Thursday, June 11, 2009

Today's House hearing on H.R. 569

The House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Courts and Competition Policy held a hearing today on H.R. 569, the Equal Justice for Our Military Act. The witnesses were the bill's sponsor, Rep. Susan Davis (D-Cal. 53), Major General John D. Altenburg, Jr., USA (Ret.), and me. The hearing lasted about an hour and featured statements and questions by Chairman Hank Johnson (D-Ga. 4), Ranking Member (and former Coast Guardsman) Howard Coble (R-N.C. 6), and Rep. (and former Air National Guardsman) Charlie Gonzalez (D-Tex. 20). I found the hearing to be an extremely thoughtful (and, I hope, valuable) exchange of ideas.

I'll try to post some additional thoughts about the hearing tonight. But for the moment, I want to provide links to the three witnesses' written testimony, which doesn't appear to be available yet through the House Judiciary Committee's web site. Here is Congresswoman Davis's written testimony. Here is General Altenburg's testimony. And here's mine.

1 comment:

Bridget said...

Not clear the source of MG Altenburg's concerns. Indeed servicemembers do get some things civilians do not in military justice matters. Not sure that matters.

What I find interesting is the former JAG Army and apparently the SCOTUS minority in Denedo so enthusiastic about collateral review by the civilian courts. The next time I end up in Fed Court with a judge who wants to dismiss my petition I will make certain to cite the MG and SCOTUS about that extensive power the court has in collateral review of CM convictions.