Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Obama Lawyer Defends NDAA In Court

August 10, 2012 by  

Obama Lawyer Defends NDAA In Court
The National Defense Authorization Act authorizes the indefinite detention of American citizens at a facility like Guantanamo.

Though the mainstream media are mum, the President’s ability to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens expected of terrorist activities was argued in a Federal court in lower Manhattan on Tuesday; the judge’s attitude toward the provisions prompted the Obama Administration to file an appeal.

In May, Judge Katherine Forrest ruled in favor of activists and reporters — including such notable names as Chris Hedges, Noam Chomsky, Naomi Wolf and Daniel Ellsberg — who claimed a section of National Defense Authorization Act, signed by President Barack Obama in December, could give the Federal government legal powers to detain any dissident voices. A preliminary injunction issued by Forest prevents the government from enforcing section 1021 of NDAA’s “Homeland Battlefield” provisions.

The section authorizes the indefinite detention at a facility like Guantanamo of American citizens who are deemed by agents of the government as follows:

A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.

In the four-hour hearing on Tuesday, the plaintiffs were asking that Forest make the injunction permanent, according to The Village Voice. During the hearing, Obama’s lawyer, Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Torrance, argued that the indefinite detention law was already in place before the President signed NDAA last New Year’s Eve as a part of the Authorization for the Use of Military Force passed by Congress following 9/11. He also stated that the plaintiffs’ arguments were unfounded because the law had not yet been used in the manner they feared that it would. Furthermore, he told Forest that because she had blocked a part of Congressional legislation, she had overstepped the power of the judiciary.

Forrest disagreed, citing Alexander Hamilton in Federalist Paper Number 78: “Where the will of the legislature, declared in its statutes, stands in opposition to that of the people, declared in the Constitution, the judges ought to be governed by the latter rather than the former. They ought to regulate their decisions by the fundamental laws, rather than by those which are not fundamental.”

The government, it seems, cares not for the will of the courts or of the people, according to another statement by Torrance. He admitted that because the government does not specify whether it is using NDAA provisions or Authorization for the Use of Military Force provisions in detentions, it could sidestep any court-issued blockage of indefinite detention.

Forrest has not yet issued a decision as to whether she will make the injunction permanent, but the Obama Administration has already appealed to a higher court to be sure that it will not lose its ability to indefinitely detain Americans.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Obama Lawyer Defends NDAA In Court”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at

  • Tom Cook

    Thank goodness for the occasional reasoning judge.

    • ChristyK

      The NDAA states “A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.” This is exactly what our government has been doing in Libya, Egypt, and Syria. I guess we should be able to lock up our government officials (starting with the pres.) since they are currently supporting al-Qaeda and associated forces in at least these three nations while we are fighting the same groups in Iraq and afganistan. Can these people be anymore inconsistent?

      • Kate8

        ChristyK – This is exactly what Pete was calling for on the latter part of his show today.

        It seems that it’s been uncovered that John McCain, Lindsey Graham (and who knows how many other people in Congress), as well as O & Co….have all been funding Al CIAda in these Islamic wars. Now, since the NDAA clearly states that anyone aiding this group will be arrested and detained indefinitely, without trial… well, by their own laws, they MUST ALL BE ARRESTED AND DETAINED…PERMANENTLY. In fact, Obama has claimed that they can be dispatched at will…

        Well, it seems to me that this is a perfect signal for the military to ROUND THEM ALL UP. Including Obama. And subject them to the dictates of their own laws which they intended for us.

        In fact, he’s calling upon any other of the CIA’s lone-wolf shooters to turn the tables and get the guys who have turned on us. These people claim the right to take us out… but we don’t have the same right of reciprocity? THEY ARE THE CRIMINALS. They are murdering us by the thousands every single day, in myriad ways. They are robbing us blind, making millions homeless and hungry. And they are moving to take away any chance we have for self-preservation. It’s long past time for us to get some grit and say ENOUGH.

