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Are You The Enemy - The New American Magazine 10 30 06

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Are You The Enemy - The New American Magazine 10 30 06

  1. 1. Saving Our Elections • Property Rights Champion Lost • Border Bamboozlement October 30, 2006 $2.95 Are YOU the Enemy? Under the Military Commissions Act of 2006, you could be. See how your Congressmen voted on your future, page 22.
  2. 2. Inform. Educate. Involve. You can help shape America. And you can help shape the future. Giving gift subscriptions of The New American magazine to those you know is a thoughtful way to get them to partake in the lively discussion that you and The New American inspire. To order, see next page.
  3. 3. Your first gift is $39.00, Additional gifts are just $29.00 each — more than 25% off! Please enter the following One-Year Gift Subscriptions:* *Print your name on the “From” line for each gift as you’d like it to appear on the gift announcement. Name ______________________________________________ Name ______________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ Send renewal notice to: Send renewal notice to: From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber Name ______________________________________________ Name ______________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ Send renewal notice to: Send renewal notice to: From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber Name ______________________________________________ Name ______________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ Send renewal notice to: Send renewal notice to: From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber Name ______________________________________________ Name ______________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ Send renewal notice to: Send renewal notice to: From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber Name ______________________________________________ Name ______________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ City ________________________ State _____ Zip __________ Send renewal notice to: Send renewal notice to: From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber From ____________________________ ❑ Donor ❑ Subscriber Hawaii and Canada, add $9.00/yr., Foreign, add $27.00/yr. HURRY! OFFER EXPIRES DECEMBER 2, 2006 Donor Name ___________________________________________________________ Total Subs: Amount Enclosed: Address ____________________________________________________________ _____ __________________ $_________________ City _____________________________________ State _______ Zip ______________ 0000 000 0000 000 000 Phone ____________________________ E-mail __________________________________ 0000 0000 0000 0000 VISA/MC/Discover American Express Three Digit V-Code Four Digit V-Code ❑ Check ❑ VISA ❑ Discover ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ❑ Money Order ❑ MasterCard ❑ American Express # _________________________________________ Exp. Date ________________Signature ___________________________________ Mail or Fax this form to: NAG06 P.O. Box 8040 • Appleton, WI 54912-8040 Fax: (920) 749-3785 • http://www.thenewamerican.com
  4. 4. 10 Vol. 22, No. 22 October 30, 2006 COVER STORY ON THE HOME FRONT 10 Are YOU the Enemy? Design by Joseph W. Kelly by Joe Wolverton II, J.D. — Under the Military Commissions Act of 2006, you could be. 15 Expanding Surveillance Authority by William F. Jasper — The surveillance power demanded by the Bush administration would expand executive branch power. 15 17 FEATURES ELECTIONS 17 Saving Our Elections by Kurt Hyde — America’s once proud and trustworthy elections AP AP are being undermined, but concerned citizens can take steps to restore the integrity of our electoral process. 22 CONSERVATIVE INDEX 22 How They Voted Our final look at the 109th Congress shows how every representative and senator voted on key issues, including warrantless surveillance, the border fence, and military tribunals. HISTORY — PAST AND PERSPECTIVE 34 The Fall of Rome by Dennis Behreandt AP IN MEMORIAM 41 Remembering a Champion 34 by William F. Jasper — Helen Chenoweth-Hage was a staunch property rights advocate. THE LAST WORD 44 Border Bamboozlement & Betrayal by William F. Jasper 41 DEPARTMENTS 5 Letters to the Editor 33 Exercising the Right 7 Inside Track 40 The Goodness of America 9 QuickQuotes 43 Correction, Please! AP COVER Design by Joseph W. Kelly
  5. 5. Their Names: North American Union Security & Prosperity Partnership Their Agenda: Serving Salt Lake Valley, Utah Combine Canada, Mexico & the United States into a “Superstate” Appliances • Heating • Air Conditioning like the European Union. (801) 254-2566 What You Can Do: Find out more at JBS.org/nau! You’ll be surprised at what’s going on behind your back. Visit today: JBS.org/nau
  6. 6. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Publisher John F. McManus Editor Exposing Racists our “defense” budget is spent protecting the Gary Benoit Sam Antonio has provided a great patriotic exploitation of Middle East oil and gas by service by his coverage of the annual con- multinational corporations? Senior Editor ference of the group National Council of La ROBERT KENDRA William F. Jasper Raza (The Race). In his article “‘The Race’ Putnam, Connecticut to Win America” (August 7 issue), he cites Copy Editor the usual hypocrites, opportunists, and power Kurt Williamsen brokers who spoke glowingly of the racist “Veterinary Ethic” Contributors NCLR: men like Karl Rove, Bill Clinton, and In regard to John Burns’ essay “The Vet- Dennis J. Behreandt New Mexico governor William Richardson. erinary Ethic” (August 21 issue), which Christopher S. Bentley But the most brazen speaker at the confer- was about the doctors in New Orleans who Steven J. DuBord ence was U.S. Senator Samuel Brownback, a stand accused of euthanizing several of Thomas R. Eddlem Jodie Gilmore Republican from Kansas. their patients in the aftermath of Hurricane William P. Hoar Brownback has been one of the most in- Katrina, allow me to offer the following Warren Mass corrigible, arrogant, obdurate, and aggressive observations. Michael E. Telzrow opponents of sensible immigration reform I, too, steadfastly oppose euthanasia. This Joe Wolverton II, J.D. ever since he first set foot inside the Senate “veterinary ethic” has no place in the practice building. He’s obviously going to run for the of medicine. Burns, however, in his zealous Editorial Assistant Ann Shibler Republican presidential nomination in 2008, opposition writes critically without facts. and he’s pandering to a radical bunch of mil- He offends the moral principle found in Art Director itant racists, thinking that most Latinos will American jurisprudence of “suspects are pre- Joseph W. Kelly vote for him if he promises to give La Raza sumed innocent until proven guilty.” Burns and their supporters whatever they want, re- accuses, tries, and convicts three people of Desktop Publishing Specialist gardless of its harm to America. something about which he knows practically Steven J. DuBord Would he dare attend a conference of a nothing factual. Obviously, he believes them Research white group that called itself “The Race”? guilty. They must prove their innocence. Mary Benoit No, but a racist conference of Latinos is fine How absurd. Why not let the legal system Brian T. Farmer with him and the major leaders of today’s function as it should? Bonnie M. Gillis corrupt Republican and Democratic Parties If, indeed, the three accused are guilty, — and with the TV news and newspapers. they should be punished. If not, they should Marketing Larry Greenley America is in very dangerous times largely be freed. Tragically, even if they are inno- George R. Kotalik due to these turncoats. Sam Antonio illustrates cent, their lives will be forever tainted. John H. Nelson quite well and quite frighteningly the real war M.G. SIMPSON, MD our nation is in: one which isn’t in Iraq or Af- Covington, Louisiana Web Manager ghanistan, but one right here on our soil. Brian Witt KENNETH REYNOLDS Advertising/Circulation Bronx, New York UN Gun-control Rhetoric Julie DuFrane Was it possible for Kurt Williamsen to say all that needed to be said about the “UN Gun