By a vote of 43-7, the Montana state senate voted on Tuesday in favor of a bill against the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). HB 522 “prohibit[s] the state from providing material support for” and cooperation with federal officials who attempt to implement indefinite detention on Montanan soil. The bill previously passed committees in the House and Senate unanimously and passed the statehouse 98-0. HB 522 now heads to Governor Steve Bullock. Since more than two-thirds of the statehouse and senate have already voted in favor of restoring due process, there may be enough votes to override a veto. First introduced by freshman representative Nicholas Schwaderer, a 24-year-old Republican, HB 522 has been backed by groups all across the political spectrum, including BORDC, the ACLU, and the Tenth Amendment Center. In fact, grassroots pressure even helped convince six senators to change their votes, since on the second reading of the bill, 13 senators had voted against HB 522. The fact that a mere seven Montanan lawmakers did not vote in favor of defending civil liberties is a welcome contrast to the U.S. Senate, where only 13 senators voted against enacting the NDAA in 2011. Montana’s vote is just the latest in a growing nationwide movement against indefinite detention. Anti-NDAA legislation has been approved by Hawaii and Virginia, as well as the state senates in Michigan, Indiana, and South Carolina and the statehouses of Arizona and New Hampshire. Meanwhile, another dozen states are still considering bills to oppose the NDAA. In addition, almost two dozen local jurisdictions have enacted resolutions and legislation to restore due process, including cities like San Francisco and Las Vegas. Governor Bullock can be contacted here.
/ / Montana Senate Passes anti-NDAA bill 43-7, heads to Governor with veto-proof majority