The Cato Institute’s Doug Bandow offers perspective.
One of the more far-reaching federal rules targets people who provide “material support” for terrorists. In principle, it’s hard to disagree with such an approach: terrorism is bad, so no one should support terrorists.
However, what does “material support” mean? You can go to jail for 10 years if convicted, so it would be nice to know what is prohibited.
If the rest of us are vulnerable to extreme interpretations of the law, then lawmakers who approved the law should be subject to the same legal risks. Consider Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who has been campaigning for war in Syria, just as he previously promoted war most everywhere else around the globe.
During his recent visit to Syrian rebels, he would seem to have provided “material support” to terrorists.