Sunday, June 04, 2006

Secrets, Secrets, Secrets.


Basically Bushco can kill lawsuits from the get because they claim state secrets privilege. They are the ones being challenged for illegal activity, but they hold all the cards. Great gig if you can get it.

Facing a wave of litigation challenging its eavesdropping at home and its handling of terror suspects abroad, the Bush administration is increasingly turning to a legal tactic that swiftly torpedoes most lawsuits: the state secrets privilege.

In recent weeks alone, officials have used the privilege to win the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by a German man who was abducted and held in Afghanistan for five months and to ask the courts to throw out three legal challenges to the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance program.

But civil liberties groups and some scholars say the privilege claim, in which the government says any discussion of a lawsuit's accusations would endanger national security, has short-circuited judicial scrutiny and public debate of some central controversies of the post-9/11 era.

The privilege has been asserted by the Justice Department more frequently under President Bush than under any of his predecessors — in 19 cases, the same number as during the entire eight-year presidency of Ronald Reagan, the previous record holder, according to a count by William G. Weaver, a political scientist at the University of Texas at El Paso.

Cross posted at Brilliant at Breakfast.

2 Comments:

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7/21/2006 09:31:00 PM  
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7/23/2006 06:24:00 PM  

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