Posse Comitatus Act


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Posse Comitatus Act,

1878, U.S. federal law that makes it a crime to use the military as a domestic police force in the United States under most circumstances. The law was designed to end the use of federal troops to supervise elections in the post–Civil War South. The posse comitatus (from which the term posse derives) is the power or force of the county, and refers to citizens above the age of 15, who may be summoned by a sheriff to enforce the law. The act specifically prohibited the use of the U.S. army as a posse comitatus; the prohibition was later extended by legislation to the air force and by government directive to the marine corps and navy. The restriction does not apply to the coast guard during peacetime or the national guard when it is under state authority. There are legal exceptions to the law, particularly in aspects of drug law enforcement, in emergency situations, and in cases of rebellion.
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34) Finally, the assistance provided under the IRA, and the Stafford Act in general, must be consistent with the Posse Comitatus Act.
Since the Posse Comitatus Act only prohibits the use of federal military personnel in a law enforcement activity, the statute's prohibitions do not apply to members of the National Guard when in Title 32 status (primarily state active duty).
The Posse Comitatus Act and numerous other laws protect the states from intervention by government troops.
The Posse Comitatus Act sought explicitly to constrain the federal government's domestic use of its military power.
What the Posse Comitatus Act does is prohibit local authorities from conscripting members of the military into their posse.
Coast Guard, which now operates under the Department of Homeland Security, is also not covered by the Posse Comitatus Act, primarily because the Coast Guard has both a maritime law enforcement mission and a federal regulatory agency mission.
The Posse Comitatus Act prohibits the US military from operating on American soil, and there's no evidence that drones have violated it so far.
Perhaps the most controversial and ill-understood federal law regulating domestic military operations is the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 (PCA).
For example, the Posse Comitatus Act limits what the executive can have the military do.
And military personnel are further constrained by the Posse Comitatus Act, (2) which prohibits federal troops from actively enforcing the law on American soil.
Questions have been raised about the legality of a military unit responding within the United States to a civilian incident because of the Posse Comitatus Act, which limits the participation of the military in domestic law enforcement.
Addison said he was against amnesty for undocumented immigrants, and he proposed amending the Posse Comitatus Act to allow the military to detain illegal immigrants within a mile of the border.