California Senate Committee Unanimously Passes Anti-NDAA Bill; Flaws Remain

By:  Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.
California Senate Committee Unanimously Passes Anti-NDAA Bill; Flaws Remain

The Public Safety Committee of the California State Senate unanimously passed a bill that would partially prevent participation by state officials in the indefinite detention of Californians.

A California state Senate committee recently passed a bill that purports to prevent the federal government from enforcing key provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2011 and 2012.

On June 25, the California State Senate Public Safety Committee unanimously (7-0) approved AB 351, the California Liberty Preservation Act. Although it passed the bill, the committee did add a requirement that the measure be re-submitted to the Appropriations Committee. That re-hearing is scheduled for August 12.

The bill’s primary sponsor is current gubernatorial candidate Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (R-33rd District). Donnelly’s bill specifically guarantees the right of citizens of California to be free from any federal law, including the NDAA, that would authorize their indefinite detention in violation of habeas corpus.

Known as the California Liberty Preservation Act, AB 351 is backed by a politically diverse coalition, including Taxpayers for Improving Public Safety; the Bill of Rights Defense Committee; the Tenth Amendment Center; the California American Civil Liberties Union; San Francisco Board of Supervisors President, David Chiu; The Libertarian Party of California; and the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors.

Specifically, if enacted, the bill would shield from federal assault several fundamental constitutionally guaranteed civil liberties, “including the right of habeas corpus, the right to due process, the right to a speedy and public trial, and the right to be informed of criminal charges brought against him or her.”

Relying on the 10th Amendment’s reservation to the states and the people all powers not specifically delegated to the federal government in the Constitution, the bill is a constitutionally sound expression of state sovereignty.

In a press release issued by his office after the committee approved his bill, Assemblyman Donnelly recognizes his duty to resist attempts by Washington, D.C., to deny Americans of their most basic freedoms.

“The NDAA gives the executive branch — under not only President Obama, but also every future president — unprecedented power to detain US citizens without due process. This runs counter to the very principles that make America great, and violates our nation’s commitment to the rule of law,” said Assemblyman Donnelly.

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Photo: California capitol dome

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