He’s for War Grab Goes Bust” (August 7 issue) in only a Edward “Ned” Lamont does not oppose the page and a half? Of course not. But the Kofi Iraq War, as parenthesized in “Lieberman vs. Annan announcement Williamsen quoted Lamont” (September 4 issue). He empha- contained a “killer sentence” that most TNA Printed in the U.S.A. • ISSN 0885-6540 P.O. Box 8040 • Appleton, WI 54912 sized in a recent TV interview that frontline readers would have trounced upon, which 920-749-3784 • 920-749-3785 (fax) troops must be replaced by Iraqi troops and Williamsen overlooked: “Our energy, our www.thenewamerican.com that U.S. troops will stay in the background. emphasis, and our anger is directed against Rates are $39 per year (Hawaii and Canada, Translated, that means U.S. troops will be illegal weapons, not legal ones.” add $9; foreign, add $27) or $22 for six months (Hawaii and Canada, add $4.50; foreign, add stationed at the 14 permanent U.S. military How long till the UN figures out a way to $13.50). Copyright ©2006 by American Opin- bases in Iraq as long as necessary (probably make them all “illegal”? ion Publishing, Inc. Periodicals postage paid at indefinitely) to secure the highly profitable RICHARD WARD Appleton, WI and additional mailing offices. Post- master: Send any address changes to THE NEW exploration, development, production, and Greenfield, Tennessee AMERICAN, P.O. Box 8040, Appleton, WI 54912. transport of Iraq’s huge petroleum reserves by Big Oil and its affiliates. Send your letters to: THE NEW AMERICAN, P.O. THE NEW AMERICAN is pub- lished biweekly by Ameri- Are we supposed to believe this scion of Box 8040, Appleton, WI 54912. Or e-mail: can Opinion Publishing the international House of Morgan will re- editorial@thenewamerican.com. Due to vol- Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of The John duce U.S. military involvement in the Per- ume received, not all letters can be answered. Birch Society. sian Gulf, where as much as one-fourth of Letters may be edited for space and clarity. THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 5
  7. 7. Alabama Stewart H. Welch, Jr. CLU 3940 Montclair Road, Suite 500 Birmingham, AL 35213 1-800-709-7100 Life Insurance • Annuities • Long Term Care
  8. 8. Inside Track North Korea Nuke Crisis: Made in the U.S.A. North Korea’s defiant announcement that it had conducted an Korea’s dictatorship, which is our most openly, virulently, self- atomic bomb test on October 9, and that it would continue to avowed enemy. carry out additional tests despite global condemnation, should Now, having helped create the poison, the current administra- have surprised no one. The fact that the communist regime in tion proposes a toxic antidote: a strengthened United Nations. Pyongyang has been aggressively building a nuclear weapons “We will work with the United Nations,” said President Bush program over the past two decades is no secret. What seems to in an October 11 White House press conference. “We’ll support be forgotten is that much of North Korea’s weapons program our allies in the region. And together, we will ensure that North that is now causing such world concern has been built with aid Korea understands the consequences if it continues down its provided first by the Clinton administration and then by the Bush current path.” administration. In 1994, President Clinton announced a great diplo- matic breakthrough, his so-called Agreed Framework, with Communist North Korea. Under the new compact, brokered by former President Jimmy Carter, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il promised to freeze his nuclear program in return for two light-water nuclear reactors and 500,000 tons of heavy fuel oil annually from the United States. This was nuclear extortion, plain and simple, but President Clinton announced that this treacherous agreement was “good for the United States, good for our allies, and good for the safety of the entire world.” Clinton’s Secretary of State Madeleine Albright flew off to Pyongyang for a photo-op in which she clinked champagne glasses with Kim, in a toast to the wonderful new relationship. President George W. Bush continued the Clinton aid program, even after publicly condemning North North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il (left) toasts with Korea as a terrorist sponsor in his famous “axis of evil” speech. then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. THE NEW AMERICAN has repeatedly exposed the treason and insanity of this program of assisting North AP Secret North American Forum Meeting in Banff, Canada A secret meeting was held in Banff, Alberta, Canada, in mid- North American energy strategy and security cooperation. September where North American elites, including several Bush According to Hurtig: “We’re talking about such an important administration officials, planned for further integration of North thing, we’re talking about the integration of Canada into the Unit- America. To show just how high-level this meeting was, George ed States. For them to hold this meeting in secret and to make Shultz (secretary of state under Reagan, George W. Bush mentor, every effort to avoid anybody learning about it, right away you’ve and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations) was on hand got to be hugely concerned.” to co-chair it. Thomas Shannon, who attended the Banff meeting, made very According to CBC News, Mel Hurtig, noted Canadian author clear what the Banff meeting was about in his remarks at a meet- and politician, was one of the Banff meeting participants. Hurtig ing in Ottawa, Canada on September 14, which are posted on the made public the agenda and attendee list for the September 12-14 U.S. Department of State’s official website, usinfo.state.gov: forum revealing that the gathering was called “Continental Pros- perity in the New Security Environment.” Scheduled participants I also had a chance to go out to Banff, where yesterday and from the United States included Carla Hills, Trilateral Commis- today actually, Canada, the United States and Mexico held sion member and former U.S. Trade Representative; Dr. Robert the second session of the North American Forum. A. Pastor, CFR member and godfather of the North American For those of you who aren’t familiar with the North Ameri- Union (NAU); Dr. Thomas A. Shannon, Assistant Secretary of can Forum, it sprang up as a parallel structure to the Security State for Western Hemisphere Affairs; and Donald R. Rumsfeld, and Prosperity Partnership of North America. It was original- former CFR member and current secretary of defense. Rumsfeld ly an effort to … begin to create a vision for North America was slated to be a keynote speaker. Topics on the agenda included and an understanding of what North America is as an entity. THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 7
  9. 9. Inside Track Proposal to Stop School Shootings Frank Lasee, a state representative in Wisconsin’s 2nd Assembly District, commented about the recent string of school violence, including the killing of a Wisconsin principal and an aborted Columbine-style attack in Green Bay, and an incident involving a Madison, Wisconsin, boy who used a knife from a home eco- nomics class to threaten another student. Lasee notes: “Many on the left will most likely use this tragedy to push for a total ban on A makeshift memorial for the girls guns.... Several countries have tried this tactic. It has failed every time.” For proof, he looks to Great Britain and Australia, where slain in the Amish school shooting. AP strict gun control measures virtually disarmed the general public. In both places armed robbery and murder rates increased substan- attacks of Israeli schools by Palestinian terrorists,” Lasee says, tially. In Great Britain, the “homicide rates jumped by 50%.” “teachers and parent volunteers in the West Bank began carrying To put an end to school shootings, Lasee proposes the same concealed weapons to protect themselves and their students from solution as that implemented successfully by Israel and Thailand harm. In the twenty-five years since, no child has been harmed by — arming teachers and school officials. “Following repeated gunfire in an Israeli school.” Anti-North American Union Resolution Introduced A nonbinding resolution sponsored by Rep. Virgil Goode (R-Va.), can Union with Mexico and Canada; and and cosponsored by Reps. