A President Barack Obama nominee to a federal appeals court is mired in controversy amid revelations that the former Justice Department lawyer had written government memos legally justifying the killing of an American overseas with a drone.
In response to concerns from senators and the American Civil Liberties Union, the White House agreed this week to allow lawmakers to review at least one of the memos from David Barron, now a Harvard Law School scholar, in a classified setting.
The bruhaha over the nominee to the US First Circuit Court of Appeals is reminiscent of the flap over a President George W. Bush nominee to the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals. Before Bush elevated Jay Bybee to the Ninth Circuit, Bybee, as an assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel, had signed off on John Yoo’s now-famous torture memos authorizing waterboarding and other torture methods in 2002.
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