The Privileged Executive

July 9th, 2007at 11:46am Posted by Eli

Lane Hudson has a nice piece in HuffPo about the inherent contradiction and intellectual dishonesty of the Bush administration’s claim of executive privilege to prevent even former aides like Harriet Miers and Sara Taylor from testifying about the US Attorney firings:

In the White House Press briefing that just concluded, press secretary Tony Snow said that he was not aware of the president being briefed on the US Attorney issue. He further said the president did not sign off on the firings.

CNN’s Ed Henry hit the nail on the head: if no conversations occurred with the president, and no advice was given, then how can the White House assert executive privilege, claiming the need to shield presidential advice?

Tony Snow’s response: “That’s an intriguing question.”

Darn straight it’s an intriguing question! What the heck are they protecting if there exists no presidential advice on the issue? I’ll tell you what they are protecting: Karl Rove and Harriet Miers, two of the President’s most loyal and trusted advisers.

(…)

This stinks to high Hell.

Further, on the O’Reilly Factor last night, guest Judge Andrew Napolitano clearly stated that legal precedent is that Executive Privilege applies only in the area of national security issues. For a court to change that precedent would be a major shift in judicial philosophy.

Good thing we have a Supreme Court with a healthy respect for precedent, eh?

The issue of executive privilege is now dead in the water. There is no circumstance under which there is a reasonable argument for Rove, Miers, et. al to not testify under oath in a public hearing before Congress.

I think the White House is simply being cautious. Just because Dubya doesn’t remember being involved in the US Attorney deliberations and decision-making doesn’t mean he wasn’t. He might have just forgot.

Does executive privilege still apply if the executive doesn’t remember any of the supposedly privileged conversations?

Entry Filed under: Bush,Constitution,Corruption/Cronyism,Republicans


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