U.S. Constitution (source: Wikipedia)

Of course, why anyone would need to introduce legislation to prohibit the killing of US citizens with no due process, I don’t know. Isn’t there already a piece of paper that prohibits such things?

Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) announced today that he will introduce legislation that would end the practice of targeting U.S. citizens for extrajudicial killing.  Earlier this year, The Washington Post and The New York Times revealed that the Obama Administration was continuing the Bush-era policy of including U.S. citizens on lists of people to be assassinated without a trial. Kucinich has spoken out forcefully against revoking the basic constitutional rights of American citizens for simply being suspected of involvement with terrorism, and he is currently recruiting cosponsors for his bill.

Kucinich ends his letter this way:

Intelligence operations that have virtually no transparency, accountability or oversight raise serious legal questions, particularly when the outcomes of such programs constitute possible violations of international law and violations of the Constitution of the United States.  Congress has the responsibility to protect the rights of all U.S. citizens.  We must reject the notion that protecting the constitutional rights of some citizens requires revoking the rights of other citizens.  My legislation would reaffirm our commitment to upholding our nation’s basic constitutional principles, and prohibit the extrajudicial killing of United States citizens abroad.



Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel is an American journalist whose reporting specializes in security and civil liberties.