Thursday, June 29, 2006

No "blank check" for president: Supreme Court delivers "stunning rebuke" on Guantanamo Bay

[updated & corrected]

By Diane Silver

It will take a while to untangle the true meaning of this decision, but it is about time the Supreme Court recognized that the presidency is not a blank check.

The only immediately worrisome thing I can see is the fact that the decision may well have turned out this way because Chief Justice Roberts had to recuse himself from the case. This could mean that the Court may not rule against Bush's trampling of civil and human rights in future terror cases.

A few hours later... well, yes, it could mean that, except that I can't count. There were 5 justices who ruled against Bush. Thus, even with Roberts vote, the administration would have lost. I am a worrier, though, and continue to wonder what will happen in cases where Roberts has a voice.

William Branigin writes in The Washington Post:

The Supreme Court today delivered a stunning rebuke to the Bush administration over its plans to try Guantanamo detainees before military commissions, ruling that the commissions are unconstitutional.
AP via New York Times says:

In his own opinion, Justice Stephen Breyer said, "Congress has not issued the executive a 'blank check."'

See legal analysis at the SCOTUSblog here.

more thoughts & links later..

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