The Virginia Senate has passed a law that forbids authorities in the state from using the 'indefinite detention' provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act against Americans, but whether or not Governor Bob McDonnell will sign it remains to be seen given the fact that he is a member of Barack Obama's infamous 'Council of Governors,' whose role it is to increase military involvement in domestic affairs.
"Today, the Virginia State Senate nearly unanimously passed my bill, HB 1160, to prevent Virginia's state and local government agencies from cooperating with the federal government in the indefinite detention of Virginians under the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 ("NDAA"). I am grateful that the vote in the Senate to accede to the bill as passed by the House of Delegates was 37-1," said a statement by Delegate Bob Marshall, who was the driving force behind the bill.
"Congress, by including this provision in a must pass bill affecting our Armed Forces, made a terrible mistake in empowering this or any future President and the military to arrest and detain American citizens indefinitely, without charges, without the chance to confront their accusers, without legal counsel, and without a trial."
Having already passed the Virginia House by a vote of 96-4 last month, the final bill will be sent to Governor Bob McDonnell. However, McDonnell has already attempted to sabotage the legislation using "secretive, backdoor" tactics, according to Marshall, so whether he agrees to sign the bill without trying to weaken its language remains to be seen.
The fact that McDonnell was included on President Obama's infamous 'Council of Governors' probably explains why he has been so reticent to support the bill.
The executive order which established the Council of Governors (PDF), created a body of ten state governors directly appointed by Obama to work with the federal government to help advance the "synchronization and integration of State and Federal military activities in the United States."
In other words, McDonnell is a key figure in the effort to expand military involvement in domestic security, which explains why he is opposed to a bill that strips the military of the power to arrest and indefinitely detain Americans at the behest of the federal government.
As Joe Wolverton explains, McDonnell has proved to be a roadblock at every stage of Delegate Marshall's efforts to pass the anti-NDAA bill.
Virginia is just one of numerous states which are fighting back against the indefinite detention provisions of the NDAA. According to the Tenth Amendment Center, which has been tracking the nationwide revolt against the NDAA, a total of nine states have now introduced resolutions or bills in opposition to the indefinite detention of American citizens.
Last week President Obama issued a 'Presidential Policy Directive' that forbids the indefinite detention provisions from being used against US citizens.
However, as we documented at the time, it was the administration itself that lobbied for the 'kidnapping provisions' to be included in the NDAA in the first place.
Obama's policy directive has done nothing to calm fears that the law could be used to incarcerate Americans under a future administration, which could be in power in as little as ten months.