Federal Judge Orders End to Warrantless Wiretapping

A federal judge in Detroit ruled today that the Bush administration’s eavesdropping program is illegal and unconstitutional. I’ll leave analysis of Judge Taylor’s reasoning to the experts (Jack Balkin, Orin Kerr, Dan Solove, Eugene Volokh, for starters). But I certainly agree with her quoting of Justice Warren at the conclusion of the opinion:

Implicit in the term “national defense” is the notion of defending those values and ideas which set this Nation apart. . . . It would indeed be ironic if, in the name of national defense, we would sanction the subversion of one of those liberties . . . which makes the defense of the Nation worthwhile. U.S. v. Robel, 389 U.S. 258 (1967)

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