Calif. Condemns “Indefinite Detention”

Statewide policy makes it illegal to enforce indefinite detention

Julie Wilson
Oct. 2, 2013

Calif. achieved a tremendous victory yesterday when a coalition of grassroots’ efforts managed to persuade Gov. Jerry Brown to sign into law the “California Liberty Preservation Act,” also known as AB-351 and “Habeas Corpus.”

Photo: Dave 77459 via Flickr

AB-351, which was first introduced by Assemblyman Tim Donnelly in Feb., rejects the unconstitutional National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), also known as “indefinite detention,” declaring the federal law null and void throughout the state. It also bans all cooperation with the NDAA and any other attempts by the feds to indefinitely detain Calif. citizens.

In 2012, Obama signed the NDAA which included a provision allowing “indefinite detention of American citizens without due process at the discretion of the President.”

Infowars reported in Sept. of that same year, US District Court Judge Katherine B. Forrest ruled the “indefinite detention” provision unconstitutional and permanently blocked it.

However, within just 24 hours the Obama administration appealed the judge’s ruling. The Second Circuit Court overturned the temporary injunction, making it once again “legal” for Americans to be kidnapped off the street and held without charges or a trial.

With indefinite detention being such a blatant violation of American’s civil liberties, outraged soared among states, prompting them to consider enacting legislation that would protect its citizens from the illegal federal law.

Calif. is one of two states that has actually passed legislation prohibiting state officials from cooperating with the NDAA. The bill also bans “every other federal law present or future that might be used for open-ended detentions, according to

Virginia passed similar legislation in April when the House voted 89-7 last year, preventing state officers and agents from participating in the indefinite detention of its citizens.

Alaska also tried to enact protective legislation in July when it signed into law HB69. HB69 was meant to “‘nullify’ the detention provisions of the NDAA,” however critics argue the bill fails to protect the inalienable rights of people because it doesn’t prohibit federal agents from using the powers in the NDAA detention provision.

The Calif. bill, or AB-351, started out as merely a grassroots effort supported by groups like the CA Libertarian Party, Bill of Rights Defense Committee, CA Republican Liberty Caucus, ACLU, and Oath Keepers, just to name a few.

The movement had literally zero support from the Calif. legislature until members of the above organizations showed up in court to testify at the bill’s first hearing.

According to the Tenth Amendment Center, Chairman Tom Ammiano, who is considered to be the most progressive Democratic CA Assemblyman, told initiator Donnelly, who is highly conservative (arguably the most conservative Rep. in the state), that “you have found a zone we are all in.”

The bill passed unanimously in the committee, and also on the State Senate floor.

It’s refreshing to see Californians unifying to endorse this bill, much like they did for Prop 37, a movement to require labeling of genetically-engineered organisms, which gained enormous amounts of support and brought awareness to millions of people despite its failure.

Hopefully we will see more states move to protect its citizens in the way Calif. has.