Patterico's Pontifications

6/27/2007

Cheney: The Executive Branch Guy Who Isn’t

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:39 am

Dick Cheney invoked executive privilege to avoid disclosing who he met with when forming an energy policy.

Now his office is apparently claiming he is exempt from legislative oversight of the executive branch, because he is a member of the legislative branch. Because, you know, once in a blue moon he casts a tie-breaking vote in the Senate.

At first glance this strikes me as laughably hypocritical. But I’ve been extremely busy, so I haven’t had time to read up on it. Maybe there’s some plausible defense out there. It’s hard to believe there could be, but I’m willing to give you folks the chance to make the argument.

Is anyone willing to defend this seemingly indefensible position?

P.S. It’s not clear that this really is Cheney’s position. The article relies on anonymous sources for that assertion. But if it’s not his position, he should explain publicly why he is resisting oversight.

92 Responses to “Cheney: The Executive Branch Guy Who Isn’t”

  1. How I’ve been reading it is that Bush’s order was for all offices in the executive branch, and that the VP’s office is in both the executive and legislative branch. Since it performs two roles in two different branches, it’s not part of the EO. It takes more than a little bit of suspension to buy into it totally, but it’s unique, I’ll give it that.

    Of course, being an EO, the smart thing to have done would have been for Bush to issue another one clarifying the position.

    Jeff (eb7e2f)

  2. It’s just one example of the respect Bush/Cheney have for the rule of law. That is, THEIR rule of
    law. It’s clear why these types want to pack the Supreme Court with jurists who think as they do.
    Speech they agree with is protected; speech they don’t agree with, is not.

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  3. Speech they agree with is protected; speech they don’t agree with, is not.

    Yes, and that’s clearly a distinctly unique viewpoint of the Bush Administration, isn’t it?

    No, it’s not like we have the likes of Durbin (D), Feinstein (D), Kucinich (Loony), Lott (RINO), McCain (Megalomaniac) etc. pushing for a return of the inaptly named Fairness Doctrine or anything. Why, that would be absurd, wouldn’t it?

    I think it’s pretty clear that the 1st Amendment is under fire by pretty much every stripe of self-interested political hack, and is not limited to Bush/Cheney. Which doesn’t really negate your point, of course, but does dilute it a bit.

    DaveG (a721ef)

  4. I hope the Vice-President is wrong here, but I think he may be right.

    One need to look at the history of Dick Cheney to understand how he has come to arrive at this positions, allegedly acknowledged by anonymous sources.

    George H. Bush is named VP by Reagan. Bush’s VP’s office comes up in Iran-Contra hearings, of which Congressman Cheney is ranking Republican on the committee. Reagan’s term expires. Bush wins Republican nomination and office of President. Bush names Cheney his SecDef.

    I think Cheney is exploring an angle that probably came up in the Iran-Contra hearings but was never cited as a defense.

    Gabriel Sutherland (90b3a1)

  5. Aw come on, Cheney is just messin with em. From what I understand, some guy from the archives is supposed to come over every year to evaluate the amount of storage space the records will require. Is this all the democrats have to complain about?

    Hammer (1f0f07)

  6. Two small problems with this post. In the first sentence, “who” should be “whom”. In the third paragraph, the word “laughably” should be deleted.

    There is nothing funny here. By all accounts, Pres. Bush could have exempted Cheney, himself, and anyone else he pleased when he issued the EO. He didn’t. Rather than amend the EO, the VP concocts a ridiculous excuse and the Bushbots will be out there parroting it. Once again, contempt for the rule of law is the point and not collateral damage.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (36af38)

  7. Dilute it a bit?

    Maybe two parts per million.

    If I get your drift, you see McCain/Feingold
    through the same eyes as SCROTUS. Keep
    that Theocratic Wingnut Nation healty, wealthy
    and wise.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/26/washington/26faith.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  8. I think a plausible argument can be made that the VP is part of the legislative branch. I’m not convinced that that is the argument that Cheney is making, and I suspect that he’s trying to have it both ways — eg, that he’s going to argue that he’s exempt from both executive and legislative oversight, which is (a) ahistorical, and (b) intolerable.

    aphrael (12fba5)

  9. Keep
    that Theocratic Wingnut Nation healty, wealthy
    and wise.

    And if I get your drift…

    Just so you know, simply because you disagree with something doesn’t make it wrong. Further, even it is wrong, that doesn’t mean it can’t be said. The irony of your position, while clearly lost on you, is quite striking.

    DaveG (a721ef)

  10. “Further, even it is wrong, that doesn’t mean it can’t be said.”

