Did Susan Collins Switch Parties? Cause She Wanted OLC Memos, Too

I hate to waste an entire post on this.

But the NYT’s report last night that President Obama was going to capitulate to the Benghazi truthers rather than turn over memos revealing who and where he has been killing people — as well as all the secondary reporting on it — has made this claim.

Rather than agreeing to some Democratic senators’ demands for full access to the classified legal memos on the targeted killing program, Obama administration officials are negotiating with Republicans to provide more information on the lethal attack last year on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, according to three Congressional staff members.

The strategy is intended to produce a bipartisan majority vote for Mr. Brennan in the Senate Intelligence Committee without giving its members seven additional legal opinions on targeted killing sought by senators and while protecting what the White House views as the confidentiality of the Justice Department’s legal advice to the president. It would allow Mr. Brennan’s nomination to go to the Senate floor even if one or two Democrats vote no to protest the refusal to share more legal memos. [my emphasis]

On February 4, Susan Collins was among the 11 Senators who signed a letter asking for “any and all legal opinions that lay out the executive branch’s official understanding of the President’s authority to deliberately kill American citizens.”

Perhaps Collins has been satisfied with the brief glimpse at the two memos it shared with the Committee back on February 7. Perhaps she — the Senator on the Intelligence Committee who asked the best questions about targeted killing efficacy — is not all that interested in the other memos the Administration is hiding, presumably along with uses of targeted killing she isn’t being briefed on. Perhaps she no longer supports the hinted hold-up for national security nominees.

But even on the Senate Intelligence Committee, the call for the targeted killing memos was a bipartisan affair (among those not on the committee, Mike Lee and Chuck Grassley also signed the letter, and Rand Paul sent his own demand for the memos). Heck, once upon a time, John Cornyn wanted to legislatively demand the memos.

Demanding that the President reveal what kind of targeted killing programs it supports is no hippie fetish. It is something that members of both parties have supported.

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One Response to Did Susan Collins Switch Parties? Cause She Wanted OLC Memos, Too

  • 1
Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel @mattkbh I would call her Loretta, but that seems disrespectful. Can those talking football just use "Beast" to distinguish?
7mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Dear @ChuckGrassley: Another question of expansive Exec Privilege you might look into are the 9000 pages withheld fr SSCI Torture Report.
10mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel If Democrats were smarter they'd get Lynch to lay out all the other areas of prosecutors discretion GOP loves.
11mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Will say this for Lynch: She's got the "ongoing investigation" answer down.
15mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel (Shorter FOIA discussion) Cornyn: Your USA office sucked at FOIA. How do you feel abt transparency? Lynch: Exemption 7E
19mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @espinsegall @ThePlumLineGS @sam_baker I'd like to continue this circular discussion, but I am off to a Super Bowl event. Much more fun!
19mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @espinsegall @ThePlumLineGS @sam_baker hahaha that cracks me up.
21mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Me, if I were AG nominee: "Dudes, if you've got such problem w/OLC nominating broad exec action, you shoulda done something abt Torture Yoo"
35mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Somewhere behind L Lynch's unflappable exterior, she's giggling wildly at how frustrated Cruz is getting over her filibuster.
36mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @espinsegall @ThePlumLineGS @sam_baker "Put into evidence"? In what trial was that?
39mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @espinsegall @ThePlumLineGS @sam_baker You mean like all this other "intent evidence" being ginned up after the fact? We'll see.
41mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @caidid "A list of all the best Garcia Marquez first sentences except his bestest first sentence."
53mreplyretweetfavorite
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