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    This page contains bills sponsored by presidential contenders. Bill sponsorships indicate the topics that legislators are most interested in, and spend the most time on.

05-SP1556 on Jul 25, 2005

Legislation by 2008 Presidential Candidates: prohibiting torture of terrorists in US custody
Source: Defense Authorization Bill (S.AMDT.1556 to S.1042)
OnTheIssues.org Explanation: This amendment would ban waterboarding at Guantanamo prison. McCain specifies several international treaties which include bans on waterboarding; and cites "regardless of physical location" to include Guantanamo. McCain cites too that this ban is nothing new; but the US has, in fact, been using waterboarding at Guantanamo.

OFFICIAL CONGRESSIONAL SUMMARY: To prohibit cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment of persons under the custody or control of the United States Government.

SPONSOR'S INTRODUCTORY REMARKS: Sen. McCAIN: This amendment would prohibit cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of persons in the detention of the US Government. The amendment doesn't sound like anything new. That is because it isn't. The prohibition has been a longstanding principle in both law and policy in the United States. All of this seems to be common sense and in accordance with longstanding American values.

EXCERPTS OF BILL:

  • No individual in the custody or under the physical control of the United States Government, regardless of nationality or physical location, shall be subject to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.
  • The President may waive the prohibition, on a case-by-case basis, if the President determines that the waiver is required for a military or national security necessity; and submits to Congress timely notice of the exercise of the waiver.
  • This shall not be construed to impose any geographical limitation on the applicability of the prohibition against cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.
  • The term "cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment" means punishment prohibited by the Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the US Constitution, as defined in the UN Convention Against Torture, December 10, 1984.

    LEGISLATIVE OUTCOME:Proposed amendment withdrawn 11/4/2005.


      Participating counts on VoteMatch question 14. Question 14: Maintain US sovereignty from UN Scores: -2=Strongly oppose; -1=Oppose; 0=neutral; 1=Support; 2=Strongly support.
    • Topic: Homeland Security
    • Headline: Prohibit torture of terrorists in US custody (Score: -1)
    • Headline 2: Sponsored bill banning torture of terrorists in US custody (Score: -1)

    • Key for participation codes:
    • Sponsorships: p=sponsored; o=co-sponsored; s=signed
    • Memberships: c=chair; m=member; e=endorsed; f=profiled; s=scored
    • Resolutions: i=introduced; w=wrote; a=adopted
    • Cases: w=wrote; j=joined; d=dissented; c=concurred
    • Surveys: '+' supports; '-' opposes.



    Democrats participating in 05-SP1556



    Republicans participating in 05-SP1556

    Lamar Alexander s1oTN Republican Sr Senator 
    Lincoln Chafee s1oRI Former Republican Senator (Lost re-election, 2006) 
    Susan Collins s1oME Republican Sr Senator 
    Lindsey Graham s1oSC Republican Sr Senator 
    John McCain s2pAZ Republican Sr Senator 
    Gordon Harold Smith s1oOR Former Republican Senator (lost re-election, 2008) 
    Olympia Snowe s1oME Republican Sr Senator 
    John Warner s1oVA Former Republican Senator (retired 2008) 



    Independents participating in 05-SP1556



    Total recorded by OnTheIssues:

    Democrats: 0
    Republicans: 8
    Independents: 0


















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