The government’s day in court

On Wednesday, I previewed the oral argument in the Hamdan case, in which the government has appealed a district court ruling halting the military trial of a Guantanamo Bay detainee on the grounds that the proceeding is illegal. At stake, among other things, is whether the government can exclude suspected al Qaeda detainees from portions of their trial in which it presents classified information that would be helpful to al Qaeda. Here’s the AP Report on the oral argument carried by the Washington Times.
In a case like this, the composition of the appeals court panel is usually key (hence the judicial wars being waged in Congress). The government got lucky — John Roberts and A. Raymond Randolph were on the three-judge panel. Both would be on my short list for Supreme Court Justice. The AP report indicates that Hamdan’s lawyer faced some tough questioning.

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