        The Bible tells us that the wicked will be snared in their own traps that they set up for us. This seems like the perfect opportunity.

        Geeze, I love this guy. He’s a real man.

      • TIME

        Dear Kate,

        Let alone how many millions all over the world have been killed by lesser ACT’S / Alledged Laws, from the same gang of Criminals in our De Facto Gov over the last 150 years.
        At the root of this problems is where we need to start thats the 41st Congress. And thats not really the start, but its when we all became “Domestic.’s”

        As amatter of fact – All of you need to look that word up in Blacks law, understand what place we all fit in under “DOMESTIC RULE / LAW.”

        After that you will understand that all you think you know is not what it really is.

        Its not; { we the people } and it has not been since December 20th 1860.
        Its been;
        “WE the De Facto Corporation, known as the United States Inc.”
        Tell you DOMESTIC’S what you can and can’t do.

        Peace and Love

    • Eric

      Perhaps we should detain the president and the senate for an indefinite time as well. He has materially supported the Taliban and Al-Queda by working with their reps in Afghanistan to quiet things down for the government there.

  • Rocky Night

    If I say anything against Obama will I be labeled a terrorist?

    How can they worship such an egomaniac?

    Is this the America liberals swoon for?

    • TIME

      Dear Rocky,

      Yes saddly the “NEO QUASI LIBERAL’S” who are all nothing more – nor less than total “FAscist” want to do.

      Saddly what your missing is that just as many of these are R’s as D’s. ** OMG people will you PLEASE OPEN YOU MINDS and EYES!
      Read your reps – damm voting records and who voted for what.

      Not a single {TRUE Liberal} would ever say that the NDAA or the PA were or are good idea’s.

      Thats what all of you have to at least TRY to understand; “we are all being PLAYED” by not only the Criminals within the De Facto Gov.

      But by the “”Mass Media”” that means all of them even FOX – who ALL get their base intel from the very same people, AP, UP, UPI, etc…

      Who also infact not only own all the Medai outlets, but they also own all the “”MONEY”” SUPPLY, aka the FED the World Bank the IMF, etc.. as well your De Facto Gov and all Gov’s in Europe as well.

      When all of you can just get your heads around the fact that Nothing is what you think it is, only then can we start to STOP this Malicious gang of CRIMINALS.
      Look – its not just Barry Omen its all of them!

      Will you people PLEASE just look at {{who voted for the NDAA,}} the vote was of 535, only { 5 } members of both houses would “NOT” vote for this absurd NDAA – ACT!
      Here are a few that didn’t vote for this: Dr. Ron Paul, Allen West, Rand Paul. now all of you do your home work, if your state’s reps voted for it, well need I spell it out for you, will you keep them in the mix or get rid of them in November, thats if you still think your vote is worth anything!
      Do the right thing find someone who is not a “FASCIST PIG” as in someone who shares YOUR values – then get them in office.

      Check your local Rep’s record both houses, if they voted for any of these absurd ACTS / Bills / Laws or what ever you want to call them. Well you know what to do about that – don’t you? Or do you?

      This Bill could not have passed with out 99.9% of the R’s too!
      “DIVIDE and DIVIDE again and again – then CONQUER!”
      Thats what they have done to all of us.

      Peace and Love

      • paradigmshift

        AMEN, TIME!!

      • Monarchist

        Right on Time! Their one snake with two heads or one bird with a left and right wing if you like? Truth is we have all been duped for some time. This is why nothing really changes In the big picture. They keep getting more power while we (the people) lose power. We truly are at the end of the game and when that most precious of commodities is completely lost we will not be able to regain it. FREEDOM! Nothing, No, Nothing is more important! Divinely bestowed upon us for a purpose… we in turn can freely acknowledge our belief and trust in He, who created us. Or we can freely denounce Him. He will honor both
        choices of our freewill. peculiar isn’t it? To see what’s happening to our nation the more and more people denounce Him?

