It was a blind quote hitting the civil-libertarian solar plexus. Bad enough that, as ProPublica’s Dafna Linzner and The Washington Post’s Peter Finn reported
late on Friday afternoon, the Obama administration was readying an executive order that would establish a system of preventive detention in terrorism cases. President Obama himself had indicated in a May speech at the National Archives that he wanted to seek legislation toward the same idea.
But now an administration official had told reporters that those same opponents of preventive detention had given the president cover to pursue it: “Civil liberties groups have encouraged the administration, that if a prolonged detention system were to be sought, to do it through executive order.”