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), Tom Tancredo (3) the president should indicate strong opposition to (R-Colo.), and Ron Paul (R-Texas), brings official opposition these or any other proposals that threaten the sovereignty to the creation of the North American Union and the NAFTA of the United States. Superhighway. The resolution (House Concurrent Res. 487) has been introduced at a time when the Bush administration — along Frequent readers of this magazine are familiar with the threat of with many lawmakers — refuse to admit that President Bush is the North American Union, the Security and Prosperity Partner- trying to secretly implement a new regional government. ship (SPP), and the proposed NAFTA Superhighway. THE NEW The resolution expresses the sense of Congress that: AMERICAN had been reporting on this issue prior to many other media outlets. Surely we can, and should, take some of the credit (1) the United States should not engage in the construc- for generating enough attention for these lawmakers to introduce tion of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) this resolution. However, even if this resolution were adopted, it Superhighway System; would only be a first step; Congress needs to enact legislation (2) the United States should not enter into a North Ameri- blocking the North American Union. Mexican President Compares Border Fence to the Berlin Wall An Associated Press report indicated that Mexico’s President Vi- versus protecting our national borders, is a pretty telling litmus cente Fox declared the border fence bill — recently authorized test of what passes for diplomacy out of Mexico. by both houses of Congress — to be “shameful,” and compared According to VDARE.com, Mexico is home to the world’s it to the Berlin Wall. third richest man, including at least AP Mexico’s President-elect Felipe Calde- nine other billionaires, along with nu- ron absurdly urged the United States merous millionaires. The same corrupt government to supply Mexico with new and entrenched ruling class that uses its roads and development instead of building political power and control of the gov- a border fence to prevent would-be illegal ernment to protect its wealth, and amass immigrants from entering our country. more, wants the United States to absorb Comparing a border security fence its poverty, while compelling American made to keep illegal immigrants out to taxpayers to pick up the tab to build up the Berlin Wall (which was structured to the country’s infrastructure. The profits keep in fearful citizens of a totalitarian from that infrastructure building would government), or suggesting that U.S. rev- primarily end up in the pockets of the enue be spent on development in Mexico Mexican President Vicente same ruling elite. ■ Fox (left) with president-elect 8 Felipe Calderon. THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006
  10. 10. QUICKQUOTES Germany’s Leader Not Bending to Possible Islamic Extremism “Self-censorship does not help us against people who want to practice violence in the name of Islam. It makes no sense to retreat.” Reacting to a decision to cancel a Mozart opera because of fears that its depiction of something unfavorable to Muslims would invite retaliation, Chancellor Angela Merkel cheered many of her countrymen with her un- willingness to submit to possible violence. AP Ordinary Americans Skeptical About Falling Fuel Prices “I think prices are going down now because it’s election time but I feel they will go back up again right after [November 7].” Pennsylvania school bus driver Roberta Mays believes gasoline prices are manipulated by the Bush administration, an opinion held by 42 percent of Americans according to a Gallup survey. Congressman Says Fence Needed at the Border “We have to come to grips with the fact that our Border Patrol agents need a border fence … where we’re now facing infiltration by members of terrorist organizations like Hezbollah.” A strong supporter of the move to construct a fence at the U.S. southern border, Representative Ed Royce (D-Calif.) points out that some of the individuals sneaking into our country are terrorists. Free Nations Are the Best Protectors of the Environment “Contrary to the slogans of demonstrators throughout the world, the nations that have the best track records on environmental protection and improvement are those with the highest amount of free-market capitalism.” Writing in The Heartland Institute’s Environmental and Climate News, Dr. Jay Lehr and Professor Samuel Aldrich counter the false impression that big governments are nature’s friend. A Pithy Comment About Forgiving Terrorists ▲ “I believe that forgiving them is God’s function. Our job is to arrange the meeting.” In an interview, retired General Norman Schwartzkopf was asked about forgiving the attackers who killed close to 3,000 on September 11, 2001. Alaskan Environmentalist Delighted as Judge Blocks Plan to Tap Oil Reserves “Teshekpuk Lake is of critical international importance AP for migratory birds and other wildlife, and this decision gives us a reprieve and a chance to work for permanent protection of that very special place.” When access to a mere 389,000 acres out of an expanse of 23,500,000 acres of Northern Alaskan tundra was blocked by a federal judge, Audubon Alaska’s President Stan Senner wasted no time in expressing his joy. Former Counterterrorism Chief Critical of Bush Administration “The ham-handed attempts to erroneously link Iraq with the Qaeda attacks destroyed the government’s credibility with much of the country.” Upset about the division in our country because of the Iraq War, former National Security Coun- cil terrorism expert Richard Clarke didn’t shrink from his assessment of the Bush administration’s misinformation. ■ — COMPILED BY JOHN F. MCMANUS AP THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 9
  11. 11. ON THE HOME FRONT Are YOU the Enemy? Under the Military Commissions Act of 2006, you could be. The Military Commissions Act of 2006 allows the executive branch to circumvent the Constitution, endangering the due process of law for all Americans, not just terrorists. by Joe Wolverton II, J.D. the affixing of the president’s signature is by coercion” — think administration-ap- now a formality.* This legislation is being proved methods of torture. We are being O n September 28, by a vote of 65- highlighted by the Bush administration and told that this action is preventive medicine 34, the Senate formally passed S. most Republicans as a get-tough-on-ter- to heal a world gone wrong. Question now: 3930, the Military Commissions rorists measure that allows “alien unlaw- with this fix in place, what’s the prognosis Act of 2006 (MCA). The next day, the ful enemy combatants … [to be] subject for the patient? House of Representatives followed suit, to trial by military commissions” without To begin answering that question, imag- passing the act by a vote of 250-170, and the constitutional safeguards American ine the following scenario: your son Mi- citizens possess against illegal detainment chael (or daughter Michelle) is in Florida * To see how your U.S. representative and senators and judicial railroading. Moreover, the bill on vacation; you speak to him via cell- voted, see House vote #39 and the Senate vote #39 allows “pain or suffering incidental to law- phone when he arrives at the airport and in the “Conservative Index,” pages 22-31. ful sanctions” and “statements … obtained he is waiting in line to check his bags. You 10 THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006