    You’re drifting. I did not say that. Did you read the NYT link? Say what you want, but don’t make Christendom a shadow government.

    BTW; If McCain Feingold is so bad, what is your alternative? Or do you think campaign financing
    is ok the way it is?

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  11. Semantic, do you even realize how big a crock the fairness doctrine is?

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  12. 1) Cheney did not say he is not in the executive branch, he said he is not an agency in the executive branch as defined by the executive order. Both the president and the vice president fall under the “Executive Office of the President” as far as agencies go.

    2) The Constitution does not address any executive authority for the Vice President, so long as the President is alive and not incapacitated. The Vice President’s authorities are only those delegated to him by the President as his assistant. The Constitution does say that the VP is the President of the Senate, a position that Cheney could practice any time theoretically, not just to cast a tie-breaking vote.

    Vatar (bbc421)

  13. It isn’t in my opinion a defense that is going to be successful, but it is not ridiculous. The Vice President position is a weird one in the Constitution. He does not report to the President, as the President cannot remove him. So he is arguably not in the Executive Branch. The Vice President has no actual power other than his ability to cast tie breaking votes in the Senate unless and until he succeeds the President.

    The problem is that it does not really work to consider the Vice President as in the legislative branch as then the President could not delegate responsibilities to him, as Bush obviously has.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  14. By the way, the real root of the issue between Waxman and Cheney is that Cheney won’t turn over visitor logs to Cheney’s residence, a matter that the Supreme Court has already ruled on, but Waxman won’t drop it.

    Vatar (bbc421)

  15. I think a better argument is that the VP is a Constitutional officer, elected in his own right, and not subject to “orders” from the President. Unlike other members of the executive, the President cannot fire the VP, and by extension cannot order him about.

    OTOH, Bush is under no obligation to give Cheney anything to do or any access to any government process. Presumably he could condition these duties and access on following certain rules, but I think he’d have to be specific about that for it to stick.

    The VP is not just another presidential appointment.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  16. “The problem is that it does not really work”

    Dana Perino stumbled through that explanation already. Cheney is not accountable to anyone,
    apparently. But I do admire the chutzpah of those defending his position.

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  17. Again, Semanticleo, you don’t understand the Constitution. The Vice President can be impeached by Congress, so he is accountable in that sense.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  18. And if you listen to Rahm Emmanuel, he’s accountable to Congress by virtue of their funding power.

    Pablo (99243e)

  19. The Vice President has two, and only two, constitutionally specified duties: as President of the Senate (in the legislative branch) and to succeed the President if the president dies in office or is declared to be incapacitated. That sounds like legislative branch to me. His succession duties haven’t fallen on most vice presidents.

    The Vice President has, in relatively recent history, been assigned duties by the President, but the VP could have declined them if he so chose. If the President was dissatisfied with the Vice President’s performance of those assumed duties, he could reassign the duties to others, but he couldn’t fire the VP.

    The original Constitution had the Vice President as the second-place finisher in the Electoral College, so the VP was actually the President’s political opponent.

    Dana (3e4784)

  20. It’s certainly nice to note that all these Democratic witch hunts, err, excuse me, investigations, are not in any way impeding the ability of the Democrats to deliver on the legislative agenda they promised the electorate last year.

    Heh.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  21. Since when are our elected officials obligated to tell us who they met with, when, and what was discussed? This whole issue is even more bizarre than Cheney’s confusion about which branch of government he belongs to.

    LTEC (e72607)

  22. I’ll take a wild guess and say Cheney’s house may have played host to transcripts gotten from the questionable NSA domestic surveillance operations.

    What else would be worth hiding?

    alphie (015011)

  23. Dana,

    Good points. However, I would argue that the Constitution details separate institutions, sharing powers. In other words, the Vice President, like the President by the way, is an Executive who shares in the Legislative powers. VP: tie votes. Pres: veto.

    It works the other way, too. Senate: approval of treaties which, as we learn from Locke, are the Federative power, and usually given to the Executive. The Senate’s role in treaties, officer appointments, etc.., are listed in Article II as an exception to the President’s grant of the whole of the Executive power.

    The VP’s breaking of ties is an exception to the powers granted to the Legislative branch. By the way, the VP is the President of the Senate even when they aren’t voting.

    Fritz (d62210)

  24. It isn’t bizarre when you understand that the Collective Wingnut Nation rule is ‘Republicans and/or anyone associating with Republicans are obligated to tell us who they met with, when and what was discussed.’

