Obama Will Not Veto Defense Authorization

I said this about the detainee provisions in the conference Defense Authorization bill.

It seems to me the language does enough to avoid a veto from the cowardly Obama, but still does terrible damage to both the clarity of national security roles and overall investigative expertise.

And I was absolutely correct: Obama’s aides have announced he will not veto the bill.

Update: Here’s the specific language of the capitulation.

We have been clear that “any bill that challenges or constrains the President’s critical authorities to collect intelligence, incapacitate dangerous terrorists, and protect the Nation would prompt the President’s senior advisers to recommend a veto.”  After intensive engagement by senior administration officials and the President himself, the Administration has succeeded in prompting the authors of the detainee provisions to make several important changes, including the removal of problematic provisions. While we remain concerned about the uncertainty that this law will create for our counterterrorism professionals, the most recent changes give the President additional discretion in determining how the law will be implemented, consistent with our values and the rule of law, which are at the heart of our country’s strength. This legislation authorizes critical funding for military personnel overseas, and its passage sends an important signal that Congress supports our efforts as we end the war in Iraq and transition to Afghan lead while ensuring that our military can meet the challenges of the 21st century.

As a result of these changes, we have concluded that the language does not challenge or constrain the President’s ability to collect intelligence, incapacitate dangerous terrorists, and protect the American people, and the President’s senior advisors will not recommend a veto.  However, if in the process of implementing this law we determine that it will negatively impact our counterterrorism professionals and undercut our commitment to the rule of law, we expect that the authors of these provisions will work quickly and tirelessly to correct these problems.

Update: Here’s the roll call. the Dems split right down the middle, 93-93, which leads me to suspect Pelosi told Boehner the Republicans had to come up with the bulk of the yes votes, which might be why the House leadership had to stall on the vote for a period.

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9 Responses to Obama Will Not Veto Defense Authorization

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emptywheel @johnson_carrie Is he a candidate for the job? Just seems awkward time, particularly given Welch's clusterfuck. @lrozen
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emptywheel @johnson_carrie How long has he been acting? @lrozen
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emptywheel @johnson_carrie Meanwhile what's up w/DOJ hiring a new PIN head at this time? @lrozen
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emptywheel Would it be extreme of me to suggest Ronald Brockmeyer be asked to pay his taxes in TesticalCoin? http://t.co/wyrJHLS7a1
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bmaz Okay, here at the TeePee Taproom, the natives on the patio have a version of a cross between bocce ball and corn hole that is questionable.
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emptywheel @NickBaumann Moving trains are overrated. Think of all the nice train restaurants. @amtrak
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emptywheel Already enjoying @keithellison's tweets from trip to Selma with his daughter this weekend. Definite follow.
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bmaz Holf crap, there is some SeaSquawks fan here at the @TeePeeMex trying to explain how BillBel and the Pats didn't steal lunch+drink milkshake
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bmaz .@gideonstrumpet My name is Lucifer, and I'm in need of some restraint. #SoHaveSomeCourtesy #EveryCopIsACriminal
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JimWhiteGNV Let's see. Fifty degrees, light mist. Perfect football weather. But let's play @GatorZoneBB anyway! http://t.co/Q1H4y5qBY2
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