  12. 12. go to your local airport at arrival time to clear restriction on the sus- pick him up and he never appears. You call pension of this bulwark of all the relevant authorities, including the liberty, the bill states: Passage of the MCA was pushed by the police, FBI, CIA, and Homeland Secu- current administration in a bid to get rity, and no one acknowledges having any No court, justice, or judge congressional approval of all the illegal information on your son. You go almost shall have jurisdiction to out of your mind; you go to the airport in hear or consider any claim actions that they had already been taking, Florida, interview security guards, conces- or case of action, including obviously banking on the idea that if they sion stand workers, and cabbies. You learn an application for a writ of nothing. After six months of never-ending habeas corpus, pending could get congressional approval, they worry gnawing at your gut, your son is on or filed after the date would also get Supreme Court approval. dropped at your house. You learn that he of enactment of this Act, was mistaken for a known terrorist by the against the United States CIA, flown to Cuba, and interrogated by or its agents, brought by or on behalf The legislation leaves it up to the mili- being repeatedly put in a giant freezer and of any alien detained by the United tary judge to decide whether or not the chilled to within an inch of his life and by States as an unlawful enemy com- coercive methods used to elicit evidence being painfully deprived of sleep. batant, relating to any aspect of the from detainees constitutes torture. The All of this would be allowed under the alien’s detention, transfer, treatment, act instructs the judge to weigh the “to- new act. Worse yet, imagine that the gov- or conditions of confinement. tality of the circumstances” surrounding ernment never figures out that your son the garnering of the prisoner’s testimony is innocent of all charges, and he never Torture in making this crucial determination. This returns. The act gives President Bush the power to sort of ad hoc determination of what is and define for American interrogators behav- is not torture is unsettling and capricious. Habeas Corpus ior that does or does not constitute torture, Remarkably, these parameters will be the In effect, one could say that the sick world physical and mental pain, or serious coer- only binding guidelines for the CIA and is being given potent poison to bring about cion. Admittedly, according to the black others responsible for gathering intelli- the cure sponsored by President Bush. letter of the Military Commissions Act, gence from detainees, regardless of prin- Granted, the bill does not apparently treat evidence obtained by torture is inadmis- ciples of the Geneva Convention, rulings citizens and foreigners equally, and the sible against the suspects. But what con- of the Supreme Court, or constitutional harshest treatment would generally be stitutes torture? prohibitions to the contrary. doled out to foreigners, but is the bill something we want to inflict on ourselves or others? Can we justify it by saying that the majority of those scooped up will be terrorist killers who de- serve what they get? Let’s look at what the bill would do. A component of this bill that has attracted the attention of legal commentators and civil libertarians alike is that part which authorizes the president to suspend the right of habeas corpus. Habeas corpus is Latin for “you have the body.” It grants prisoners the right to re- quest from a judge the reasons for his incarceration. Article 1, Section 9 of the United States Constitution plainly states: “The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebel- AP lion or invasion the public safety JAG lawyers: The top lawyers of the military, including those from the Army, Navy, Air Force, and may require it.” Marines, objected to the recently enacted Military Commissions Act because it allows terrorist Despite the Constitution’s suspects to be tried without even knowing the evidence that is presented against them. THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 11
  13. 13. ON THE HOME FRONT voice was but one in a re- Are You an Enemy Combatant? spectable chorus of credible Americans would be forgiven for naively The all-encompassing powers granted opponents harmonizing in believing that while the threats to liberty to the president by the MCA potentially their condemnation of the in the MCA tip-toe toward tyranny, they unconstitutional and un- will only be used toward that end against forbid anyone deemed an enemy of just aspects of the new law. those with at least diaphanous ties to ter- the administration or its policies from None of the parts of this rorism. Namely, they would be employed seeking judicial relief from unlawful song sound as persuasive to protect Americans from that group of as that of the officers of the n’er-do-wells known as “unlawful enemy imprisonment. This law enthrones the armed forces justice system, combatants.” In language that is sure to president as the ultimate arbiter of justice. known as the Judge Advo- shake your sense of safety, the following cate General (JAG) Corps. is the MCA’s definition of an “unlawful These uniquely interested enemy combatant”: Geneva Convention and informed military legal experts ada- This act dismisses outright the limita- mantly oppose several key aspects of this The term “unlawful enemy combat- tions and guarantees provided by the Ge- new legislation. ant” means: (i) a person who has en- neva Convention, as well. After the vote, Referring to the new law’s provision gaged in hostilities or who has pur- Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tried to that a detainee is not allowed to see the posefully and materially supported make the act sound as if it never comes evidence presented against him, Rear Ad- hostilities against the United States close to skirting the line in the area of per- miral Bruce E. MacDonald, the Navy’s top or its co-belligerents who is not a sonal legal protections: “America can be lawyer, echoes his colleague’s sentiments: lawful enemy combatant (including a proud. Not only did she adhere to the Ge- “I can’t imagine any military judge believ- person who is part of the Taliban, al- neva Conventions, she went further than ing that an accused has had a full and fair Qaeda, or associated forces); or (ii) a she had to, because we’re better than the hearing if all the government’s evidence person who, before, on, or after the terrorists.” But his statement didn’t even that was introduced was all classified and date of the enactment of the Military hold water with the military lawyers who the accused was not able to see any of it.” Commissions Act of 2006, has been would be charged with operating the tribu- Not to be left out of the battle, the Air determined to be an unlawful enemy nals. Several commented on Common Ar- Force’s chief lawyer, Major General Jack combatant by a Combatant Status Re- ticle 3 of the Geneva Convention. Article Rives, flew into the fray and dropped a view Tribunal or another competent 3 (called “Common Article 3” because it bomb on the MCA, declaring that the com- tribunal established under the author- is common to all four of the conventions) missions established by the act do “not ity of the president or the secretary of proscribes the “passing of sentences and comport with my ideas of due process.” defense. the carrying out of executions without pre- vious judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial Hamdi decision: For nearly three years, Yaser Esam Hamdi, a U.S. citizen, was held by guarantees which are recognized as indis- the Bush administration as an enemy combatant without being charged or put on trial. pensable by civilized peoples.” After Hamdi’s legal counsel successfully argued before the Supreme Court that this legal limbo was unconstitutional, the Bush administration simply released Hamdi. In addressing this issue before a Sen- ate committee, Brigadier General James C. Walker, Staff Judge Advocate General (JAG) for the Marine Corps, lamented: “I’m not aware of any situation in the world where there is a system of juris- prudence that is recognized by civilized people, where an individual can be tried without, and convicted without seeing the evidence against him. And I don’t think the United States needs to become first in that scenario.” This new law clearly ignores General Walker’s concern. Specifically, the law declares: “It generally is neither practi- cable nor appropriate for combatants like al-Qaeda terrorists to be tried before tri- bunals that included all of the procedures associated with courts-martial.” Brigadier General Walker’s warning AP 12 THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006
