Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Tony Snow on Executive Privilege

Glenn Greenwald of came up with this juicy piece of literature on the topic of "Executive Privilege," that interesting term invoked most often when a president is about to have his shorts pulled off in public (and, by the way, he forgot his underwear):
Evidently, [the President] wants to shield virtually any communications that take place within the White House compound on the theory that all such talk contributes in some way, shape or form to the continuing success and harmony of an administration. Taken to its logical extreme, that position would make it impossible for citizens to hold a chief executive accountable for anything. He would have a constitutional right to cover up.

Chances are that the courts will hurl such a claim out, but it will take time.

One gets the impression that [the President] values [his] survival more than most people want justice and thus will delay without qualm. But as the clock ticks, the public's faith in [the President] will ebb away for a simple reason: Most of us want no part of a president who is cynical enough to use the majesty of his office to evade the one thing he is sworn to uphold -- the rule of law.
Now, to whom do you think that Mr Tony Snow was referring? Bush Administration Press Secretary Tony Snow wrote the above in an op-ed titled "Executive Privilege is a Dodge" in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on March 29, 1998, obviously before he was Press Secretary.

[The President], in this case, was Mr Bill Clinton. But didn't it sound like he was talking about any President who's just lost his shorts in a strip poker game?