The Military Commissions Act passed the Senate today. Glenn Greenwald has excellent blow-by-blow coverage.
It allows the Pentagon to designate any US citizen, on US soil, as an "enemy combatant" and then lock them up indefinitely without a trial.
It revokes habeus corpus (aka the right of judicial review) for military commissions and enemy combatants.
It gives the President the right to interpret the Geneva Conventions as he sees fit, including but not limited to authorizing the torture of detainees.
It is now being rushed through committee so that the House can approve it before Congress recesses to go run for re-election.
This is from the people who keep telling us that terrorists hate us because "they hate our freedoms." Including the ones you just took away.
As per Greenwald:
During the debate on his amendment, Arlen Specter said that the bill sends us back 900 years because it denies habeas corpus protections. Then he voted for it.
Every single representative and senator who voted for this travesty should be voted out of office in November. I don't know who they think they're representing, but they sure don't represent us.
The last ray of hope is that the Supreme Court will throw it out as unconstitutional. This was the day Bush had in mind when he appointed Alito and Roberts, because he knows they'll back him. What will be more interesting is what Scalia does; he may in fact surprise us, as there is precedent for him taking an extreme dislike to this sort of law.(Thanks to Kevin Shofield)