  14. 14. Extraordinary rendition: Unbeknownst to Notice that this definition con- friends and family, the CIA abducted German tains no exception for Americans; Khalid al-Masri on December 31, 2003; they it throws the blanket over citizen brought him to Afghanistan and allegedly and alien alike by using the word tortured and interrogated him for nearly “person” rather than “alien.” Jose five months before figuring out that he was Padilla found this out firsthand. innocent. The enacted Military Commissions Jose Padilla is an American Act will allow such behavior to be practiced — born in New York and raised on Americans. in Chicago. On May 8, 2002, he was arrested in Chicago after re- turning from Pakistan upon sus- picion of being linked to the Sep- tember 11, 2001 terrorist attack. Padilla’s attorney immediately filed a habeas corpus petition with the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, seeking to invoke his client’s constitutionally guar- anteed right to be informed as to the justification for his confine- ment. The court denied Padilla’s petition citing the president’s au- AP thority to designate any person, citizen or alien, an “enemy com- batant” and to detain such person indefinitely. Undeterred by his parents’ testimony, exclusively to the Congress?) prohibited Padilla appealed this decision to the Hamdi was shipped to the detention facil- a court from interfering in matters of na- 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. The ap- ity at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Later, he tional security. The decision was appealed pellate court held that the president had was transferred to a brig in South Caro- to the Supreme Court. no such authority. The administration lina. In June of 2002, a petition of habeas Although the Supreme Court’s opinion then appealed this ruling to the Supreme corpus was filed on Hamdi’s behalf by his in Hamdi is diffuse and complicated, eight Court, where the justices were called to father. The court ruled that the petition of the nine justices agreed that the Consti- consider the legitimacy of the president’s was proper and granted Hamdi’s father tution proscribes the Executive Branch’s power to suspend the constitutional pro- standing to act in the place of his son. The attempt to hold indefinitely an American tections of the due process of law from Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed citizen and to deny him the protections of an American citizen. The court meekly that decision, however, ruling that the “se- the Bill of Rights with regard to the due dodged this issue, however, and remanded curity interests” of the country outweighed process of law. the case back to the district court for dis- Hamdi’s right to file a habeas corpus pe- Could a completely innocent person missal without prejudice. Admittedly, Jose tition. Upon remand, the lower court de- also be ensnared? Yes. Khalid al-Masri, Padilla has a history of criminal behavior, nied the government’s motion to dismiss a German citizen, was abducted in 2003 and he was no poster boy for the law-abid- Hamdi’s petition. The court requested while he was on vacation, taken to Afghan- ing, but the rights set out in the Constitu- evidence from the government that would istan, and interrogated and tortured for five tion are designed to protect all Americans, prove Hamdi’s alliance with the Taliban months before the CIA figured out that likeable and detestable. and his designation as an “unlawful enemy they had abducted a completely innocent Another character ensnared in the “il- combatant.” man who just happened to have the same legal enemy combatant” net was Yaser The government refused to comply name as a wanted terrorist. (Why the CIA Esam Hamdi. Hamdi was born in Baton with the court’s order, and appealed the thought that a well-known terrorist would Rouge, Louisiana, to Saudi Arabian par- request to the Fourth ents. In 2001, Hamdi was captured by Circuit. Remarkably, the Afghan Northern Alliance and subse- quently handed over to the U.S. military. the Court of Ap- peals held that the EXTRA COPIES AVAILABLE Hamdi was accused of being a member president’s power to ➧ Additional copies of this issue of of the Taliban regime, but he and his fam- make war (is this not THE NEW AMERICAN are available at ily argued that he was in Afghanistan as a power delegated in quantity-discount prices. To order, visit an aid worker and had been erroneously Article I, Section 8 www.thenewamerican.com/marketplace/ detained. of our Constitution or see the card between pages 38-39. THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 13
  15. 15. WHY PAY MORE?? have been traveling and vacationing using his own name is anybody’s guess.) Passage of the MCA was pushed by CALL US! the current administration in a bid to get congressional approval of all the illegal actions that they had already been taking, Airline Motor Inn obviously banking on the idea that if they could get congressional approval, they would also get Supreme Court approval. Call toll free for reservations: Prognosis: Long-term Suffering 800-635-7639 The Military Commissions Act of 2006 is an eradication of the most basic pro- 1984 Airline Drive • P.O. Box 72549 tections of liberty enshrined for over 200 Bossier City, Louisiana, 71112-2549 years in our sacred Constitution. The Honest Dealings In all-encompassing powers granted to the president by this law potentially forbid New & Used Cars any man, woman, or child deemed an enemy of the administration or its policies 1-800-325-5337 from seeking judicial relief from unlawful imprisonment. Most terrifying of all, this 867 Church St. law enthrones President Bush — and his New Bedford, MA 02745 bestwestairline@aol.com successors, whether Democrat or Repub- Phone: 318-742-6000 lican — as the ultimate arbiters of justice Ralph G. Medeiros, Jr. to those suspected of being America’s en- Dealer Principal Fax: 318-742-4615 emies. You can only hope that that person is not you. www.bestwestern.com/airlinemotorinn Those who fail to see the dire gravity of this legislation and who prefer to take ref- uge in the naive partisan belief that Presi- dent Bush and the Republican Congress would never abuse this tremendous power, should contemplate well the fact that both the White House and Congress may very possibly change to Democrat control in the near future. Then will the supporters of the Bush administration’s grasp for power have a leg to stand on to even pro- Since 1953 test, let alone stop, dictatorial exercise of the same power under a Democrat regime PHONE • Specializing in gas compression equipment run by Clinton, Feinstein, Boxer, Pelosi, 432-362-0303 • Power & compressor cylinder relining Schumer, and the like? 800-874-7904 This law, as well as other recently • Rod and piston manufacturing & repair chronicled usurpations, sacrifices the due process of law on the altar of absolutism. • Thread rolling There can be but one final obstacle to com- FAX • Cast iron welding plete executive power — the people of the 432-362-4649 • Compressor valve services United States of America. We must hold 432-362-7175 every member of Congress accountable • Rings & riders who voted for this unprecedented and un- • Fuel & air valve components conscionable breach of our constitutional MAIL rule of law, and we must seek out and sup- • Metalizing P.O. Box 14290 port men and women determined to uphold Odessa, TX 79768 • Complete machine shop services the federal oath of office and courageously defend the Constitution against all enemies • Cylinder head services — foreign or domestic. If we do not do this, • Available 24 hours per day are we really better than the terrorists? ■ SHIP 8815 W. County Road N Odessa, TX 79764 GOD BLESS AMERICA II Chronicles 7:14 14
