August 5, 2008
House Democrats were correct to go to court to compel White House officials to appear before Congress. A federal judge late last week validated the decision by Democrats to file suit, ruling that White House aides aren't above the law. U.S. District Court Judge John Bates said that chief of staff Joshua Bolten and former White House counsel Harriet Miers must answer subpoenas from Congress. The House Judiciary Committee wants to ask Miers and Bolten about the firings of nine U.S. attorneys and whether they were politically motivated.
March 23, 1990 |
On all kinds of issues, George Bush has been accused of waffling. But on one matter of principle and taste, he was absolutely unyielding yesterday. "I'm President of the United States and I'm not going to eat any more broccoli," he told an alfresco news conference at the White House. Answering questions on the lawn after a tree-planting ceremony, Bush said firmly: "I do not like broccoli. " "I haven't liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it," he explained.
June 22, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Setting up a potential constitutional confrontation, a Republican-controlled House panel voted Wednesday to cite Attorney General Eric Holder for contempt of Congress hours after President Obama invoked executive privilege - for the first time - to withhold documents the committee demanded. The 23-17 party-line vote followed hours of caustic debate. The controversy goes next to the full House, where Republican Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio said there would be a vote next week unless there was a resolution in the meantime.
June 27, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - With a vote looming to hold Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt of Congress, a House committee chairman is challenging President Obama's claim of executive privilege, invoked to maintain secrecy for some documents related to a failed gun-tracking operation. Obama's claim broadly covers administration documents about the program called Operation Fast and Furious, not just those prepared for the president. But Rep. Darrell Issa (R., Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that recommended the contempt charge, maintains the privilege is reserved for documents to and from the president and his most senior advisers.
February 17, 1988 |
Public Advocate Alfred A. Slocum and Gov. Kean have asserted executive privilege in a lawsuit charging Slocum with age discrimination and reverse racial discrimination in his office's hiring practices. Yesterday, a judge in Camden ruled that Slocum must turn over memos between himself and the governor so that the judge can decide whether executive privilege applies and whether the documents are relevant to the case. The case involves H. Ian Wachstein, the former deputy public defender in charge of the Public Defender's Office in Camden County.
May 2, 1998 |
Whitewater prosecutor Kenneth W. Starr yesterday likened his fight with President Clinton's lawyers over what a president may keep private to the Watergate prosecutors' challenge of President Richard M. Nixon. In a professorial address to the San Antonio Bar Association, Starr noted that he was speaking on the 24th anniversary of the day Nixon's attorneys said they would attempt to block prosecutors' access to audiotapes made by a secret Oval Office system. Nixon ultimately lost that effort to invoke executive privilege.
June 2, 1998 |
Sidestepping comparisons to Watergate, President Clinton and his lawyers changed their legal strategy yesterday and abandoned their fight over executive privilege with independent counsel Kenneth Starr. The decision opens the way for grand jury testimony by White House communications aide Sidney Blumenthal in Starr's investigation of sex and perjury allegations involving Clinton and former White House intern Monica Lewinsky. But White House lawyers will continue to invoke attorney-client privilege to shield another aide, Bruce Lindsey, a longtime Clinton friend and White House lawyer, from answering questions before the same grand jury.
February 9, 1990 |
Without help from President Bush, former President Ronald Reagan's chances of keeping his personal White House diaries secret are greatly reduced, a federal judge indicated yesterday. Up to now, Bush's support has been limited to a statement that he believes Reagan's claim is proper. Reagan has claimed executive privilege - a doctrine intended to protect confidential presidential communications from public disclosure - in response to U.S. District Judge Harold H. Greene's order that Reagan turn over 33 diary excerpts to John M. Poindexter, who goes on trial Feb. 20 on charges stemming from the Iran-contra affair.
March 28, 1998
Bill Clinton worked hard for President Nixon's Democratic opponent; his future wife worked as a congressional staff lawyer to get Mr. Nixon impeached. Now, in a sorry twist for the "most ethical administration in history," the Clintons are going to Nixonian lengths to thwart independent counsel Kenneth Starr. All that's missing is for Mr. Clinton to purr, "I am not a crook. " The President has invoked "executive privilege" to excuse top advisers from answering certain questions before Mr. Starr's grand jury.
February 20, 1998 |
The White House prepared yesterday for a possible legal fight over President Clinton's ability to protect the secrecy of certain conversations he may have had with top advisers about Monica Lewinsky. As Bruce Lindsey, one of Clinton's closest aides, testified for a second day before a federal grand jury, the White House continued negotiating with Whitewater prosecutors to limit Lindsey's testimony. At issue is a legalism called executive privilege, which protects some confidential presidential discussions from disclosure.