CBS News blogger John Bentley posts in his “From The Road” blog from Pemberton, New Jersey, as he follows the campaign trail of presumed GOP nominee Senator John McCain of Arizona.
Recently, the United States Supreme Court has given the ruling that the detainees at Guantanamo Bay do have rights. Also, the Supreme Court has given the ruling that the detainees are allowed access for civilian trials. This is one ruling that seems to have dealt a critical blow to the GOP.
United States President George W. Bush had condemned the ruling. Now, presumed GOP nominee Senator John McCain of Arizona has blasted the ruling. McCain said that this is one of the worst decisions in United States’ history. He issued the argument and complaint that this ruling will allow the courts to be flooded with all sorts of suits against the government.
McCain said: “Our first obligation is the safety and security of this nation and the men and women who defend it. This decision will harm our ability to do that.”
This argument can be tied to McCain’s main campaign stance, Iraq. So far, Iraq has been the main an only platform for McCain’s presidential run. Consistent poll results show that the economy is the number one topic amongst most voters. Iraq continues to play second string to the economy.
McCain is tasked of trying to make Iraq the number one issue. But, this could act as a deep-cutting doubled-edged sword for McCain. Consistent poll results also show that more Americans have become frustrated with the war.
McCain’s rival for the US Presidential elections, presumed Democratic nominee Senator Barack Obama of Illinois, welcomed it. Obama said that this ruling is a rejection of the Bush administration’s attempt to find legal loopholes. He also used this to attack McCain of supporting another failed policy of Bush.
Obama said: “This is an important step toward reestablishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus.”
McCain plans to use this as ammunition against Obama.
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina joined McCain’s stance. He said: “What does this mean to America? It means we’re not as safe as we used to be, because now, the decision as to who an enemy combatant is, is not going to be made by military personnel tribunals, trained in the matters of warfare, but that decision will be made by the most liberal judges the detainees can find, in the most liberal jurisdictions with no standards, and some of these people are going to be let go simply because they found the right judge with absolutely no criteria as to how to release.”
It is inevitable that this will be used as ammunition against Obama in the US Presidential Elections.
With the Ron Paul Revolution, members of the GOP distancing themselves from Bush, and the GOP trying to fix its tarnished image, this ruling may not be enough to mobilize the GOP base.
But, this should prove to be very interesting ammunition. This is like a magic bullet that both Obama and McCain could use against one another. Obama can use it to attack McCain on Bush’s policies. McCain can use it to attack Obama on not supporting national security.