In the last ten days, an interesting controversy has bubbled up over congressional control of the drone program. The quarrel, which has been both internal to the Senate and between the Congress and the Executive, raises some important issues regarding Congress’s ability to control controversial but classified programs (such as the current drone program and CIA's previous interrogation program).
Latest in Interrogation: Legislative Development
The Senate passed the NDAA (S. 1867) last night on a 93-7 vote. The seven senators who voted against final passage are:
You can read the edited transcript from the Senate's debate yesterday on the detention provisions here. Previous coverage is available here and here. This includes debate on the Sessions amendment starting on page 4, the Feinstein amendments starting on page 11 and continuing throughout the transcript, and
As so many of you have found our earlier post of the Senate debate over the NDAA useful, we wanted to offer legislative materials related to the Senate's deliberations. I will continue to update this post with new materials, as I find them today. And I will post a transcript of the portions of the Senate floor debate yesterday that concerned the detention language and authorization.
FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III has written a letter to SASC Chairman Levin voicing the FBI's concerns over §1032 of the current version of the NDAA.
The FBI's concerns are twofold (quoting the letter):
First, by establishing a presumption of military detention for covered individuals within the United States, the legislation introduces a substantial element of uncertainty as to what procedures are to be followed in the course of a terrorism investigation in the United States.
Having now returned from my undisclosed location, here's a transcript of the Senate floor debate on the NDAA.
The Senate debated the bill on Thursday and Friday. This transcript, helpfully includes only those portions of the debate that relate specifically to the detention provisions. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin introduced as follows:
This is the final installment in my series of posts on the post-Executive Order spree of legislation emerging from Capitol Hill. It concerns the interrogation bill introduced by Sen. Saxby Chambliss as part of the Senate package of bills--the other elements of which I discussed here and here.