Friday night news dump: No DOJ discipline for authors of Bush "torture memos"

Seven years after the memos were written, it’s finally over — almost. Conyers is promising to hold hearings about the report issued tonight, with John Yoo and Jay Bybee called as witnesses, to give the left some small measure of victory. They can’t get satisfaction at the DOJ or in the polls, but maybe watching House progressives berate Team Bush — even while The One lets Pakistani intel work over those captured Taliban chieftains — will scratch their itch for moral vindication.

The conclusion resulted from a decision by top career Justice Department executive David Margolis to reverse a recommendation of investigators that found the two lawyers’ legal memos did constitute professional misconduct. That tentative conclusion, which was overruled by Margolis, said the lawyers should be referred to their state bar associations for potential disbarment.

But in the final report, the examination of the legal guidance written by Justice Department lawyers John Yoo and Jay Bybee found they did not constitute a professional breach that could have led to state disbarment…

In addition to the content itself, the constantly delayed release of the politically sensitive report had become an issue. Issuance of the report was repeatedly postponed for more than a year, prompting lawmakers and civil liberties groups to press for publication of the investigation’s findings. In November, Holder told Congress the report would be made public “by the end of the month.”

A friend who knows Yoo tells me that nutroots protesters have demonstrated outside his home for years, making life miserable for his family, so hopefully that knowledge will help salve the wound from tonight’s news. Meanwhile, Byron York has a story up at the Examiner about Eric Holder refusing to give Congress the names of nine DOJ attorneys (or rather, at least nine) who represented terrorist detainees before joining the Department. It’s painfully unclear how much is being to done to prevent conflicts of interest — recusals appear limited to very specific matters regarding specific detainees — but I’m looking forward to the matter being investigated, oh, seven years from now.

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David Strom 5:21 PM on June 02, 2023