POLITICS
02/03/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Obama Faces Early Test Over View On Detainees

Just a month after President-elect Barack Obama takes office, he must tell the Supreme Court where he stands on one of the most aggressive legal claims made by the Bush administration -- that the president may order the military to seize legal residents of the United States and hold them indefinitely without charging them with a crime.

The new administration's brief, which is due Feb. 20, has the potential to hearten or infuriate Mr. Obama's supporters, many of whom are looking to him for stark disavowals of the Bush administration's legal positions on the detention and interrogation of so-called enemy combatants held at Navy facilities on the American mainland or at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

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