Merkley Statement On National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, DC – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after voting against the FY2012 National Defense Authorization Act: 

“The most bedrock principle of our government, one that our nation was founded on, is that it protects the freedom and liberty of our citizens.  On this critical measure, the Defense Authorization bill falls short.  Instead, it allows the government to circumvent a host of our citizens’ constitutional rights ranging from due process to public and speedy trials. 

“This step takes us in a very dangerous direction and undermines the freedoms enshrined in our founding documents.  While I support much of the Defense Authorization bill and the programs that support our troops and our security, I cannot support a bill that strikes at the heart of our constitutional protections.”