The big question

Glenn Greenwald has another excellent column at Salon.com on the imperial presidency. Where is the outcry from so-called conservatives over President Obama’s claim of authority to order the assassination of American citizens without oversight of any kind?

That’s right. This administration has a secret hit list of “dozens” of American citizens considered a threat. Aside from Keith Olbermann, of all people, and a couple of passing mentions in The Washington Post and the New York Times, this is a story that’s gone MIA from the major media.

Here’s the big question from Greenwald for Obama supporters:

[I]f you’re someone who believes, or are at least willing to acquiesce to the claim, that the U.S. President has the power to target your fellow citizens for assassination without a whiff of due process, what unchecked presidential powers wouldn’t you support or acquiesce to? I’d really like to hear an answer to that. That’s the question Al Gore asked about George Bush in a 2006 speech condemning Bush’s claimed powers merely to eavesdrop on and imprison American citizens without charges, let alone assassinate them: “If the answer is yes, then under the theory by which these acts are committed, are there any acts that can on their face be prohibited? . . . If the president has th[is] inherent authority. . . . then what can’t he do?”

Can anyone defending this Obama policy answer that question?

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