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National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. LANDRY. Mr. Chairman, I rise as a proud member of the Tea Party. I opposed the debt ceiling. I opposed some of the CRs. I opposed our involvement in Libya. I'm a strict constructionist when it comes to the Constitution. When I joined this body, I raised my hand to God and swore to uphold the Constitution and protect it from all threats both foreign and domestic. I am a veteran.

With this oath, my duty to protect our citizens' liberties is matched by my duty to protect their lives. That is exactly what the text of this bill, when combined with this amendment, does. It ensures that every American has access to our courts and ensures that they will not be indefinitely detained.

Equally important, our amendment does not harm our Armed Forces' ability to protect this Nation. Unfortunately, some in this body choose to believe that our soil here is not a battlefield in a war on terror. They want to treat the al Qaeda cell in Seattle differently or better than the al Qaeda cell in Yemen.

To yield to these Members to adopt their view does nothing to protect the liberties of our citizens. It only harms their safety. For that reason, I urge them to adopt this amendment.

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Mr. LANDRY. Mr. Chairman, this amendment turns the global fight on terror into a CSI investigation.

On its face, the supporters will say exactly, but let's see the results. The mission of those who fight the war on terror, now it's how do we prevent acts of terror from inflicting billions of dollars of damages to save lives?

You see, our law enforcement and prosecutorial system in this country is, by nature, an after-the-fact determination, meaning, we rarely have the ability to arrest a potential murderer until after he commits the crime. The deterrent is the length of the sentence for the murder that deters people from trying to harm or kill another.

That's not the case in terrorism. We set the punishment level to the severity of the crime. But the level under terrorism, there's no known level. What deters a person from flying a plane into a building? So how does passing this amendment protect the furtherance of that crime or would we simply be satisfied with investigating after the fact?

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