President Obama's Justice Department defended former Bush administration lawyer John Yoo in a San Francisco federal court Friday, arguing that a prisoner formerly held as an enemy combatant had no right to sue Yoo for writing legal memos that allegedly led to his detention and torture.
"We're not saying we condone torture," department attorney Mary Mason said at a hearing on the government's request to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Jose Padilla. But any recourse against a government lawyer "is for the executive to decide, in the first instance, and for Congress to decide," not the courts, she said.
"You're not saying that if high public officials commit clearly illegal acts, a citizen subject to those acts has no remedy in this court?" asked U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White.
Not unless Congress has expressly authorized a lawsuit, Mason replied. She cited the argument the Justice Department made in Yoo's case last year, with President George W. Bush still in office, that courts should not interfere in executive decision-making, especially in wartime.
So lets see, the Democrats in Congress have been remarkably steadfast for two years now in refusing to prosecute Bush era crimes. And the Obama administration has been strongly on the side of making sure there are no prosecutions of Bush era criminals. And now they argue that the VICTIMS of the crimes have no ability to seek any justice for Bush era crimes.
Remember, top Democrats were secretly briefed on this during the Bush years. They did nothing to oppose it. Remember, most of this came out into public during the Bush years, but still the Democrats in Congress did nothing to oppose it. Now that the Justice Dept and the CIA are under Democrat control, they do everything possible to make sure that the torturers are not punished.
And, the Democrats started extraordinary rendition during the Clinton years, and Obama has refused to end the practice. What this really means is that the US still tortures. Only, we don't hold the blade or throw the switch to the electricity ourselves. Instead, we give the victim to someone like Egyptian intelligence. Then we stand there and listen to the screams while they wield the knife or apply the electricity. Then we look all pompous and proud as we use the technicality that we didn't wield the blade ourselves to say that we don't support torture.
Gotta love them Democrats.