WASHINGTON – Senator Scott Brown tomorrow is signing on to legislation that would strip naturalized Americans of their citizenship if they are found to have aided a foreign terrorist organization.
Brown is joining three other lawmakers in filing the legislation, which comes after Faisal Shehzad was accused of a plot to detonate a car bomb in Times Square on Saturday. Because the Pakistani-born Shehzad is a naturalized American citizen, he was read his Miranda rights and will be tried in a civilian court, rather than before a military tribunal.
The legislation is likely to trigger debate over what rights American citizens should be afforded if they are involved in acts of terrorism. Senator John McCain has called it a mistake to have read Shehzad his Miranda rights, while Fox News commentator Glenn Beck said, "He has all the rights under the Constitution. We don’t shred the Constitution when it’s popular.”
The others sponsoring the bill are Senator Joseph Lieberman, a Connecticut Independent; Representative Jason Altmire, a Democrat of Pennsylvania; and Representative Charlie Dent, a Republican of Pennsylvania.
The four will hold a press conference tomorrow to announce the legislation, called the Terrorist Expatriation Act.
Matt Viser can be reached at email@example.com.
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Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.