Holder looks to support civil liberties

Photo of Eric Holder Jr., Obama’s choice for AG and an assistant AG under Clinton, web page of the Homeland Security Institute.

No matter your critique, Holder looks like a refreshing change from Mukasey and Gonzalez before him. While Gonzalez was lining up taxpayer underwriting for his defense in the AG firing trial, Holder has been addressing (video) the The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS) National Convention attendees Friday evening, saying the US must reverse “the disastrous course” set by the Bush administration and

  • close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay
  • declare without qualification that the U.S. does not torture people
  • end extaordinary renditions and
  • stop warrantless domestic surveillance.

He said,

Our needlessly abusive and unlawful practices in the ‘War on Terror’ have diminished our standing in the world community and made us less, rather than more, safe…For the sake of our safety and security, and because it is the right thing to do, the next president must move immediately to reclaim America’s standing in the world as a nation that cherishes and protects individual freedom and basic human rights.

ACS, founded in 2001, defines itself as

a network of lawyers, law students, scholars, judges, policymakers and other concerned individuals. Our mission is to ensure that fundamental principles of human dignity, individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, and access to justice enjoy their rightful, central place in American law.

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