As legislators await word on whether Gov. Bob McDonnell will sign, amend or veto their bills
before his Monday deadline, Del. Bob Marshall is leaving nothing to chance.
Marshall (R-PrinceWilliam), who is running for U.S. Senate, sent McDonnell (R) an 11-page memo analyzing legal aspects of his bill that would ban state employees — including the Virginia National Guard and State Police — from assisting in the federal detention of U.S. citizens without criminal charges or court hearings.
The legislation is based on the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which Marshall say allows the indefinite government detention of citizens in some cases.
Marshall’s memo was prepared by attorney Herbert W. Titus, a former law school professor who works with the Vienna law firm of William J. Olson, former chairman of the Fairfax County Republican Party.
The document notes, among other thing, that “a potential additional complication” is that McDonnell, by Obama appointment, serves on a
bipartisan Council of Governors, which assists federal authorities “on matters related to the National Guard and civil support missions.”
“Since the governor’s oath includes upholding the Constitutions of both the United States and the Commonwealth and since both documents secure to the people the rights to a speedy and public trial, confrontation of witnesses, jury trial, and due process of law, it seems reasonable to expect that the governor will sign H.B. 1160,’’ Titus wrote. “In so doing, he would fulfill the historic role of the States as being guardians of the people from usurpations of authority from the central government.”
Last month, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R- Ky.) urged McDonnell to sign the bill, but the governor has expressed some reservations.
A spokesman for McDonnell said Thursday that the governor was “currently reviewing this legislation.”