Thursday, October 13, 2005

Mary Beth Harrell Calls Out John Carter On Torture

We have a great candidate for Congress for 2006 in Mary Beth Harrell and today she has started right where she needs to by drawing a stark contrast between herself and our current representative.

(KILLEEN) Congressional candidate Mary Beth Harrell today called on her opponent John Carter to take a stand against torture by proclaiming his public support of a legislative initiative that would ban "cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment" of prisoners in the custody of the U.S. military.

Harrell, the wife of a retired military officer and mother of two active-duty soldiers in the war on terrorism, said Carter should immediately assure voters in Congressional District 31 that he supports the defense authorization bill with the torture ban amendment.

"Looking for a legal loophole that would allow prisoners in U.S. custody to be subjected to torture and abuse is un-American and unacceptable," Harrell said. "Since when should we sink to the despicable standards of Al Qaeda?"

Harrell said an amendment by former prisoner-of-war Sen. John McCain to the pending defense authorization bill is threatened by Carter and other radicals in the House of Representatives. The measure, which passed the Senate last week by the overwhelming bipartisan vote of 90 to 9, is being jeopardized in the U.S. House by a group of radicals loyal to indicted former Majority Leader Tom DeLay. Carter is one of DeLay's chief defenders and has contributed thousands of dollars to his legal defense fund.

"We need to protect our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan," Harrell said, whose own son is scheduled to be deployed to Iraq at the end of the year. "Making sure this bill doesn't get derailed by a radical group of ultra-partisans is a top priority."

Harrell said Carter's opposition to the McCain amendment raises serious questions about whether he shares the mainstream values of Central Texans.

"Now more than ever, we need leaders who see America as a beacon of hope, justice, and moral values," Harrell said. "We must have a dedicated purpose and a carefully considered plan that implements and carries out that hope without exploiting fear at home or exporting it abroad. Condoning torture isn't a part of that vision. It is morally reprehensible and tactically ineffective."

A successful attorney specializing in criminal law, Harrell said her get-tough record in the courtroom and additional work on behalf of taxpayers as a city prosecutor in Nolanville and interim prosecutor in Temple reflect the mainstream values of Central Texas families and small businesses.

In addition to her legal work, Harrell operates the non-profit St. Francis Animal Sanctuary with her husband, a reserve police officer and Vice-Chair of the Bell County Bail Bond Board. The Harrells recently opened a second shelter, Assisi Animal Refuge, and continue to work in cooperation with the Killeen Chamber of Commerce on a wide range of humane education programs in the area.


At 10/13/2005 10:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is great to see, a moderate democrat willing to stand up for her district against the extremism of a delay lieutenant.


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