  16. 16. ON THE HOME FRONT Expanding Surveillance Authority The surveillance power demanded by President Bush would not necessarily provide any better protection from terrorism, but it would certainly expand executive branch power. by William F. Jasper O n December 17 of last year, dur- ing his weekly radio address, President Bush confirmed reports by the New York Times and CNN that, fol- lowing the 9/11 attacks, he had given the National Security Agency (NSA) authori- zation to eavesdrop on Americans commu- AP nicating with people overseas. The presi- dent said that ordering such electronic mediately appealed the decision and on consular officials revealed that all 15 of the surveillance without judicial warrants is October 4, a three-judge panel ruled that publicly available applications, including “fully consistent” with his “constitution- the NSA may continue its eavesdropping Mihdhar’s, had been issued in violation of al responsibilities and authorities,” and while awaiting a final ruling from the 6th existing law, despite blatant red flags that charged that the media exposure of this Circuit Court of Appeals. should have disqualified all of them. Thus, secret program is illegal and “damages Interestingly, during the December 17, there is no reason to believe that the kind our national security and puts our citizens 2005 radio address, President Bush cited of extraordinary power demanded by Pres- at risk.” the case of 9/11 hijackers Khalid Al- ident Bush would have provided any more The NSA, which eavesdrops on billions Mihdhar and Nawaf Al-Hazmi as a prime needed intelligence or that it would have of communications worldwide, is barred example of the need for warrantless sur- been acted on any better than the abundant from domestic spying without a warrant, as veillance. This duo, he said, “communi- data that was already available. required in the Fourth Amendment of the cated while they were in the United States The House and Senate GOP leadership Bill of Rights. The Justice Department can to other members of al Qaeda who were cynically adopted the White House strate- get warrants from a special court called the overseas, but we didn’t know they were gy of using the issue before the November FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance here until it was too late.” It would be dif- elections to paint the Democrats as weak Act) Court, a 10-judge panel established ficult for the president to come up with a on national security if they didn’t vote for in 1978 expressly for that purpose. In worse example to make his point. legislation to gut our Fourth Amendment. emergencies, the NSA may even conduct The various official 9/11 investigations However, although the House passed its domestic surveillance for 72 hours without showed that the FBI, CIA, and NSA all version of the bill (H.R. 5825) on Septem- a warrant. But by the end of that three-day were monitoring Hazmi and Mihdhar. In ber 28 (see House vote #40 in the “Conser- period, it must obtain a warrant. Over the San Diego, the duo even lived with Ab- vative Index,” page 26), the Senate did not past nearly 30 years, the FISA Court has dussattar Shaikh, an acknowledged under- vote on its version (S. 3931) prior to ad- denied only a handful of the thousands of cover asset of the FBI. The two also had journment. It is very likely that Congress warrant requests. And there is no indica- regular contacts with San Diego area mili- will try to enact some kind of expansion tion that the 72-hour emergency provision tant jihadists under FBI surveillance, such of executive surveillance authority, in line has been inadequate to deal with serious as Omar al-Bayoumi and Osama Mustafa. with what the White House is demanding, terrorist threats. FBI Agent Stephen Butler made repeated during the lame-duck session. ■ On August 17 of this year, U.S. Dis- efforts to have them arrested, but he was trict Judge Anna Diggs Taylor ruled that overruled from above. Readers are encouraged to contact their senators in the president’s warrantless searches are Moreover, a review of the 9/11 hijack- opposition to this legislation. To send an online letter, unconstitutional. The administration im- ers’ visa applications by a panel of former go to: www.capwiz.com/jbs/home/ THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 15
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  18. 18. ELECTIONS Saving Our Elections America’s once proud and trustworthy elections are being undermined, but concerned citizens can take steps to restore the integrity of our electoral process. by Kurt Hyde T he electoral problems that have been simmering in America for a long time and that surfaced in the 2000 Gore/Bush race haven’t gone away. Maryland Governor Rob- ert Ehrlich has recently urged scrapping that state’s recently- purchased electronic voting ma- chines and replacing them with paper ballots for this upcoming election because of technical and AP human “problems” with the ma- chines in the primaries. Ameri- Popular mail-in ballots, as shown here in Tukwila, Washington, in the 2005 election, invite repeat ca’s once proud and trustworthy voting, in other words multiple voting done through using assumed names. elections are being undermined. Ballots are increasingly being counted behind closed doors or inside a foundation of fraudulent voter registra- guess how many votes can be cast ille- electrical circuitry without verification by tions or sloppy administration of the voter gally, but the Washington Times reported public scrutiny. registration lists. Destroy fraudulent voter on October 26, 2002 that Larry Gray, a registrations and repeat voting will col- former sanitation director for Helena, Types of Fraud lapse like a house of cards. Arkansas, pleaded guilty when charged Electoral fraud is typically grouped into Another type of repeat voting is accom- with submitting more than 25 absentee one of two categories, retail fraud or plished through “early voting.” Early vot- ballots. The article went on to say that au- wholesale fraud. Retail fraud is where ing, supposedly an answer to the problems thorities believed he had applied for 200 each fraudulent vote requires a separate of long lines on election day, is now help- absentee ballots and submitted 98 ballots act of fraud. Wholesale fraud occurs when ing repeaters to vote early and vote often. in the Democratic primary. U.S. Attorney a large number of fraudulent votes are gen- Absentee ballot fraud, which is often H.E. Cummins said of the case: “This is erated by only one act of fraud. done by people who have contact with the just one guy. We believe there were other The best-known and undoubtedly the elderly, can be done through “assisting” people engaged in that primary and other most frequently used type of retail fraud the elderly or the visually impaired to mark elections that basically involved the same is “repeat voting.” Repeaters are people a ballot — and then marking the ballot dif- type of scheme.” who vote numerous times in an election ferently than directed. Or correctly marked Another retail vote fraud technique, this under assumed names, names taken from ballots might be switched with fraudulent one used by vote counters, is “the short people who have died, moved away, never ballots while transporting them to a mail pencil” — where a vote counter conceals existed, or just names chosen from a phone center. Of course, there’s always the old pencil lead under a fingernail to make book. Obviously, repeat voting is built on technique of requesting an absentee ballot additional marks on a ballot in order to under an assumed name, which is essen- invalidate one or more votes by causing Kurt Hyde is a computer professional and a student tially just repeat voting using the mail. “over-votes.” The term over-vote refers to of elections. Without an investigation we can only a ballot that has more votes than the num- THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 17
