U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-16) today issued the following statement in support of the amendment offered by Representatives Jeff Landry (LA-03), Louie Gohmert (TX-01) and Scott Rigell (VA-02) to the National Defense Authorization Act:
"I have listened to the concerns from my constituents, and I'm pleased that we can allay those concerns today. The Landry/Gohmert/Rigell amendment explicitly re-affirms and protects the constitutional rights of American citizens, and states clearly that no citizens' constitutional rights can be denied under the provisions of the defense bill."
The base bill debated by the House today already states that the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) and the FY 12 NDAA detainee provisions do not allow for the detention of any person in the United States without the right of redress, affirming that all Americans have access to the Writ of Habeas Corpus. The Landry/Gohmert/Rigell Amendment further strengthens the protections on the law by stating that no citizens's constitutional rights will be denied in an Article III court pursuant to the AUMF.
"While it's critical that we protect the rights of American citizens, we should absolutely not exploit legitimate concerns in a misguided effort to extend our rights and privileges to foreign terrorists who attack our homeland," Rooney said. "The Landry/Gohmert/Rigell amendment stands in sharp contrast to the Amash amendment, which would compromise our national security in order to coddle foreign terrorists and enemy combatants."
Rooney served as a military prosecutor in the Army JAG Corps and taught constitutional and criminal law and West Point. He serves on the House Armed Services Committee and House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.