Republican Liberty Caucus of California Endorses California A.B. 351

Republican Liberty Caucus of California Endorses California A.B. 351
Prohibiting the Indefinite Detention of Individuals in California
May 25, 2013
Contact: Eric Rall,


The Republican Liberty Caucus of California has endorsed A.B. 351, otherwise known as the Preservation of Liberty Act, which was introduced into the California State Assembly by Assemblyman Tim Donnelly of San Bernardino County. If passed, the bill will make it the policy of the State of California that any attempt by the federal government to indefinitely detain any individual is unconstitutional, and that no State or Local government aid shall be given to any such attempt within any California jurisdiction.


An indefinite detention attempt by the federal government could be made pursuant to an interpretation of Sections 1021 and 1022 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2012. The Administration has, at a previous time, erroneously asserted in federal court that the indefinite detention authority it purports to have derives from the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) enacted prior to the start of the Afghan War in response to the events of September 11, 2001. That assertion is now under challenge in the U.S. federal court system. A lawsuit has recently been brought against the Obama Administration by individuals that one federal court found to have a reasonable fear of being indefinitely detained under the provisions of the NDAA.


“The very idea of indefinite detention is unconstitutional under our system of government, whatever the purported legal justification,” says Lori Drake, the Vice Chairman of the RLCCA. “This concept, introduced into our political discourse as a means of ‘fighting terrorism,’ was imported from abroad and has no place in our political system. The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution acknowledges that all individuals have the right to due process, which is a cornerstone of our liberty. Our liberties come from our Creator. They are not ‘granted’ to us by the government, merely acknowledged. Therefore, they cannot be removed or erased by it, only trampled upon.”


We commend Assemblyman Donnelly for his courage, for standing up to and countering, through this legislation, the federal government’s attempt to trample on our liberty by asserting a right to indefinite detention on our soil. While we would have preferred that the Committee retained the actual invalidation clause, we still see this bill as a significant step toward the restoration of liberty in California and encourage our legislators in California, Republican and Democrat alike, to vote for its adoption.