Posted on May 20, 2010 in Viewpoint with James Zogby
Laura Murphy, Director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Washington Legislative Office, discussed immigration and the current attack on civil liberties as a result of recent activity threatening national security. Murphy commented on Arizona’s immigration law, the recent debate surrounding parameters of Miranda Rights, and Senator Lieberman’s proposal to pass a law which would strip citizenship from suspected terrorists. Murphy also briefly addressed the use of drone attacks in the assassination of human targets including US citizens. “We [the ACLU] are outraged”, said Murphy. “I think this [the use of drones] is lawlessness on the part of our government.”
Celinda Lake, Political Strategist and President of Lake Research Partners, gave an analysis of Tuesday’s primary elections in Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Kentucky and Oregon. Lake discussed the primary election results and their implications for Republicans and Democrats come November. Lake stated that the election results are a clear indication of: “How strong the anti-incumbent sentiment is.”
Farhana Khera, Executive Director of Muslim Advocates and the National Association of Muslim Lawyers (NAML), discussed the status of her organization’s meetings with high-level officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). “We’ve tried to get them (DHS) to be transparent”, said Khera. Khera stated that there is still information the DHS still refuses to publicly disclose. “We as Americans have a right to know how our government is using it’s power.” She did, however, iterate the meetings are a step in the right direction.
Abdullah Abdullah, former Afghanistan Foreign Minister and political opposition leader to current Afghan President Hamid Karzai, discussed his presidential campaign. Abdullah ran as an independent candidate for the presidency in Afghanistan. The election outcome, in which Karzai emerged victorious, was a contested one, and allegations of fraud were raised.