    OTT maybe not, ‘turns out Ronnie Earle indicted Tom DeLay for a crime that didn’t exist, wasn’t on the books’ Dick DeGuerin attorney for Delay.

    Back to Semanticleo who really would prefer to just cut out the tongues of those who disagree with the Collective Wingnut Nation than ever offer that great American past time ‘innocent before proven guilty’.

    susan (7faf4d)

  25. Correction
    “innocent until proven guilty’

    susan (7faf4d)

  26. And if you listen to Rahm Emmanuel, he’s accountable to Congress by virtue of their funding power.

    Unless you read the actual budget. Congress doesn’t actually approve any budget for the VP. Any executive budget (office and staff at the White House, etc.) that the VP has is listed in the budget as “Executive Office of the President.” There are not separate budgets for the president and vice president.

    Vatar (bbc421)

  27. Vatar, are you saying that listening to Rahm Emmanuel might not be a good idea? 😉

    Pablo (99243e)

  28. What else would be worth hiding?

    Dunno, but I’ll bet that paragon of Democratic virtue, Sandy Burger, could get to the bottom of it. He’s, you know, really good at that kind of thing.

    Hogarth (a721ef)

  29. And if you listen to Rahm Emmanuel, he’s accountable to Congress by virtue of their funding power.

    So, Congress could cut off all funding for the Executive Branch, simply by overriding a veto, and there’s nothing anyone could do about it until the next election?

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  30. Senator Kerry’s office, er I mean, Raw Story, is quoting from a letter sent by David Addington to Senator Kerry’s office.

    http://rawstory.com/news/2007/Cheneys_chief_of_staff_rebukes_Kerry_0626.html

    They have a link to a PDF, but the file is corrupted.

    FYI: David Addington is Cheney’s chief of staff. Addington is also the former Republican counsel from the House Committee that investigated Iran-Contra.

    Another point for my theory. :)

    Gabriel Sutherland (90b3a1)

  31. Horgarth,

    How many Americans have any idea who sandy Berger is?

    1% maybe?

    If it turns out that Cheney has been using the NSA for political or financial gains, the Republican Party will cease to exist.

    Remember Bush withdrew John Bolton’s nomination to be U.N. Ambassador because he didn’t want disclosed what was in the 21 NSA intercepts Bolton had requested transcripts of.

    I think the Dems are getting near the mothership with this line of investigaion.

    18 months to go…can the Pubs run out the clock?

    alphie (015011)

  32. Here’s the letter hosted on Kerry’s website.

    http://kerry.senate.gov/newsroom/pdf/Addington_Letter.pdf

    Gabriel Sutherland (90b3a1)

  33. Dick Cheneys refusal to accept oversight is simply a manifestation of the same virus that infects the entire Bush administration. These people are NOT CONSERVATIVES THEY ARE FASCISTS..when is that going to sink in? They are a disgrace to the name of Conservative. They dont believe in laws..the ARE the law..how many examples do you need? They do not hesitate to lie and deceive and “work on the dark side” as Cheney has said, to achieve their goals. They have no trust in Democracy, no respect or trust in the people or the idea of democracy. Their actions tell you that.
    If Cheney cared about this country he would have been outraged at the false info justifying the war but he was not because he was a part of that effort to “sell’ us that same false info. He is still at it today!

    He would also have cooperated with efforts to stop the mishandling of secret information but he doesnt care about secret info damaging the US being leaked.. the Valorie Plame incident showed us that. The only information he wants hidden is his own nasty methods and hidden agenda. (Hell he even knifed the President on the issue of tax cuts as you probably have already read.)

    I cannot make this point strongly enough. People who believe in democracy do not act like this. This administration and its behavior, under the guise of protecting us, undermines our very nation and all the things we stand for. OBL can bring down buildings but only we can destroy our precious heritage and values and that is exactly what Cheney and crew are doing.

    If you don’t understand this at this point then short of the heavens parting and a voice saying “Cheney is a liar and a criminal” then I dont know what will wake you up. And sometimes I think even a voice from the clouds would not be enough for some…

    Charlie (04c679)

  34. Mr Murphy wrote:

    So, Congress could cut off all funding for the Executive Branch, simply by overriding a veto, and there’s nothing anyone could do about it until the next election?

    No necessary; they could simply refuse to appropriate funds for the White House for FY 2008, and there’s no legislation for the President to sign or veto.

    Dana (3e4784)

  35. Charlie, the Valerie Plame fiasco showed nothing of the sort about the Vice President. As has been often pointed out, Plame had already been burned by Russian espionage, Wilson and Plame themselves outed her by their own actions, and no one has shown that her “outing” did any damage to the US. Together with Alphie’s heavy breathing, this kind of commentary is just specious.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  36. How many Americans have any idea who alphie is?