  19. 19. ELECTIONS — an obvious invitation for some- master passwords. And here, too, vote one on the inside to swap boxes of totals are usually transmitted to a central Because the past “fixes” haven’t incoming ballots for pre-punched location for consolidating and reporting worked, politicians in Washington are ballots with desired outcomes. which is another chance for someone to The first direct-recording elec- fraudulently alter the numbers if totals currently submitting numerous bills tronic voting machines (DREs), aren’t audited. to help us. Unfortunately, all the bills which are essentially computer- In a recent experiment conducted at recorded balloting systems, also Princeton University, white-hat hackers, covering voting currently in Congress provide the means to cheat. The people who obtain permission beforehand will only make things worse. system can be rigged by anyone to hack into computer systems for the hon- with inside access — whether that orable purpose of finding security flaws be the programmers who write in order that they can be fixed, were able ber allowed for a contest. Therefore, none the programs inside, the manufacturers or to alter the outcome in a sample election of the votes for that contest will count. subcontractors who make the equipment, using methods available to voters. In this Wholesale fraud, which was almost non- the caretakers of the equipment between controlled election with five voters, four existent in our Republic prior to the 1890s, elections, the technicians who install up- of them voted for George Washington and erupted when mechanical lever voting ma- dates to the equipment, or in some cases only one for Benedict Arnold. But the ma- chines were first put in use. It was then pos- the election administrators who have the chine totals showed a victory for Benedict sible for someone with Arnold by a vote of three inside access to commit to two. Put simply, it is one act of fraud — such impossible for a voter to as adjusting the counts ensure his vote was cast on the voting machines’ and counted correctly counter wheels — and with paperless DREs. change a relatively large The granddaddy of number of votes. all wholesale fraud sys- Wholesale election tems will come if, like fraud became easier many politicians desire, when America was the United States imple- blessed with the inven- ments Internet voting. In- tion of the punch card ternet voting was almost voting system. Punch forced on our military card voting systems en- people for their absentee abled wholesale elec- ballots under the FVAP tion fraud via numerous (Federal Voting Assis- security breaches: tance Plan). The project • By tampering with was put on hold follow- the punch card “book.” ing a scathing security With most punch card analysis of it by a num- systems, the voter is ber of highly renowned dependent on a book, computer experts. under which the punch card is inserted to re- How Serious move the correct chad. Is This Problem? If that book page is A problem with esti- tampered with by either mating how serious the a voter or an election threat of voter fraud is worker, the voters can today is that any inves- be misdirected to punch tigation of retail vote the wrong chads. fraud must start with • By tampering with voter registration lists, the computers that but verifications of such count the ballots. lists, and even the inves- • By counting punch tigations themselves, AP cards at a centralized Punch card ballots are also open to vote fraud. In the 2000 election, over are frequently blocked counting center that is 46,000 votes were thrown out because voters left dimples or hanging chads. by politicians or by not open to the public It’s easy to have these votes disqualified. courts. Stealing Elec- 18 THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006
  20. 20. tions, a book by Wall Street Journal editorial board mem- ber John Fund, lists a number of aborted attempts at investi- gating vote fraud. One failed attempt hap- pened in 1997 when the U.S. House of Representatives de- manded that the Justice De- partment prosecute Herman- dad Mexicana Nacional for allegedly registering hundreds of illegal voters in a close con- gressional race, but “federal immigration officials refused to cooperate with the probe citing ‘privacy’ concerns.” AP Another was the 1997 U.S. Wave of the future: New electronic voting machines like those shown here are being adopted across Senate investigation of a U.S. the country, but the machines are susceptible to vote fraud on a massive scale by anyone who has Senate race in Louisiana that access to the machines before the elections. “found more than 1,500 cases in which two voters used the same social security number. But further One disastrous piece of legislation in this sary to keep voter registration lists honest, investigations collapsed after Democratic respect was the National Voter Registra- but the opposite is true. senators walked off the probe, calling it tion Act. Better known by its nickname, One indication that HAVA’s centraliza- unfair, and then-Attorney General Janet the Motor Voter Act, this unconstitutional tion of power will be dangerously abused Reno removed FBI agents from the case law required, among other things, that can be found in a USA Today front-page because it wasn’t ‘bipartisan.’” And “The states “provide individuals with the op- story of August 17. Political action com- ACLU once sued the U.S. Attorney in San portunity to register to vote at the same mittees are focusing their election efforts Francisco because he matched voting rec- time that they apply for a driver’s license” on Secretary of State contests in numerous ords against lists of legal immigrants who and that states allow citizens to “register states. Of course, under HAVA, the reg- were not yet citizens.” In yet another in- to vote by mail using mail-in-forms.” The istration lists would fall under control of stance of attempted fraud fighting where requirement to allow mail-in registration the Secretary of State in each state. The mail was sent to addresses listed by voters forms virtually shut down most states’ vot- PACs wouldn’t be spending their money to verify residency, and personal contact ing identification requirements. on these races without very good reason with voters was attempted when mail was Worse yet was the so-called Help Amer- — such as the thought of being able to returned as undeliverable, the effort was ica Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA). This law, change the outcomes of future elections. blocked because it allegedly constituted which purportedly was intended to create Of course, because the past “fixes” harassment or intimidation of minorities. “minimum standards for states to follow haven’t worked, politicians in Washington How credible are the allegations that in several key areas of election administra- are currently submitting numerous bills to are made in regard to voter registration tion,” is currently forcing the states, coun- help us. Unfortunately, all the bills cover- clean-ups? One example can be found in ties, and municipalities to purchase ADA ing voting currently in Congress will only Stealing Elections by John Fund. Miami (Americans with Disabilities Act) compli- make things worse. For example, H.R. City Commissioner Hernandez tried to ant electronic voting equipment, which as 4844, sponsored by the supposedly con- discredit the charges of absentee ballot we now know can be susceptible to whole- servative Congressman Henry Hyde (R- fraud in the 1997 mayoral race by using sale voting fraud. Ill.), would require a government-issued the “racism” card. The Miami Herald re- In addition to the required electronic picture ID in order to register or vote. This ported that a woman who was wearing a voting machines, HAVA also mandates bill is essentially a national ID card in dis- bug for a law enforcement agency taped that states maintain a statewide voter reg- guise. Also, it assumes that the IDs will be him saying “he could sway public opinion istration database that “shall serve as the tamper-proof while the continuously im- by accusing the paper of racism and trying single system for storing and managing the proving technology behind making phony to suppress Hispanic political power.” official list of registered voters throughout ID cards has already made it feasible to the State.” This requirement not only forc- equip repeat voters with false photo IDs. How Has the Problem Been “Fixed”? es centralization of the voting process — a Notably, too, this legislation does nothing Our politicians in Washington, far from bad thing — but in essence establishes a to break the blockages stopping the clean- being a solution to our electoral problems, framework for a national ID card. Some up of voter registration lists. have been among the worst of the causes. say this statewide voter database is neces- Congressman Rush Holt (D-N.J.) has THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006 19
