Recent Press Releases

Senate Passes Military Commissions Act

Legislation Creates System for Prosecuting Suspected Terrorists

September 28, 2006

Washington, DC —  Senator John Thune today voted in favor of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, which passed the Senate by a vote of 65 to 34. The Military Commissions Act would create a fair and constitutionally sound framework for trying suspected terrorists. Furthermore, the bill would protect both our nation's intelligence personnel operating in the field and sources and methods used to fight the War on Terror.

"Through the efforts of our intelligence community and the skill of our men and women in uniform, hundreds of terrorists have been captured since September 11, 2001. Recently, 14 of the world's most evil men, including the suspected mastermind behind September 11th, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, were transferred to Guantanamo Bay to await trial by military tribunal," Thune said. "While we had a system in place to try detainees, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that Congress needed to provide express authority to the President to try detainees by military tribunal. The legislation we have passed today meets that requirement.

"The Military Commissions Act establishes a process for prosecuting terrorists that strikes the important balance of protecting the way in which our country gathers sensitive intelligence, while providing detainees with basic legal protections. With the passage of the Military Commissions Act, we can finally move forward with bringing suspected terrorists to justice and peace of mind to the families of the fallen."

Provisions of the Military Commissions Act of 2006:
  • Provides clarity and direction for fighting the War on Terror to our men and women in the military and our personnel in the intelligence community.

  • Establishes a constitutional framework for trying detainees and bringing our military commission process in compliance with the Supreme Court ruling in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld.
  • Protects our sources and methods for collecting intelligence while providing for a fair system of prosecuting detainees.