Category: Uncategorized

The NYT Is Surveying 2020 Presidential Primary Candidates About Their Views on Executive Power

On Friday, I emailed numerous presidential primary campaigns an invitation to participate in a New York Times survey project on executive power. Our intent is to publish the full answers of each participating candidate, alongside notations indicating which others were unwilling or unable to answer the questions. We gave the campaigns a one-month deadline of […]

Remembering Robert Pear

My colleague Robert Pear died last night following a stroke. I would like to share a few memories and anecdotes about what it was like to work near and with him for the past 11 years. /1 Robert Pear, Authoritative Times Reporter on Health Care, Dies at 69 Robert had a very unusual personality. Despite […]

Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board releases PPD-28 surveillance report in response to my FOIA

In response to a Freedom of Information Act request I submitted in the spring of 2017, the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) has declassified and made public a partly redacted version of its December 2016 (ish) Top Secret report on the implementation of President Obama’s PPD-28, the presidential policy directive he issued in […]

Issue to watch: What are the limits on “collective self-defense” of partner forces?

Senator Tim Kaine, Democrat of Virginia, has sent a letter to the Pentagon continuing a dialogue about the executive branch’s expansive view of “collective self defense.” The letter contains an excerpt from a letter the military had sent him earlier this year, which is not public, in which it says that the US military has […]

Senators Press Pompeo over Monitoring Ex-Gitmo Detainees, Fate of Two Libyans Deported by Senegal

As Secretary of State Mike Pompeo heads to the Senate later today to testify before the Foreign Relations Committee, a bipartisan group of lawmakers have sent him a sharp-toned letter about the Trump-era State Department’s seeming neglect of its responsibility to monitor former Guantanamo detainees — and expressing “profound concern” about two who disappeared after they […]

Response to Robert Merry

A few weeks ago, the website of The American Conservative magazine published a lengthy article by its brief-tenured and outgoing editor, Robert W. Merry, carrying the sober and understated headline “The Nunes Memo and the Death of American Journalism.” Why was journalism dead? Because of me! More specifically, because when the famous memo prepared at […]

Lawmakers Warn Against Any Attempt to Jam 702 Surveillance Reauthorization Without a Real Debate

A bipartisan group of 10 senators today sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell today urging him not to try to attach an extension of the expiring warrantless surveillance program law, Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act, to some other must-pass bill and trying to jam it through without debate. If there […]

Trump signing statement challenges 42 statutory provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2018

When President Trump signed the fiscal year 2018 iteration of the annual National Defense Authorization Act this week, he appended a signing statement challenging several dozen of its provisions. Obviously he didn’t write the signing statement himself, but his legal team – spanning the Office of Legal Counsel, the Office of the White House Counsel, […]