What: All Issues : Justice for All: Civil and Criminal : H.R. 2658. Fiscal 2004 Defense Appropriations/Procedural Vote to Defeat an Amendment Designed to Identify U.S. Military Intentions on the Legal Handling of Detained Individuals. (2003 senate Roll Call 279)
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H.R. 2658. Fiscal 2004 Defense Appropriations/Procedural Vote to Defeat an Amendment Designed to Identify U.S. Military Intentions on the Legal Handling of Detained Individuals.
senate Roll Call 279     Jul 16, 2003
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss
Qualifies as polarizing?
Yes
Is this vote crucial?
No

Among other things, the U.S. PATRIOT Act allows the military to retain military combatants indefinitely even if they have not been officially charged with a crime. In the view of Progressives, such detentions flagrantly violate the civil and legal rights of those detainees. During debate on the 2004 defense appropriations bill, Senator Bingaman (D-NM) introduced an amendment which would have required the military to account for every enemy combatant currently in U.S. captivity. Specifically, Bingaman's amendment would have required a report on each enemy combatant's name and nationality and whether the U.S. military intends to charge, repatriate, or release that individual. Progressives supported Bingaman's amendment as a way to pressure the military establishment into either formally charging enemy combatants with a crime or releasing them if criminal or terrorist activity could not be proved in court. Senator Stevens (R-AK) motioned to table (kill) Bingaman's amendment and the motion was adopted on a nearly party-line vote of 52-42 thereby defeating Bingaman's measure.

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