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Friday, August 12, 2016

Trump,Gitmo, the Sixth Amendment, and Gabriel Over the White House

James Fallows writes at The Atlantic:
In an interview with the Miami Herald today, a man who could become the next president said that if it were up to him, U.S. citizens suspected of terrorist involvement could be sent to Guantanamo and handled by military tribunals, rather than tried in normal courts.
Here is what the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says on the topic:
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
Trump's notion is remarkably similar to a scene in the 1933 movie, Gabriel Over the White House.  In the film, a president receives instructions from God, takes dictatorial control, and uses courts-martial to try racketeers: