Joe Lieberman’s Terrorist Expatriation Act is designed to strip the constitutional rights from any American who is accused of supporting terrorism, but the political sentiment he’s tapping into is simply, America first. Does Lieberman have no concern about where this might go?
How about this New Yorker who Max Blumenthal interviewed recently? Presumably she’s an American citizen, but it sounds like she puts Israel first:
Several major Democratic officials spoke positively about the proposal, including Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Noting that the State Department already had the authority to rescind the citizenship of people who declare allegiance to a foreign state, she said the administration would take “a hard look” at extending those powers to cover terrorism suspects.
“United States citizenship is a privilege,” she said. “It is not a right. People who are serving foreign powers — or in this case, foreign terrorists — are clearly in violation, in my personal opinion, of that oath which they swore when they became citizens.”
Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she supported the “spirit” of the measure, although she urged caution and said that the details of the proposal, like what would trigger a loss of citizenship, still needed to be fleshed out.
Interesting comment from Clinton… Makes me wonder: how does she feel about Rahm Emanuel serving in the Israeli Defense Force? I know that doesn’t count as an infraction of the law because Israel is not a country hostile to the US, but there’s no avoiding the fact that serving in the Israeli military is serving a foreign power.
As for the “spirit” of the measure, I guess Pelosi will have to explain what she means, but Megan McArdle is not alone in finding this spirit hard to discern:
Can someone explain to me–hopefully using graphs, and small words–why Joe Lieberman is willing to share the precious blessing of American citizenship with Charles Manson, Gary Ridgeway, and David Berkowitz, but wants citizenship stripped from a guy who strapped some firecrackers to a bag of non-explosive fertilizer?