On Your World with Neil Cavuto, Ann Coulter commented on the Democratic reaction to the Supreme Court decision prohibiting the use of military commissions for the trial of detainees at Guantánamo Bay: "[Y]ou just expect Democrats to side with Al Qaeda." Coulter also stated that she couldn't "imagine that this country could have won World War II if this is the way one of the parties was behaving."
On the June 29 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, right-wing pundit Ann Coulter commented on the Democratic reaction to the Supreme Court decision issued that morning in which the court prohibited the use of military commissions for the trial of detainees at Guantánamo Bay: "[Y]ou just expect Democrats to side with Al Qaeda." Host Neil Cavuto remarked that upon hearing the decision, "the Democrats are lining up like jets on a runway, declaring this is proof that the president is bungling the war on terror," while showing a clip of a press event with two Democratic senators and one Republican senator: Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Arlen Specter (R-PA). Coulter asserted that she couldn't "imagine that this country could have won World War II if this is the way one of the parties was behaving. ... [T]he culture of treason right now ... has become so pervasive that you just expect the Democrats to side with Al Qaeda."
Despite admitting that she hadn't "read the decision yet," Coulter opined that during wartime, the "Constitution vests the entire commander-in-chief powers" in the president, removing any "checks and balances." Coulter continued: "[T]o have the Supreme Court second-guessing, rearranging military tribunals is about on the order of them coming in and disputing troop movements, and when and where a daisy cutter will be dropped." Coulter wondered "how the president can get around the decision, or whether he should simply ignore it," but declined to offer the president specific advice on how to do so because she didn't "know the details of the decision."
Responding to Cavuto's question about why the Supreme Court decision didn't affect the stock markets, Coulter replied that the Supreme Court ruling is "not going to help in the war on terrorism," adding that she doesn't "think that the market has incorporated it, but when there's another terrorist attack, the market will incorporate it."
Earlier on June 29, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that the Bush administration did not have the statutory or constitutional power to set up "military commissions" to try detainees held at Guantánamo Bay and that, as a New York Times article reported, the commissions "violated both American military law and the military's obligations under the Geneva Conventions." The case was brought by Salim Ahmed Hamdan, Osama bin Laden's former driver. The military commissions, as The Washington Post noted, afford the detainees with "fewer rights than they would get in federal courts or regular military courts."
From the June 29 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto:
CAVUTO: Meanwhile, Democratic lawmakers wasting no time using today's Supreme Court decision to gain some political points. They were lining up like jets on a runway, declaring this is proof that the president is bungling the war on terror. Reaction now from Ann Coulter and, of course, the author of Godless: The Church of Liberalism, the most widely read book in all of the USA. Ann, good to have you.
COULTER: Thank you, good to be here.
CAVUTO: Let me give you some reaction today from Senator Ted Kennedy. He was saying Ann, "This decision is a stunning repudiation of the Bush administration's lawless behavior at Guantánamo. As we approach the Fourth of July, it is entirely appropriate that the Supreme Court has reminded the president and [Defense] Secretary [Donald H.] Rumsfeld that there is no excuse for ignoring the rule of law, even when our country is at war." What do you think?
COULTER: I can't imagine that this country could have won World War II if this is the way one of the parties was behaving in those circumstances. And the way newspapers are behaving. I mean, the culture of treason right now, it just -- it has become so pervasive that you just expect Democrats to side with Al Qaeda.
I mean, this is an appeal, a habeas corpus appeal, from a member of Al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden's driver complaining about the procedures of his court martial or military tribunal. And, instantly, I mean, I haven't read the decision yet, I have a general idea what the case was about, but I haven't read the decision. Trent Lott hasn't read the decision, but instantly the Democratic senators are siding with the Al Qaeda petitioner.
CAVUTO: Do you think that this is going to put pressure on the president to shut this place down?
COULTER: From what I understand, and I haven't read the decision yet. It only came out today, and I've been kind of busy promoting a book.
CAVUTO: You have a book out?
COULTER: From what I understand, it has nothing to do with that, it has to do with the procedures of the military tribunals --
COULTER: -- so I suppose the president could say, "OK, no military tribunals, we'll just keep you there for life --
CAVUTO: I'm just wondering, Ann --
COULTER: -- hope you like that chicken l'orange."
CAVUTO: The events we had earlier with The New York Times and releasing the terror network financing and how we're trying to track it down, and then this decision today -- many have kind of coupled these events and said we're kind of ceding one to the bad guys. What do you think?
COULTER: Yes, I do think it's part of the culture of treason that the country had during the Vietnam War for the first time but did not have at all during World War II. Because I haven't read the decision, not speaking specifically of the decision but generally, the Constitution makes the president commander in chief. You do want for normal laws and lawmaking and for rules governing American citizens, you do want checks and balances, you want to slow the process down. You want more innocent, or rather, more guilty to go free than innocent to be imprisoned. You're constantly erring on the side of not putting people in prison, of releasing the guilty. In wartime, all of that is reversed. That's why the Constitution vests the entire commander-in-chief powers in one man, not in branches, not with checks and balances. For the commander-in-chief powers, one man has that because you have to act quickly and decisively in wartime, and to have the Supreme Court second-guessing, rearranging military tribunals is about on the order of them coming in and disputing troop movements, or when and where a daisy cutter will be dropped. This is part of the war, the military tribunals. I don't know the details of the decision, how the president can get around the decision, or whether he should simply ignore it, given that the Constitution makes him commander in chief, and not the Supreme Court commander in chief --
CAVUTO: But, let me ask you about that --
COULTER: But, this sounds like a pretty serious decision.
CAVUTO: OK. Let me ask you about that, Ann. Let's say it was as big a deal as you have claimed it is. And other Republican senators, by the way, were echoing your exact point today, as was the president. Now, I know the market was up for a host of reasons, including hope that maybe the Fed is done raising interest rates. If there was this fear that we just ceded the terror fight to the bad guys, would we have been up so much today?
COULTER: I think they're completely unconnected because, I must say, as testy as I am with the Supreme Court and The New York Times -- which I think should be looked at for a treason charge, by the way -- when I heard your introduction today hearing about the market, I must say, I was a little elated. So, if that's my reaction, no, I think the two were completely unconnected, and perhaps once it sinks in -- I mean, these -- revealing a classified program that has been used to catch terrorists, to follow them, to track them, to see where they're going, to give this sort of information to Al Qaeda isn't going to have an effect today, it's going to have an effect when there's a terrorist attack. It's going to have an effect on our troops when there are bombings going off. All of this requires money, and now it's going to be easier for terrorists to get their hands on money, to finance operations, thanks to The New York Times. How, depending on how the Bush administration reacts and what precisely the Supreme Court decision held today on military tribunals, that's not going to help the war on terrorism. So, no, I don't think the market will react to that today.
COULTER: I mean, senators, myself, we're all sort casting about, trying to figure out exactly what happened today. I don't think that the market has incorporated it, but when there's another terrorist attack the market will incorporate it.