The following Republican members of the House of Representatives voted against the Torture-”Terrorist” Tribunal bill (HR 6166) today.

Ron Paul, Roscoe Bartlett, Wayne Gilchrest, Walter Jones, Steven LaTourette, James Leach, Jerry Moran. ~James Bovard, Antiwar Blog

Good for these men.  Leach and Paul have distinguished themselves as being opponents of this bill and the war, and Jones later came around to seeing the war as a mistake, but I was genuinely surprised to not find Hostettler’s and Duncan’s names on this list of dissenters.  Now someone please remind me which party is the defender of “traditional American values.”  Somehow I keep getting distracted by all of these endorsements of torture and extralegal tribunals.

Here is a key element of the Militiary Commissions Act of 2006:

No alien unlawful enemy combatant subject to trial by military commission under this chapter may invoke the Geneva Conventions as a source of rights. 

In other words, the government denies these prisoners the protections of international conventions our government has ratified because it pleases them to do so.

Update: This is a description of some of the main provisions of the bill from The Chicago Tribune:

But other human-rights lawyers are less sanguine. “This bill doesn’t say what techniques are prohibited,” said Jumana Musa, an advocacy director of Amnesty International. “That is the problem with a system that has no check and an administration with a long and colorful record of broad interpretations of the law.”

The measure would define under the War Crimes Act “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions, such as torture, cruel or inhuman treatment and the intentional infliction of “serious bodily injury.”

It also gives the president authority to interpret the Geneva Conventions by an executive order made public and subject to congressional review. The order will not list specific techniques, and no one knows for sure what exactly the order will say.

The bill shields U.S. officials from prosecution under the War Crimes Act retroactively to 1997, when the original law was passed criminalizing violations of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions.

In short, another capitulation to executive usurpation and abuse–for the sake of freedom, no doubt.