David Addington

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Mr. Addington Gets Called Out

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:10pm
When the historians get their mitts on the Bush presidency, the one essential book that probably will never be written is a biography of David Addington, Vice President Cheney's former top lawyer and current chief of staff (the replacement, of course, for Scooter). Of all of the executive supremacy guys, Mr. Addington is the most prodigious, the most zealous, and the most unsung. By all accounts, his efforts to aggrandize power for the executive at the expense of the courts and the Congress have been more intense and more offensive than even those of John Yoo, Mr. Addington's mole, if you will, in the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel (the internal legal "think tank" at the DOJ). (And let us not forget President Bush and ex-Attorney General Gonzales who enabled Mr. Addington's walk on the wild side of civil liberties erosion.) And when that book never gets written, someone needs to devote an entire chapter to the ideological friction between Addington and Jack Goldsmith, Harvard Law professor, conservative academic luminary, former head of the OLC and a political ally of James Comey. Though this is not new news, Goldsmith's new book is a must read for anyone studying the ideological interplay over civil liberties and the separation of powers among conservative lawyers in the early Bush administration. Goldsmith writes:

Mr. Panetta: Call Off the Wrecking Ball

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 12:43pm

Last week, the CIA announced it would shutter its overseas black sites, where many current Guantánamo detainees, including the former CIA detainees profiled in the Red Cross report declassified last week, were held — and tortured —…

Next Week on the Hill, June 23 – June 27, 2008

By Rachel Perrone, ACLU at 10:21am

Since you read the ACLU blog, you likely already know that the House of Representatives voted to pass the sham FISA “compromise” bill on Friday, and the Senate’s slated to take it up this week, with a vote expected Tuesday or Wednesday.…

Accountability Is Coming to the USA

By Philippe Sands at 11:23am

The world is watching as America attempts to come to terms with the abuse it unleashed in the aftermath of 9/11, and trying to assess whether there will be any sort of accountability for the perpetrators of the abuse. With a wide-ranging Spanish…

"Torturing Democracy" Connects the Dots

By Jenny Egan at 11:45am

I'm not saying that obsessively watching episodes of Mad Men is a waste of your intellectual powers, but there are a few things on TV worth watching besides Joan Holloway and Torturing Democracy is one of them.

The documentary traces the evolution…

The Unitary Executive…Is…What Again?

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 4:27pm

One aspect of the Bush administration that's been especially pernicious is its — or shall we say Dick Cheney and David Addington's — belief in the unitary executive. Remember in June when Addington was testifying before the House Judiciary…

Dick Cheney Wants to Confuse You

By Jenny Egan at 2:12pm

In the course of the NSA spying saga that has unfolded over the past three years, the Bush administration has benefited from the tangling of plain language and the byzantine inner-workings of Executive branch bureaucracy to shield it from public…

Ashcroft Defends Constitution in Spying Clusterfrack. Happy Opposite Day!

By Amanda Simon at 5:52pm

Barton Gellman at The Washington Post has a book about Vice President Dick Cheney called Angler coming out tomorrow. In anticipation of that release, the Post has printed back to back excerpts. I’m fired UP. If you haven’t had a chance…

Conyers Subpoenas Addington for Torture Testimony

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 5:40pm
This afternoon, Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), faxed a subpoena to David Addington, Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff and counsel to Vice President Dick Cheney: Dear Mr. Addington: As discussed with Counsel to the Vice President Kathryn Wheelbarger,…

Clients vs. Acolytes

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:00pm
Rosa Brooks, law professor and LA Times columnist, nails it once again, ridiculing the media's incredulity at the recent Libby commutation, the Cheney power-grab reported in the Post and the rest of the "oh, wow" newfound fright at the Bush administration's…
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