    0.000000233% maybe?

    If it turns out that Hugo Chavez has been wearing pink lacy underwear under his Army fatigues for personal satisfaction, Citgo will cease to exist.

    Believe me, I’m making about as much sense as you are right now.

    I'm Geekier (55ea85)

  37. Charlie,

    Why don’t you go read up on actual fascism and get back to us, you naïve schmuck.

    c

    carlitos (b38ae1)

  38. According to a guest I heard a few weeks back on Coast to Coast, Cheney is a Reptilian.

    Harry Arthur (b318a5)

  39. Hmm, Reptilians allegedly can change their shape. This would seem to make sense since Cheney is able to change branches of government.

    Gabriel Sutherland (90b3a1)

  40. We’ll find out what dead-eye dick is trying to hide sooner or later, geeker.

    My money is on NSA transcripts.

    As we learned from the Bolton confirmation hearing, when someone in the “executive” branch wants a transcript from an NSA intercept, the NSA sends it to them via courier, who has to sign in.

    In addition to going to great lengths to hide which classified documents he has, Cheney has also been going to great lengths to hide who has been visiting him.

    But after it was revealed that that malevolent little troll Kissinger has been giving Bush & Cheney regular lessons on how to screw up a war, who cares who else has been paying him visits?

    Just a guess, I know.

    But my money is on Cheney trying to cover up regular visits from NSA couriers.

    The popcorn is on.

    alphie (015011)

  41. * yawn * alphie, it would not be a revelation to learn that Cheney is receiving intelligence material.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  42. Harry Arthur:

    According to a guest I heard a few weeks back on Coast to Coast, Cheney is a Reptilian.

    Hey, I resemble that remark!

    Dafydd

    Dafydd "Big Lizards" ab Hugh (445647)

  43. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reptilian_humanoid

    lol. They look like Little Green Football’s lizaroids.

    Gabriel Sutherland (90b3a1)

  44. I will be a revelation if that “intelligence” material came from the NSA spying on the Democrats or various American business meetings, Robin.

    alphie (015011)

  45. “The Vice President can be impeached by Congress, so he is accountable in that sense.”

    I doubt Dick would agree.

    IMPERIOUS REX!!!!!

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  46. Semanticleo, since there is no basis for your insinuation, it is another example of your cheap smears.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  47. Alphie, such is purely your fantasy. There is no evidence that such is going on, and a lot of evidence that the NSA personnel would have nothing to do with it.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  48. “cheap smears.”

    Nothing cheap about the education we’ve all received from the current occupants of the WH.

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  49. What’s cheap is your defamation, for that is all that it is, Semanticleo.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  50. We’re all clear on your meaning Robin.

    What would you say in defense of your hero(es)?

    I mean, other than it’s not fair to call them
    crass, anti-constitutional kleptocrats?

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  51. That’s true Robin,

    That’s why over a dozen NSA employees squealed to the New York Times about illegal doins’ going on over at the NSA.

    That’s what started the whole illegal domestic snooping mess in the first place.

    Why do you suppose Bush kept Michael Hayden, the guy who was in charge of the NSA on 9/11, around instead of firing him for incompetence on 9/12?

    Hayden even got another star and the job running the CIA for his efforts running the NSA post 9/11.

    Heckuva job, Mikey.

    A regular J. Edgar Hoover.

    alphie (015011)

  52. No necessary; they could simply refuse to appropriate funds for the White House for FY 2008, and there’s no legislation for the President to sign or veto.Except for all the other bills. Like, say, Congressional operations. But the whole thing, like Emannuel’s suggestion, is absurd. Yes, Congress could zero out the military, or social security, or the President or court system (except for judicial salaries), but they wouldn’t.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  53. Is anyone on the Democrat side the least bit embarrassed by the pettiness of these “investigations”? It makes the Whitewater thing look like restraint. Next they’re going to be looking for Jenna Bush’s overdue library books.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  54. Alphie, none of the leaks about the NSA surveillance program ever implied spying against political opponents – so your attempt to piggyback your smears upon those stories is just dishonest.

    By the way, it is more likely that the leaks were from the FISA court, not the NSA. The judge who some suspect of being the leaker has resigned from the FISA court.

    Meanwhile, your claim is just another baseless smear job.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  55. It’s not a smear attmpt, Robin.

    Cheney’s rep couldn’t get any lower anyways, could it?

    Just entering in my guess into the “what’s Cheney hiding” contest.

