“Engaged in Combat”

Last night, Rand Paul said this:

Well, words do make a difference, and I would feel a little more comfortable if we would get in writing a letter that says he doesn’t believe killing people not actively engaged in combat with drones in America, on American soil, is constitutional.

Today, Eric Holder wrote Paul this letter.

It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional question. “Does the President have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?” The answer to that question is no.

Aside from noting that Holder took out the “actively” modifier in Paul’s statement (though Paul said some version of this so many times last night that Holder’s formulation might be justified by one of those other ones), I’d have to say that Paul has only managed to move the pea under a different shell in this shell game.

Because now we need a definition of what “engaged in combat” means.

 

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27 Responses to “Engaged in Combat”

Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz Wow, Jerry Brown's letter to Rick Scott is throwing serious shade. https://t.co/WFjA2ehLva
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bmaz RT @carolrosenberg: BREAKING Navy reinstates nurse who refused to force-feed at Guantánamo. @MiamiHerald https://t.co/6PS3DYSg1L @cori_crid
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bmaz @aliarau @RebekahLSanders @violentfemmes The concert is a better use of your time than the mental midgets at #azleg
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bmaz RT @amilst44: From day one I thought "evident partiality" the best issue, not procedural missteps. NFLPA did not agree to sham arbitrations.
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bmaz @RMFifthCircuit Who knows what sticks in the crania of appellate judges? There is always hope!
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bmaz RT @amilst44: Hopefully 2d cir. en banc will take note of NFL classless move to oppose extension for new counsel. https://t.co/DaKRLNgWH7
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bmaz This from CRS is an excellent look at what Garland on SCOTUS would likely change from Scalia https://t.co/hjz0INqHcU
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bmaz @BlanksSlate Yeah. Parts of it old stuff you can skim, but some worthwhile background in there. It's long, but worthwhile.
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bmaz @DanCBarr Including McCain himself I bet.
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bmaz @ScottGreenfield Also, you KNOW Preet is beaming with pride.
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bmaz @ScottGreenfield Ugh, do I have to pick a side on this one? No Hastert old age benefit of doubt I guess.
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