  21. 21. ELECTIONS other. If additional votes are added, such as with LBJ in 1948, the additional voters will be last on the sheets. On the new com- puterized sign-in forms we use in Texas, I sign next to my name. If someone stuffs the ballot box, the additional signatures are next to the names, and there’s no way to see in what order they were signed.) States and localities must be allowed to use paper ballots, and any paperless com- puterized voting equipment needs to be upgraded to include a voter-verified paper ballot. Complementing the paper ballots, audits need to be done to ensure honesty — audits initiated in response to local concerns. Current audit advocates want the choices of precincts to be audited to be made in Washington, D.C., or in state capitols using random selection or math- ematical variances to determine the pre- cincts to be audited. These choices should AP Tale of the tape: When electronic voting machines are tampered with, they tabulate votes be made by the candidates with the losing incorrectly in the final tally, and then they erase the programs that changed the vote totals. candidates getting the lion’s share of the choices. Also, instead of just counting the submitted H.R. 550, a bill that would re- The grand prize for worst bill goes to voter-verified ballots and comparing them quire electronic voting equipment to have Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.). to the computer totals, the precinct audits a paper trail, something 27 states already Her bill, S. 450, calls for a study of the should include a mailing to the voters to require and 23 others are likely to require possibility of Internet voting as well as In- verify that they exist. soon. H.R. 550 would require 2 percent of ternet voter registration. S. 450 would also States considering simple laws for re- the precincts to be recounted. At first, that mandate “election day” voter registration. quiring paper trails in electronic voting sounds good: recounts, or audits, are im- Perhaps someone should tell her that elec- can just copy New Hampshire’s law from portant and states need to pass laws autho- tion day registration is no different from 1994. That state merely modified two rizing them, but H.R. 550 would centralize “same day” registration — a concept that paragraphs in the state’s election laws to the power to decide which precincts get has earned the bad reputation it has. Sena- require voting machines to be of the kind audited in the hands of a federal agency, tor Clinton also wants a “Study on Encour- that “reads the voter’s choice on a paper the Election Assistance Commission. In aging Government Employees to Become ballot.” If New Hampshire can afford to addition to being unconstitutional, that’s Poll Workers.” This part of her proposal implement this law, it’s likely that all states too much power to be put into the hands of would be added by making election days can. New Hampshire still doesn’t have a a few people in Washington, and an open federal holidays. If her bill passes, we state sales tax or a state income tax. invitation for abuse. could find ourselves voting via the Internet States could also follow the recommen- Also, this bill would mandate that if the in an election controlled and monitored by dations of a jury that investigated Chicago’s paper records disagree with the computer government employees who have a vested 1908 primary elections, recommendations counts, the paper records would be cor- interest in the outcome. Fortunately, even that, unfortunately, have never been passed rect. Paper ballots can be and have been our current Congress has had enough sense in any state. They recommended that elec- tampered with in the past. If there’s a dis- not to pass this legislation. tion judges and clerks should be selected crepancy between them, there’s something for elections service in a manner similar to wrong and an investigation should be initi- What Should the States Do? jury duty, with no candidates, office hold- ated to determine what happened. A better The states need to resume their constitu- ers, nor political patronage job holders bill than H.R. 550 would be a resolution tional right and obligation to write effec- allowed to serve. Their recommendations informing the states that the U.S. Congress tive election laws. Voter registration lists would have allowed for some government is aware of these types of voting discrep- need to be open to verification by the pub- employees in the process to add procedural ancies and that failure by the states to im- lic, and voters should be required to sign- and technical expertise, but not to partici- plement paper trails, some form of audit- in on election day using consecutive sign- pate in collecting or counting ballots. They ing, and voter registration clean-up could in sheets rather than signing next to their also recommended identification of voters result in Congress’ using its constitutional names on voter registration lists. (Consec- via signature or thumbprint. authority to refuse to seat a member in a utive sign-in sheets are numbered, and the In the long run, state legislatures must questionable election. voters sign their signatures one after the reverse a number of long-term trends. ■ 20 THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006
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  23. 23. CONGRESS How They Voted Our final look at the 109th Congress shows how every representative and senator voted on key issues, including warrantless surveillance, the border fence, and military tribunals. House Vote Descriptions 31 Foreign Aid. The fiscal 2007 for- eign aid appropriations bill (H.R. 5522) would authorize $21.3 billion for foreign operations and economic as- sistance in fiscal 2007. Though foreign aid is supposed to help the poor and suf- fering in other countries, it instead has served to prop up economically deficient socialist regimes and to transfer wealth from American taxpayers to third-world elites. The House passed H.R. 5522 on June 9, 2006 by a vote of 373-34 (Roll Call 250). We have assigned pluses to the “nays” be- cause foreign aid is unconstitutional and unworkable. 32 Iran Military Operations. Rep- resentative Maurice Hinchey (D- N.Y.) offered this amendment to the 2007 Defense appropriations bill (H.R. 5631). The amendment would bar any funds to initiate military operations in Iran unless it is in accordance with Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, which delegates to AP Two heads are better than one: With Iran belligerently seeking nuclear weapons, President Bush Congress alone the power to declare war. (one head) has forwarded the possibility that he may declare war against Iran. The Constitution, The House rejected Hinchey’s amend- however, says only Congress (many heads) may commit our nation to war. ment by a vote of 158-262 on June 20, About This Index ‘‘T he Conservative Index” rates congressmen based on their ad- herence to constitutional principles of limited government, The average House score for this index (votes 31-40) is 48 per- cent; the average Senate score is 53. Two congressmen earned perfect fiscal responsibility, national sovereignty, and a traditional foreign scores of 100: Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and Ron Paul (R-Texas). policy of avoiding foreign entanglements. Preserving our Constitu- We encourage readers to examine how their own congressmen tion, the freedoms it guarantees, and the moral bedrock on which it voted on each of the 10 key measures as well as overall. Our first is based is what the word “conservatism” once meant — and how it index for the 109th Congress (votes 1-10) appeared in our August 8, is being applied here. 2005 issue, our second index (votes 11-20) appeared in our Decem- To learn how any representative or senator voted on the key mea- ber 12, 2005 issue, and our third index (votes 21-30) appeared in our sures described herein, look him up in the vote charts. The scores July 10, 2006 issue. are derived by dividing a congressman’s conservative votes (pluses) We also encourage readers to commend legislators for their conser- by the total number he cast (pluses and minuses) and multiplying vative votes and to urge improvement where needed. For congressional by 100. contact information go to www.thenewamerican.com/congress/. ■ 22 THE NEW AMERICAN • OCTOBER 30, 2006