      • Chester

        Do NOT place all, or even most, of the blame for the Patriot Act and all associated acts and bills passed since on Obama. He may have signed the NDAA and the one just previous to that, but he did NOT write them, or even ask for them. It seem to run in my memory that it was a Republican majority congress that did the Patriot act, at President Bush’s request. I see all sorts of things wrong with all our “Security” bills, but so many keep on pushing for even MORE security, fearing a terrorist is going to jump out from under their bed, or something. You don’t have to produce ID to ride a bus, or a train, yet, but you do have to show ID to get your tickets. Also, you aren’t screened and your luggage searched on those forms of transportation, yet, but both of those could easily be brought into play. Hijacking a train isn’t terribly easy, but hijacking a bus, and all the passengers aboard, would be relatively simple. And yes, there are still some targets you could mess up pretty thoroughly by crashing a by crashing a bus into them.

      • phideaux

        “He may have signed the NDAA and the one just previous to that, but he did NOT write them, or even ask for them. It seem to run in my memory that it was a Republican majority congress that did the Patriot act, at President Bush’s request.”:

        Obama could very easily have vetoed the bills. Since he did not we can conclude he approved of them. As far as the un-patriot act, he had a filibuster proof majority in the Senate and a super majority in the house and so could have easily repealed all or any part of the act and did not. The original un-patriot act, while passed in a small republican majority, could not have passed the senate without much democrat support otherwise it would have been easy for the democrats to filibuster it into obvilion.

      • my 2¢ worth

        When are you going to learn? Politicians are swingers, you can’t tell the fascists from the righteous without a program and no one is printing a program so you get what you vote for.. Get rid of these numb skulls and they’ll be replaced by another group of same numb skulls no matter what they tell you, no matter what they promise.. So, how can you rid politics of these vermin? You can’t BUT there is something you CAN do.. Change the law, tell these air heads that the 2, 4 or 6 years they’ve lucked into is not a contract but a limit and that at any time, any minute they can be run out of town and with it will end all perks, pension.. medical and absolutely no lecture privileges.. Let them know by law that if they [1] don’t work for the betterment of the people and [2] achieve a set quota of success in this endeavor then they get to stand in the unemployment line with the rest of us and and medical attention will be either by medicare or paid for out of their own pockets.. Then STICK TO THAT DEMAND!! Watch them whine then watch them do their jobs for fear of losing it (just as all workers face each and every day) then you won’t have to determine what the hell they are because they will be subject to the pink slip just as all middle America is.. Oh yes, and no volunteer resignation without cutting off benefits.. We wanna degrade our own citizens, tell them to “Get a job you moocher” but we allow the true moochers.. the inert lazies who are so contrary concerning our lives that they even disagree with their own kind.. Both sides are uncompromising idiots, rather, they view us as the idiots because we let them get away with slacking and enjoying the good life on our taxes.. Make EVERYBODY accountable.. NOW.. Chew on that.

    • Kinetic1

      First off, all liberals did not “swoon” for Obama, but given the choice we had at the time …. Second, liberals are the last people to want to see the military impounding Americans. Remember Kent state? Liberals protesting Nixon’s invasion of Cambodia? The Ohio National Guard is sent in? Do you recall any Liberals approving of this action.

      Look, Obama is not the “most Liberal candidate EVER” as espoused by the right wing talking heads. Shoot, every Democratic candidate for President is the most liberal ever as far as their concerned. Obama has done so many things that cross that moderate line towards conservative that it makes my head spin, but here we are again. I may not like some of what he has done, but I’m even less enthused by the nation as seen by Romney and Ryan. If we had enough of a coalition to get behind a third party I might consider him/her (sorry Ron Paul fans, he’s not the kind of alternative I was thinking of,) but there is little to no chance at this time. So that leaves me to either make a statement vote and risk the very real possibility of R/R, or stick with Obama, flawed as he is.

