The Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that President Bush cannot try prisoners at Guantanamo Bay using the military justice tribunal system.
The four liberal justices, plus Justice Kennedy, said the president has overstepped his authority and must get congressional approval for military tribunals. The rulings contain much bloviating and mumbo-jumbo. It's what those people do. But bottom line: the liberal Supremes believe President Bush is commanding too much power. The three conservative judges say the president is within his authority.
Chief Justice John Roberts recused himself, but it wouldn't have mattered.
So what does this mean to you? Well, the president could seek congressional approval to use military tribunals and I hope he does. But either way, Gitmo stays open. The court says the detainees can pretty much be held there indefinitely.
The disturbing thing about today's Supreme Court ruling is that it demonstrates how America is divided on the terror war. As "Talking Points" has stated, the left believes the current administration is the enemy and doesn't trust it to wage a legal war. The right believes the Bush administration's policies have prevented attacks on American soil and is willing to give the president the benefit of the doubt.
So the battle lines at home are drawn.
Now the folks seem to be behind the Bush administration. All the polls say most Americans trust the president more than any Democrat to protect them from terror.
Finally, today's ruling is a political one, but not a disaster. If Mr. Bush wants military justice at Gitmo, the Republican controlled House and Senate would most likely OK it. All he has to do is ask.
And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel misquoted Congressman John Murtha in remarks about who is dangerous to the world. The newspaper has apologized, and since we picked up the paper's quote we should apologize, as well.
We did source the Sun-Sentinel, but I should have checked it out myself and called Murtha's office. Sorry we didn't do that.
On the same subject, there was a very amusing anti-O'Reilly column printed in a Perth, Australian, newspaper. Writer Michelle Phillips says, "I've lost count of the number of times I've heard O'Reilly tell one of his non-Republican guests to shut up."
Well, let me enlighten you, madam. In the past 10 years "The Factor" has been on the air, I've commanded someone to shut up five times. And they all deserved it. That's once every two years. It's not real hard to count that high.
By the way, the left-wing New York Times columnist, David Carr, also that saying "shut up" is my signature, some dumb thing. We expect that from Mr. Carr, who's probably on his eighth viewing of "Outfoxed."
Might be ridiculous.