    BTW, Christiane Amanpour and some Democratic politicians were mentioned as possible NSA targets when this story first broke.

    alphie (015011)

  56. “What would you say in defense of your hero(es)?”

    The silence is deafening.

    Semanticleo (10a7bd)

  57. Here’s one more wrinkle: according to what I’ve read (in the MSM) Cheney is not refusing to turn over any documents. He is refusing to tell the National Archives how many documents his office has classified or declassified. He’s not refusing to tell what is in the documents because he’s not been asked (at least yet) to tell what is in the documents. He is refusing to say how many classified documents his office has.

    He’s not refusing to tell what secrets his office knows. He’s refusing to tell how secretive his office is.

    kishnevi (8731ef)

  58. “What would you say in defense of your hero(es)?”

    Bush and Cheney have done more to protect us from another 9/11 and taken the fight to another shore unlike the Semanticleo’s of the world that would prefer we return to the weekness parity of a Clinton or Carter mindset that resulted in the passive dream world that has provided the fodder our enemies have underestimated.

    While the two have made numerous mistakes that proves no one’s perfect—–yes they are still my heros.

    Rovin (7f64b8)

  59. Even assuming that Cheney’s office is in the Executive Branch, wouldn’t it be the job of some other Executive Branch entity to oversee whether it is following an Executive Order? Is it really the business of the Legislature whether Executive Branch offices are obeying Executive Orders?

    DWPittelli (2e1b8e)

  60. So do you folks all stand behind Ann Coulter and her style with regards to being confronted by Elizabeth Edwards!

    Compassionate conservatism, indeed!

    The Liberal Avenger (b8c7e2)

  61. The VP is in a unique position.

    He is mentioned in Article 2 as partaking of the executive power of the government, but his only stated duty is to act as president of the Senate.

    If Cheney was to be impeached, he would act as President of the Senate during his impeachment trial. The Senate has sole power to try any impeachment. The Constitution provides that the VP would be replaced by the Chief Justice during any Presidential Impeachment Trial, as it was clearly seen that having the VP as president of such a trial would be a conflict. The constitution makes no such provision for the Senate to have other than the VP as president during a VP Impeachment trial.

    Was it Albert Gore Jr. who said “no controling legal authority”?

    Don Meaker (999e4b)

  62. So, Congress could cut off all funding for the Executive Branch, simply by overriding a veto, and there’s nothing anyone could do about it until the next election?”
    Well, yes! Congress can cut all funding for the Executive Branch, which will defund all of the things they (Congress) want to spend money on. They cannot refuse to pay the salary of the President and Vice-President (Art II, 7). And, of course, they would be stiffing all of the Civil-Service employees in the Executive Branch, many of whom are not supporters of the Pres/VP.

    This is just another pissing match between the beknighted within Congress, and an Administration that they detest, but cannot remove.

    The President and Vice-President are Constitutional Officers, and are not employees of the government per se. And, in fact, the President, as Head-of-State (Commander-In-Chief), is the United States; and, as CEO, is the Government (Executive Branch).

    Though the three branches are theoretically co-equal, that equality is more in theory than fact. As disputes over the last 220 years have shown, the Executive has great power that the Legislature and Judiciary can only overcome in a limited manner. The primary power of the Legislature is the power of the purse. Their power to defund entire areas of the Executive Branch is pretty absolute; though they excercise it sparingly due to the absolute chaos that can result from closing down entire Departments and Agencies.

    I believe that many of our political problems today result from the fact that we have selected leaders in all areas of politics who are ignorant of history, are highly narcissistic, and have very few skill-sets other than convincing people to vote for them.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  63. You know, I’m afraid I just don’t give a shit about any of this.

    Miked (bc4861)

  64. “The President and Vice-President are Constitutional Officers, ”
    and they like everyone else must abide by rules.
    Cheney wants not to.
    End of story.

    “Even assuming that Cheney’s office is in the Executive Branch,”

    Bizarre. Just bizzarre.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  65. I’m not a lawyer so my reading could be completely hosed here but Kerry is relying on this clause of the executive order:

    (i) “Agency” means any “Executive agency,” as defined in 5 U.S.C. 105, and any other entity within the executive branch that comes into the possession of classified information.

    but Bush amended the order in 2003 and one of the sections that was amended is the one that deals with review of materials for declassification by the ISOO.