  • Whit

    If this section of the NDAA were applied, “A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.”,

    Obama, Hillary Clinton, other members of his cabinet and military leadership as well as the CIA should be held for providing aid to Al-Qaeda forces operating in Syria. Millions of dollars have been funneled to Al-Qaeda and other Jihadist mercenaries.

    • TIME

      Dear Whilt,

      Yes, you are 100% CORRECT with your post, in fact there is not but ” 5 ” in the CITY STATE of the District of Columbia that { did not} vote for this absurd Bill / Law / Act.

      Thus all who did are also guilty of OVERT and COVERT “TREASON” as they are all in fact the very Criminals whom they claim we are fighting.

      Peace and Love

    • paradigmshift

      AMEN, WHIT!!

    • Dave

      You my friend are so right. The courts should be told this and all the thugs in DC should be rounded up and put in detention by the military for there known actions. Take them down with their own law. Equal justice for all. I Imagine requests to release of documents for trial would put the fear of God in them.

  • Dwight Mann


  • roger gunderson

    Indefinite detention is wrong, wrong, wrong.

    • Gatlin2

      Why is it wrong . . . it worked for the Nazi party OPPS! I mean the National Soc .. well I guess you’re right. After all they need only to change the definition of their adversary. Weren’t the Japanese (US Citizens) chosen as the enemy last time? Who is next? First it was them, then it was us and now it’s me.

      • TIME

        Dear Gatlin,

        You sure have good Humor, I got a good belly roll, I loved your post!

        Peace and Love


    If you speak out in opposition of Obama, means you will not vote for him and also that you are a threat to his agenda. So to silence you, he will detain you and you will mystically disappear. He does not need you for a vote because he knows you will not vote for him. How do you win a election, eliminate the opposing votes.

    Why do you think the Black Panthers got away with intimidating people who voted in opposition for Obama?

    Homosexuals agenda uses the same tactics, anyone is opposition, they want to force them to change their stance or be silenced. The only people that are allowed freedom of speech are homosexuals and Obama obots, anyone else exercising their rights are haters, racist, bigots, and terrorists.

    • Jim

      In agreement

  • realsustainability

    The federal government does essentially what it wants, anyway. From ignoring immigration laws to torture to killing American citizens. If ANYONE responds in kind they are labeled terrorists and all manner of hell is unleashed upon them.So it appears that it’s a “do as I say, but don’t do as I do” conundrum when it comes to the Federal government and its people. Ask Randy Weavers family, the folks who were killed in Waco and those who were “NOT” waterboarded in Gitmo.The meaning of the Constitution has been crystal clear until the power brokers in Washington decide it’s in their way so it gets ignored at least and actively challenged otherwise. There is evil in Washington parading and political correctness and “leadership”. Let’s recognize it for what it is and “get it the hell outta there” at all costs.

  • Vet

    Anyone supporting the Republicans is now on obammy’s enemies list, he is already sending his brownshirts (doj) to harrass them into slience , crooks and thugs are running the dems campain ..

    • paradigmshift

      As conservative as I am, it is tiring to hear this stinking thinking. When are you going to see that the Bush administration opened the door for EVERYTHING that Obama (in his executive capacity) has been able to do, Bush’s signing statements. We have been given 2 candidates to choose from, Mitt was at the Bilderberg’s (secret) meeting in Chantilly, Va. but not Obama (this time) Mitt has been given the nod of approval by TPTB!

    • Chester

      Vet, has anyone from DOJ been knocking on YOUR door lately? If so, what did they tell you as to why they wanted to talk to you? You are pushing your imagination just a bit far, even for someone who has seen more than his share of (expletive deleted) coming down the ladder at him. Yes, I do know the old military rule that (expletive deleted) always rolls downhill, so things can’t quite as bad as you make them to be or you wouldn’t be here griping about them.

