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H.R.3835 - To restore the Constitution's checks and balances and protections against government abuses as envisioned by the Founding Fathers.
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October 15, 2007
Mr. PAUL introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committees on Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, and Select Intelligence (Permanent Select), for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concernedCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.
(3) Checks and balances make the Nation safer by preventing abuses that would be exploited by Al Qaeda to boost terrorist recruitment, would deter foreign governments from cooperating in defeating international terrorism, and would make the American people reluctant to support aggressive counter-terrorism measures.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) Checks and balances have withered since 9/11 and an alarming concentration of power has been accumulated in the presidency based on hyper-inflated fears of international terrorism and a desire permanently to alter the equilibrium of power between the three branches of government.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(6) Experience demonstrates that global terrorism can be thwarted, deterred, and punished through muscular application of law enforcement measures and prosecutions in Federal civilian courts in lieu of military commissions or military law.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(7) Congressional oversight of the executive branch is necessary to prevent secret government, which undermines self-government and invites lawlessness and maladministration.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(b) Purpose- The American Freedom Agenda Act of 2007 is intended to restore the Constitution's checks and balances and protections against government abuses as envisioned by the Founding Fathers.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 3. MILITARY COMMISSIONS; ENEMY COMBATANTS; HABEAS CORPUS.
(b) The President is authorized to establish military commissions for the trial of war crimes only in places of active hostilities against the United States where an immediate trial is necessary to preserve fresh evidence or to prevent local anarchy.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(c) The President is prohibited from detaining any individual indefinitely as an unlawful enemy combatant absent proof by substantial evidence that the individual has directly engaged in active hostilities against the United States, provided that no United States citizen shall be detained as an unlawful enemy combatant.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(d) Any individual detained as an enemy combatant by the United States shall be entitled to petition for a writ of habeas corpus under
SEC. 4. TORTURE OR COERCED CONFESSIONS.
SEC. 5. INTELLIGENCE GATHERING.
No Federal agency shall gather foreign intelligence in contravention of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (
SEC. 6. PRESIDENTIAL SIGNING STATEMENTS.
The House of Representatives and Senate collectively shall enjoy standing to file a declaratory judgment action in an appropriate Federal district court to challenge the constitutionality of a presidential signing statement that declares the President's intent to disregard provisions of a bill he has signed into law because he believes they are unconstitutional.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 7. KIDNAPPING, DETENTIONS, AND TORTURE ABROAD.
No officer or agent of the United States shall kidnap, imprison, or torture any person abroad based solely on the President's belief that the subject of the kidnapping, imprisonment, or torture is a criminal or enemy combatant; provided that kidnapping shall be permitted if undertaken with the intent of bringing the kidnapped person for prosecution or interrogation to gather intelligence before a tribunal that meets international standards of fairness and due process. A knowing violation of this section shall be punished as a felony punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to 2 years.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 8. JOURNALIST EXCEPTION TO ESPIONAGE ACT.
Nothing in the Espionage Act of 1917 shall prohibit a journalist from publishing information received from the executive branch or Congress unless the publication would cause direct, immediate, and irreparable harm to the national security of the United States.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 9. USE OF SECRET EVIDENCE TO MAKE FOREIGN TERRORIST DESIGNATIONS.
Notwithstanding any other law, secret evidence shall not be used by the President or any other member of the executive branch to designate an individual or organization with a United States presence as a foreign terrorist or foreign terrorist organization for purposes of the criminal law or otherwise imposing criminal or civil sanctions.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
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