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Bench Memos

NRO’s home for judicial news and analysis.

The Post’s Editors Get It--Sort Of



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It’s a pretty good day when an editorial in the Washington Post is as much as half right–and so today is a pretty good day. In its editorial “The 4th Circuit v. Mr. Bush,” the editors register their predictable opposition to the argument the Bush administration has made for the executive’s power to detain unlawful enemy combatants like Jose Padilla in military custody. But to their credit, they also see, as I did before Christmas, that there is something unseemly in the Fourth Circuit’s recent ruling denying the government’s requested transfer of Padilla out of military custody, which they characterize as a “case in which the executive branch has been forced by the judiciary to detain someone against its will.” They go on to say that “the Bush administration is rightly balking” at Judge Luttig’s insouciance about the rights of Mr. Padilla, when the administration now wishes to exercise its constitutional discretion to transfer him to the milder precincts of the civilian criminal justice system.



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