  • figmo

    They will use this (if the court can’t stop them) to detain gun owners as potential terrorists and consficate our firearms that way. To have absolute control over the people they must take our firearms. Hitler’s Germany, Stalin’s Russia and Castro’s cuba have proved that.

  • Sondra Clark

    The fed gov needs the states but do the states need the out of control federal government? Demand your senators audit the private banking cartel, commonly known as the Fed, and collect the taxes they have never paid which would probably make a big dent in the debt caused by the hired help in Washington that were elected to look out for the best interests of WE The People, instead many have sold out to big business. “The Creature From Jekyll Island” by G.E. Griffin. “Liberty Defined – 50 essential issues that affect our freedom” by Ron Paul. & go to this website “The Call to Arms:Message:Hemp Facts Also ” Alcahol Can Be A Gas” by Davi Blume. Final thought. Marbury VS. Madison decision in 1803 determined that”All laws which are repugnant to the Constitution are null & void” other court decisions agreed. Ron Paul for President or states rights.

    • paradigmshift

      I hate to keep repeating myself but… AMEN< SONDRA!!

      • SJJolly

        Solandra. The govenment made an investment bet on a green technology — solar power cells — company, Solandra, enroute to cutting down the $700 billion we are sending to OPEC annually for oil. It failed, due greatly to China dumping solar power cells on the American market. Which adds up, somehow, to Obama administration malfeasance?

      • phideaux

        “Which adds up, somehow, to Obama administration malfeasance?”

        Yes it does because they were told before the loan the company was in trouble and likely to fail even with the loan.

        Beswides, how did this turn into a discussion of Solindra?

  • http://personallibertydigest Bret

    Then can Obama and Congress be detained for supporting Al-Qaeda in Syria and Lebanon?

    • Antonio

      Thats totally awesome!! They should be the first ones to go absolutely, however, the police who are supposedly here to protect and serve us would only kill and detain us while they serve and protect them. Don’t expect any help from the military either…

  • roger gunderson

    Since 911 and G.W.B. our country has taken a turn for the worse. Millions of lives, trillions of dollars, shredding our constitution, loss of self-respect and respect from other countries, turned into a war-monger nation, worthless immigration laws, spineless congress, dictator president, and without Ron Paul in the running I see nothing but the same coming.

  • Ol’ Grey Ghost

    But the government has to be able to indefinitely detain people! How else is it supposed to learn all sorts of neat stuff about us?*

    *Please note facetious use of a whiny tone of sarcasm…

  • Dad

    In the meantime, this Muslim administration is letting a Gitmo terrorist go, negotiating in letting others go (5 to 1 trade), and nepalitano admits that terrorists are coming across the border. It is tough being an citizen with this administration’s anti-American agenda ( “remember g-d America”?)

  • Alex Frazier

    The very fact that they are fighting to retain the ability to do such a thing ought to make the whole nation nervous. In my opinion, it’s a simple matter to add:

    “A person [who is not a citizen of the United States,] who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.”

    It’s not like American citizens can’t be prosecuted if they commit war crimes, acts of terrorism, or other acts of hostility against the United States. These things are still against the law. But we have a right to due process in the sixth amendment of the Constitution.

    So since they can prosecute American citizens who are guilty as charged via the proper due process, and other legislation already authorizes them to detain non-citizen combatants, why in the world do they need the authority to detain American citizens without trial, legal counsel, formal charges, or any definitive sentence of correction upon conviction?

    Like I said, if the government wants power like that when they already have legal recourse to prosecute American citizens in a Constitutional manner, it can only be because they intend to use such authority.

    And that should scare everyone.

  • http://personallibertydigest gottaplenty

    This only goes to identify who our enemys are, We have a chance to clean it up come Nov. Get real, vote againt any incumbent , senate or house member that is in office now. Clean the place up!!!