    Originally it read:

    (b) Information originated by:

    (1) the incumbent President;

    (2) the incumbent President’s White House Staff;

    (3) committees, commissions, or boards appointed by the incumbent President; or

    (4) other entities within the Executive Office of the President that solely advise and assist the incumbent President is exempted from the provisions of paragraph (a), above. However, the Archivist shall have the authority to review, downgrade, and declassify information of former Presidents under the control of the Archivist pursuant to sections 2107, 2111, 2111 note, or 2203 of title 44, United States Code. Review procedures developed by the Archivist shall provide for consultation with agencies having primary subject matter interest and shall be consistent with the provisions of applicable laws or lawful agreements that pertain to the respective Presidential papers or records. Agencies with primary subject matter interest shall be notified promptly of the Archivist’s decision. Any final decision by the Archivist may be appealed by the requester or an agency to the Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel. The information shall remain classified pending a prompt decision on the appeal.

    It now reads:

    Sec. 3.5. Mandatory Declassification Review. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, all information classified under this order or predecessor orders shall be subject to a review for declassification by the originating agency if:

    (1) the request for a review describes the document or material containing the information with sufficient specificity to enable the agency to locate it with a reasonable amount of effort;

    (2) the information is not exempted from search and review under sections 105C, 105D, or 701 of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 403-5c, 403-5e, and 431); and

    (3) the information has not been reviewed for declassification within the past 2 years. If the agency has reviewed the information within the past 2 years, or the information is the subject of pending litigation, the agency shall inform the requester of this fact and of the requesters appeal rights.

    (b) Information originated by:

    (1) the incumbent President or, in the performance of executive duties, the incumbent Vice President;

    (2) the incumbent Presidents White House Staff or, in the performance of executive duties, the incumbent Vice Presidents Staff;

    (3) committees, commissions, or boards appointed by the incumbent President; or

    (4) other entities within the Executive Office of the President that solely advise and assist the incumbent President is exempted from the provisions of paragraph (a) of this section. However, the Archivist shall have the authority to review, downgrade, and declassify papers or records of former Presidents under the control of the Archivist pursuant to sections 2107, 2111, 2111 note, or 2203 of title 44, United States Code. Review procedures developed by the Archivist shall provide for consultation with agencies having primary subject matter interest and shall be consistent with the provisions of applicable laws or lawful agreements that pertain to the respective Presidential papers or records. Agencies with primary subject matter interest shall be notified promptly of the Archivists decision. Any final decision by the Archivist may be appealed by the requester or an agency to the Panel. The information shall remain classified pending a prompt decision on the appeal.

    So it appears to me that the President really did exempt the VP from oversight by ISOO.

    chad (582404)

  66. Hey ROBBIN come out of the dark and wake up from your right wing fantasy. The CIA referred the case to the justice department for prosecution so dont tell me there was nothing illegal or harmful in her outing! You just are more interested in defending Bush and this criminal crew than in having justice for the destruction of a real program to find real WMDs. Your facts are totally wrong and if you doubt that tell me why the CIA pressed for an investigation on the grounds that she had been outed. Next you will be telling me there is a rogue element in the CIA out to get Bush! Ya! I have heard that one too along with the endless spinning justifying Bush idiot decision to go into Iraq on false reasons. Don’t let the facts get in the way of your pathetic attempt to minimize this disgusting episode in which a woman working on the most important project imaginable was outed only because her husband dare tell the truth about Bush the Liar..

    And CARLITOS Regarding your suggestion I read up on fascism.. I can do you one better .. I lived in a fascist state for two years. I was there when Marcos took over in the Philippines and I am here to tell you Bush and Cheney are of the same cloth! Lies and manipulation, secret prisons, disregard for the rule of law, packing of the courts, and on and on. Eventually he declaired one man rule. Dont lecture me about fascism. I was there in 1970 (approximately) as a member of the USAF when this happened all in response to Muslim bombings. Sound familiar? I lived through that fascist power grab in the name of protecting the people so I am familiar with the ploy. Where were you at that time???

    Charlie (04c679)

  67. Why dont Bush supporters just drop the fiction and say it.. “The dont believe Bush has done anything wrong and he doesnt have to give any more than token support to the law. He IS THE LAW..Democracy is just an inconvenient irritant to them. Be honest Bushies.. that is what you really believe deep down inside, now isnt it? You spin and and spin but you know damn well that if ANY Democrat had done exactly the same as Bush you would be in a uproar. What ever happened to the concern about the growth of the power of the Chief Executive, or the concern about “nation building” or massive deficits? I know! I know! No need to say it!!.I will save you the trouble. ..”I hate America” and “Everything’s changed including our Constitution since 9/11″ Ok I said it. No need for you to repeat that sick mantra yet another time!!!

