Fed Judge Strips Bush’s Authority to Designate Terrorist Groups

29 11 2006

Filed under: Judges, War on Terror, Bush, Politics

A pro-terrorist federal judge ruled yesterday that President Bush cannot designate terrorist groups.

A federal judge has ruled that a portion of a post-Sept. 11 executive order allowing President Bush to create a list of specially designated global terrorist groups is unconstitutionally vague.

U.S. District Judge Audrey Collins, in a Nov. 21 ruling released Tuesday, struck down the provision and enjoined the government from blocking the assets of two foreign groups which were placed on the list.

The ruling was praised by David Cole, a lawyer for the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Constitutional Rights.

“This law gave the president unfettered authority to create blacklists,” he said. “It was reminiscent of the McCarthy era.”

Jay Stephenson has background on the pro-terrorist, Center for Constitutional Rights:

The Center for Constitutional Rights is openly anti-American and pro-terrorist. Groups suspected of ties to terrorism give money to CCR. The granddaughter of the executed Communist spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg works there! At its 2004 annual convention, the CCR honored attorney Lynne Stewart, an open supporter of terrorism, indicted by the Justice Department for abetting the terrorist activities of her client, the “blind sheik,” Omar Abdel Rahman.

A lawyer from this organization praising this decision says just about all we need to know about the ruling.

The judge outlined the history of Bush’s Executive Order 13224 issued under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act in the days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. He declared then that the “grave acts of terrorism” and the “continuing and immediate threat of future attacks” constituted a national emergency.

He blocked all property and interests in property of 27 groups or individuals named as “specially designated global terrorists (SDGT).” Bush also authorized the secretary of the treasury to designate anyone who “assists, sponsors or provides services to” or is “otherwise associated with” a designated group.

Collins found that Bush’s authority to designate SDGTs is “unconstitutionally vague on its face.” She also found that the provision involving those “otherwise associated with” the groups is vague and overbroad and could impinge on First Amendment rights of free association. She struck down both provisions.

However, she let stand sections of the order that would penalize those who provide “services” to designated terrorist groups. She said such services would include the humanitarian aid and rights training proposed by the plaintiffs.

Cole said the Humanitarian Law Project will appeal those portions of the executive order which were allowed to stand. He said the judge’s ruling does not invalidate the hundreds of SDGT designations already made but “calls them into question.”

Cole said the value of the decision is it “says that even in fighting terrorism the president cannot be given a blank check to blacklist anyone he considers a bad guy or a bad group and you can’t imply guilt by association.”

Sounds a lot like Judge Collins is a Clinton appointee. You’re right. In 1994.

Michelle Malkin points out:

This same judge ruled parts of the Patriot Act unconstitutional that barred giving expert advice or assistance to groups designated international terrorist organizations in 2004. The same plaintiff and lawyer–David Cole and the Humanitarian Law Project representing the Liberation Tigers and the PKK–were involved in that case as in the present one. Michael Radu had a thorough analysis of the 2004 ruling and the plaintiffs here.

His conclusion then holds now:

One can only hope that Judge Collins will be overruled, if not by her colleagues on the Ninth Circuit (yes, miracles do happen), then by the Supreme Court. But regardless of what happens, we can draw valuable observations from these developments. The War on Terror has numerous fronts, many of them, unfortunately, within America itself, where sympathetic lawyers, “human rights” militants and inane judges can be the most dedicated enemies to national security.

And Captain Ed demonstrates that this isn’t the first time Collins has had a problem with anti-terror legislation:

During the Clinton administration, she struck down the 1996 anti-terrorism law passed by Congress in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing. Collins seems to have trouble reading the law, finding all counterterrorism legislation too vague to be understood. Perhaps the problem lies with Collins more than the laws themselves.

This warrants impeachment. There is a difference between a controversial ruling and ignorant judicial activism. This is obviously the latter. Collins shows no ability to read and understand the Constitution and is far more concerned with her personal views of the President than doing her sworn job or even protecting America. Shame on her. I am calling for impeachment.

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