  • SJJolly

    Rather amusing: The Righties outraged at the Obama admistration arguing in court to continue hard-right programs, notably indefinate detention for “enemies of the state”, which were instituted under the G.W. Bush administration. Maybe it’s a matter of who’s doing in, not of what is being done?

    As for the anti-terrorist legislation passed in response to 9/11/01, who is going to protect us from the protectors? An old adage: “The main difference between a fortress and a prison is which way the guns are pointing.”

    • Chester

      Thank you, sir or madam. The name gives not enough clue to say with any certainty, so I have to be somewhat pc and address to both.

    • Nancy in Nebraska

      I think most of us recognize that it’s the republicans AND the democrats! There’s NO difference. They’re both following the same agenda! They BOTH work for the SAME people. The two parties are just a facade to keep the people arguing back and forth! While we’re all playing the “us vs them” game “they can do whatever they want. In the meantime the people can blame whatever party they’re not part of! Everyone needs to wake up and see who is really calling the shots! It’s not the “republicans” OR the “democrats”!!! We need to cut the head off the snake!

  • TerriG

    Where have so many of you gotten such strange ideas? The fact is that if the US Government was doing all that you say they are doing, you wouldn’t even be posting on this blog. You would be in confinement. The fact that you aren’t proves that your argiment is full of nothing more than hot air.

    BTW, those 2 black panthers (yes,there were only 2) were prosecuted by bothe the Bush administration and the Obama administraion.

    • antonio

      A true blind sheep…
      Lets look at this from a different point of view. If a man grabbed you and threw you down then put a knife to your throat and said ” I am gonna rape u and if you make any noise I’m gonna kill ya”. In that situation would you accept the reality that you are about to get raped or would you just call it “hot air” until he finally penetrated you?

    • Brad

      terryG please send all links, documents and or any proof at all to your statement. All charges were dropped by Oblamya’s man butt loving brother Holder

    • Nancy in Nebraska

      TerriG, I don’t know WHERE you get your news, BUT THEY WERE NOT PROSECUTED!!! holder let them go!!! You need to find another news source! Yours makes you sound IGNORANT!!!

  • jopa

    TerriG;Stick around, next weeks article will be about the US government wanting to take your bag of Jolly Ranchers away.

    • Jay

      They’ve already taken lemon trees from peoples’s private property, why not Jolly Ranchers.

  • antonio

    Yep, the ndaa is really here and the higher court will rule it “ok” just like they did with obammycare. Then they will start calling anybody with a gun a “threat” and you will be detained indefinitely. If you think that the US military will fight for your “freedoms” jajajaja you better start rethinking that one real quick people, because they will be doing their job rounding all your asses up…

  • JDN

    We could all be detained just for paying taxes because it is in direct violation of the law for supplying material support to state sponsored terrorism .

  • The Christian American

    Engaged in hostilities against the United States. TERROR: a physical ot psychological act, violent in nature, committed to gain submission. Tell me, who’s terrorizing who? If an American citizen speaks out against the acts of the government, would that be considered terrorizing the govenment? Or, if the government commits acts that a citizen might consider terrorizing to his constitutional republic, would the citizen considered to be terrorized? NDAA is nothing but a bill to stifle the citizens, silence him. If we were living in Nazi Germany or the Communist Soviet, I’d expect this but America?

  • JeffH

    How Many Ways Does the Government Spy on You?

    by Judge Andrew Napoliano

    Gazillions. That’s the number of times the federal government has spied on Americans since 9/11 through the use of drones, legal search warrants, illegal search warrants, federal agent-written search warrants and just plain government spying.

    This is according to Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who, when he asked the government to tell him what it was doing to violate our privacy, was given a classified briefing. The senator – one of just a few in the U.S. Senate who believes that the Constitution means what it says – was required by federal law to agree not to reveal what spies and bureaucrats told him during the briefing.

  • Pingback: Liberty, Never Forget : Personal Liberty Digest™

  • Pingback: Liberty, Never Forget | Wichita Observer


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.