    Charlie (04c679)

  68. Rovekin you must be joking..To suggest that these two clowns have made us safer and that the entire disaster can be written off as ” no one’s perfect” is laughable. Well Mrs Lincoln.. nothing is perfect but aside from that one thing, it was a pretty good play, wasnt it?

    Charlie (04c679)

  69. Would you like a tissue, Charlie?

    Pablo (99243e)

  70. Beldar thinks that Cheney gets the better of the argument.

    craig mclaughlin (bf6976)

  71. The CIA referred the case to the justice department for prosecution so dont tell me there was nothing illegal or harmful in her outing!

    The presence of an investigation is proof of a crime? Somebody better tell the Duke lacrosse players…

    Vatar (bb1678)

  72. No, Charlie, this Bushie thinks your statements are counter-factual nonsense. Not because you are stupid, or ignorant or deranged. Just because you, a human being, have allowed something to override your good sense. Maybe it’s thinking we (the Bushies) aren’t listening.

    Well I’m listening. I just don’t agree. Why not try dealing with that with grace and good humor?

    Oh, I can answer that question. Frequently you DO deal with our disagreement with grace and good humor! But then something really pisses you off and you let fly.

    Well, I’ve done the same myself.

    Yours,
    Wince

    Wince and Nod (931cf0)

  73. @68

    I’m not particularly impressed by the argument presented there. A large part of his reasoning is based on the fact that until 2003 the OVP complied with the ISOO requests. No Duh, the order was revised in 2003 to specifically include the VP. After that they stopped reporting.

    Makes sense to me but hell who am I.

    chad (719bfa)

  74. The presence of an investigation is proof of a crime?

    Maybe they were trying to figure out how her husband wound up writing an OpEd in the NYT about his CIA travels.

    Pablo (99243e)

  75. “A large part of his reasoning is based on the fact that until 2003 the OVP complied with the ISOO requests. ”

    Then you must not have read the post in question.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  76. Yeah I actually did, did you?

    chad (719bfa)

  77. Sorry that was a little snarky so here we go- Whoever wrote the piece you linked laid out what he believed to be Addington’s argument against Cheney being covered by the reporting process, he the responded:

    I don’t think this would be an especially strong argument, had Addington made it, both because the OVP is an entity within the Executive branch and, more importantly, because the E.O. does specifically exempt the President and Vice President, and, separately, their staffs, from one particular (declassification) requirement (section 3.5(b)) — something that would have been unnecessary had the President intended such staffs not to be covered in the first instance — and in so doing specifically distinguishes those officers and staffs from “other entities within the Executive Office of the President.”

    Moreover, such an interpretation would be belied by the fact that until 2003, the OVP did comply with the ISOO directive, and, even more so, by the fact that entities within the Executive Office of the President, such as the National Security Council, are reported to continue to comply to this very day.

    It is also interesting to note that when you look up the Executive Office of the President, the Office of the Vice President is not listed as a component.

    chad (719bfa)

  78. What you refer to is menioned in the middle of the piece prefaced by the word “moreover”; the next phrase begins “even more so” and the next para. begins “most importantly.”

    On top of that what you quote above refers to reveiw for declassification, not the oversight of the handling of classified material itself. And that change refers to the VP’s new authority to declassify information originating from his office, and the handing of those and other classified materials by his staff but originating elsewhere.

    I could go on. read the post again, carefully.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  79. Beldar has an interesting analysis of the legal language today. I stand by my analysis in #58 above, that common sense is also on Cheney’s side, at least vis a vis the Congress.

    DWPittelli (2e1b8e)

  80. And CARLITOS Regarding your suggestion I read up on fascism.. I can do you one better .. I lived in a fascist state for two years.

    Sorry to hear that. Oh wait, you were in the US armed forces, so living in a fascist state didn’t really affect your lifestyle at all then, did it? Did Marcos’ fascism keep you and the rest of the 405th from patronizing the, um, ladies in Angeles City? Give me a break with your “I was there” schtick. I salute you for your service, but it does not entitle you to play the “poor me I lived under fascism” card.

    I was there when Marcos took over in the Philippines and I am here to tell you Bush and Cheney are of the same cloth!

    Here, however, is where your irrationality starts…

    Lies and manipulation,

    Mmm Hmm.

    secret prisons,

    Even Judge Posner has advocated these, one of the more liberal appeals judges in the country. Didn’t they teach you about war in the USAF?

    disregard for the rule of law, packing of the courts, and on and on.

    On those long plane rides to the Phillipines, I don’t suppose you looked into the presidency of FDR, the only one every to attempt to “pack the courts” in US history? Who, pray tell, should appoint judges under Bush/Cheney – you?

