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September 03, 2007


They believe strict construction only applies selectively.
Don't like something? Ask for strict construction, to restrict it.
Court tells you no way can you do what you want? Ask for strict construction, to keep the courts from ruling against you.
Maybe we ought to require that they pass a test on the Constitution - make it one like I had in eighth grade (135 questions ... you had to read the document to answer any of them). If they can't pass eighth-grade civics-and-government, they shouldn't be qualified to be in government.

"Strict constructionist" has the same properties as "family values". It is void of potential for hypocrisy and it applies to other people but not the Republican ruling elite. I recently heard Lindsey Graham at presser declaring "I am not a srtict constructionist and I never have been."

Strict Constructionist Republican Elected Wingnuts. SCREWs; and loose ones at that.

This role is slated for Paul Reubens . An Actor with fantastic talent is required to massage the godlike depth of Sen Grahams geologic intelligence . Absotoutely

Frankly, you don't need to be a strict constructionist for this one to be an easy call. Like I said, a court ruled on it -- in particular, regarding Sen. Graham -- less than a year ago.

Does he get paid? Does he get credit for service time? Does he abide by "don't ask, don't tell"?

Seems imcompatible to me.

EW, if there was legal action resulting in the ruling from last year that you mentioned, then what was the penalty? And how is it possible then for him to ignore the court and repeat the offense? Isn't there supposed to be a chain of command here?

Sorry EP, should have addressed my comment above to you.

Albert Fall, I'm wondering about pay, too. Aravosis takes on Don't Ask Don't Tell here (thanks to emptywheel for the link).

phred, see the link in the post for details, but the consequences of the top military court's ruling was that a conviction was overturned because Graham had been a presiding judge. As far as I know, there were no consequences to Graham. It's noteworthy that his serving as a judge was the "Office" under consideration in that case. My understanding is that the question of whether military service, particularly reserve service, is an "Office" according to the Incompatibility Clause of Article I has not been addressed by the courts, because no one seems to have standing to bring the case. But to me the answer seems obvious: a colonel in the Air Force Reserve is clearly a US office. A WaPo article on Graham's Iraq visit noted that a Republican Congressman was called to serve in Iraq in 2003 but the order weas rescinded so he wouldn't have to resign.

Lindsay who inserted that nice little exchange that never happened into the DTA record to try to kill habeas faster-quicker?

Lindsay of Alito murder boards?

Lindsay who gets such great deals on rugs his nickname is Aladinsay?

Do all the troops Lindsay gets to meet know that he was called up in 2003, but "opted out"?

Yep, 'strict constructionist' means 'judgifying I like'.

Of course, since the Senate is the World's Greatest Private Members' Club, none of his colleagues will say a word.

Well, we know he isn't sitting on military judicial panels anymore (is he?); so what the hell exactly is Graham doing over there? Trolling the latrine stalls?


you speak of lawyers arguing about the law. You may or may not be right, but you are not allowing for the "process." Obviously, Sen Graham is ok as far as the process is concerned.

Probably somewhere slowly racheting it's way up the steep slope of judicial procedure is an argument for and against your concerns.

It's all about sex doncha know (--- what with god's obsession for homosexuals and all). By upholding the prurient principles of Republican family values, ole Lindsey has been given pass as long as he adheres to Don't Ask Don't Tell.

bmaz, his website bio says he is an instructor with Air Force JAG and, in the first Gulf War, "his duties included briefing pilots on the law of armed conflict, preparing legal documents for deploying troops, and providing legal services for family members of the South Carolina Air National Guard." Frankly I think the Constitutional issues would be lesser if he were just cleaning latrines, or even doing peacekeeping missions. Instead we've got a sitting Senator working part-time literally on behalf of the administration to resolve legal matters.

Jodi, the Constitution is at the link I posted above and is meant for any citizen to read, including me and you. It is a document of the people, not "for lawyers only." The part of it that says no Senator can simultaneously hold another US office is right there in Article I.

Yes, if the system says that things are fine, then they ARE fine.

This is the mentality of many folks who lack the art of critical thinking.

It's scary.


I don't pretend to be a lawyer, but I see your point. But remember that it was Senator Graham who was one of the few Republicans protesting the lack of legal representation and the trial procedures set up at Gitmo. He is very, very circumspect as regards the law.

All I am saying is that if he is doing this, he must have some legalistic basis for his actions. And you and I both know that the streets around the Supreme Court are littered with people who have different interpretations of the Constitution.

(and for complete disclosure) He the only current Senator I have ever met, and when I met him it was at my grandmoms house in SC. He was very nice.

Graham was grossly duplicitous in his supposed "concern" about the rights, procedures and other matters attendant to Gitmo, detainees and torture. It was a CYA ruse while he McCain and Sectre cravenly sold out the Constitution. He has no honor.

Emptypockets - I am inclined to agree with you in relation to Graham's involvement in use of force and targeting decisions, i.e. rules of engagement, which is exactly what such pilot briefings are on the part of a JAG representative.

Wasn't Nat'l Guard duty one of the reasons the WH gave for firing USAG Iglesias? Your news is flabbergasting, indeed.


the White House can't fire a US Senator.

Jodi, David Iglesias was a United States attorney fired by the White House.


that is true. My point about the Senator is simply answering readerOfTeaLeaves's implicit comparison of Senator Graham and USAG Inglesias.

Personally, I'd hold a Senator to at least as high a moral standard to avoid conflicts of interest as I would a US attorney.

And obviously with Graham there's the additional separation of powers problem that wasn't there for Iglesias, who was already in the exec branch. Not to mention the specific Constitutional prohibition.

So I'd agree with you, Jodi, that Graham's violation is much worse than what Iglesias was (claimed to have been) fired for.

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