Liberadio(!): The Key Votes – Habeas Corpus Edition

S-Town Mike picked up on a nice new initiative under way from Chris Dodd, who, in case you didn’t know, is running for president. This got me to wondering: Just how well did the Senatorial candidates for president perform on this particular test? You know, the one involving habeas corpus, the little thing that, prior to the passage of this bill, allowed all Americans to protest unlawful imprisonment? I was especially curious about the vote of Barack Obama, and I would’ve bet money that Hillary Clinton had voted for the Military Commissions Act. Turns out I was pleasantly surprised on both counts. Project Vote Smart has the complete list. For your primary pleasure, here are the votes of the members of the Senate currently pursuing presidential bids:


  • Joe Biden: N
  • Chris Dodd: N
  • Hillary Clinton: N
  • Barack Obama: N


  • John McCain: Y
  • Sam Brownback: Y

I can understand McCain’s hawkishness, which has been a fairly consistent position of his, but this particular bill is possibly the biggest assault on basic civil liberties of the entire Bush administration. And Sam Brownback has since turned his back on this war. For shame! Perhaps it’s this vote, actually, that served as the watershed moment for Democrats finding their spine in opposing the Bush administration and the Republican Congress in general. It’s actually sad how clearly this vote appears partisan based on our presidential candidates from this august body.

Kudos to Project Vote Smart, which truly does help us all, regardless of partisan affiliation, vote smarter.

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