act. The National Defense Authorization Act contains a provision that gives the federal government the power to detain Americans without criminal charge or criminal trial, without due process, and without substantiation of the government’s accusations. These provisions are in stark violation of our constitutional rights.
So, yesterday, liberal voters associated with MoveOn.org entered one of Susan Davis’s home district offices, in a demonstration of opposition to the NDAA.
Davis would not telephone to speak to the protesters from Washington D.C., but sent a message in reply, claiming that the National Defense Authorization Act does not violate Americans’ constitutional rights. She quoted a section of the legislation that states, “The requirement to detain a person in military custody under this section does not extend to citizens of the United States.”
The argument used by Representative Davis seems persuasive… unless you pay attention to details. The key word in the language quoted by Davis is requirement. All that this part of the legislation states is that the President is not required to throw Americans into prison without criminal charge. The National Defense Authorization Act still clearly states that the President may imprison Americans without criminal charge if he would like to do so.
Susan Davis, and far too many of her Democratic colleagues in Congress, have forgotten their oath of office – to defend the Constitution, from enemies both foreign and domestic. The National Defense Authorization Act is in opposition to the authority of the Constitution. Susan Davis had a duty to vote against it. She failed in that duty.