    Eventually he declaired one man rule.

    Yes, an actual fascist declared martial law and one man rule. You are still so incapacitated by Bush/Cheney hatred, you can’t even believe that Bush/Cheney will leave in less than two years. When (not if) it happens, what will you say then? You already have a Dem-controlled Congress – why did BushCo allow this? Your theory is irrational.

    Dont lecture me about fascism.

    Don’t lecture me about it either, Mr. American guy who served overseas.

    I was there in 1970 (approximately) as a member of the USAF when this happened all in response to Muslim bombings. Sound familiar? I lived through that fascist power grab in the name of protecting the people so I am familiar with the ploy. Where were you at that time???

    I was on the South Side of Chicago. I bet you that the race riots, the Gangster Disciples, the Black Peacestone Nation and the Black Panthers, coupled with Daley’s police force and the mob, kept the Chicago citizenry in a lot more fear than your silly fascist fantasies ever could. And the hookers weren’t nearly as pretty as what you had either.

    carlitos (b38ae1)

  81. Carlitos.. I never patronized the ladies of Angeles city and I never expected anyone to feel sorry for me because I lived in a fascist state. FYI the US military does not live under the rule of the host country. I mentioned the fascist state in response to someone who suggested I read about fascism not to win any sympathy. You are truly an ignorant person.

    Charlie (04c679)

  82. One more thing Carlitos you are sickening and reprehensible to insinuate I frequented prostitutes!
    And your ignorant remark that fascism is silly just shows where your head is.. Of course you never served, I can tell. Typical. You really disgust me.

    Charlie (04c679)

  83. Apologies for the non sequitur. Just to clarify, I meant your fascist fantasies regarding the US. Marcos’ fascism was real. That you can’t tell the difference between elected Republicans and Ferdinand Marcos is what scares some of us.

    carlitos (b38ae1)

  84. Carlitos–and the similarities between elected Republicans and Ferdinand Marcos is what scares the rest of us.

    Essentially, the policy of the Bush administration is that “Because of the emergency, we can ignore the laws and Constitution whenever we want to. And we get to decide how long the emergency goes on.” If you support that, and you think that they are correct because living within the Constitution just won’t protect us from the baddies, please say so. I won’t attack you. But I prefer to live unprotected with the Constitution than protected with it. Because, in the long run, it’s the government who is the worst enemy of liberty, not the jihadis. It’s the government who dominates our lives and is everywhere we go, not the jihadis.

    kishnevi (da26af)

  85. “But I prefer to live unprotected with the Constitution than protected without it.”

    Kishnevi, I fixed what I think was a typo.

    “Even Judge Posner has advocated these, one of the more liberal appeals judges in the country”
    If you can say that, carlitos, than you know nothing about Posner.

    Posner should be disbarred.

    AF (4a3fa6)

  86. And a typo of my own in #77:
    I’ll take the opppotunity to clarify as well.

    “On top of that what you quote above refers to reveiw for declassification, not the oversight of the handling of classified material itself. And that change refers to the VP’s new authority to declassify information originating from his office, NOT the handing of those and other classified materials by his staff, and not it can be argued even his own handling of materials originating elsewhere.”

    AF (4a3fa6)

  87. This is just another attempt to gin-up a controversy so that Nostralitus can convene a hearing, throw subpeenees around the reflecting pool, and get his name in the LAT on a daily basis.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  88. AF, Here’s another lawyer:

    http://beldar.blogs.com/beldarblog/2007/06/does-cheney-hav.html

    (HT Glenn Reynolds)

    Robert Bell (706dc8)

  89. Some stout comments. Patterico, you (and I, for that matter) are blessed in the quality and articulate nature of our commenters! (But I know you know this.)

    I still think Cheney’s argument flies. But Prof. Marty Lederman’s arguments and source references (linked from #68 above and elsewhere) are indeed impressive. I’m working on a reply, that I’ll likely post on my blog tomorrow. (It’s written, but needs better proof-reading than I can currently provide before it’s published.)

    Beldar (a498cf)

  90. Why exactly, AF, should Posner “be disbarred”??
    On the basis of his opinions regarding legal treatment of global jihadists, with which presumably you don’t agree?
    or, do you have substantial misdeeds to report to the bar?
    is this just another example of careless hyperbole from you?
    (words matter, you know.)

    Deb (8c50f1)

  91. it is well known that cheney thinks exec. power has been encroached on by congress in the years following watergate, i think he’s just sticking it to congress cuz he can

    james conrad (7cd809)


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