Inauguration Week Was a Busy Week for Dead-Enders

A number of you have pointed to this story describing the "Obama" Administration support for the Bush Administration refusal to reconstruct Dick Cheney’s emails.

The Obama administration, siding with former President George W. Bush, is trying to kill a lawsuit that seeks to recover what could be millions of missing White House e-mails.

That claim is based on a January 21 motion to dismiss much of the National Security Archive suit against the Bush Administration, basically arguing that the only thing an NGO–and the Courts–can do is order the Administration to start restoring emails; they don’t have the grounds to force them to actually restore all the emails.

Check the date on that filing carefully.

January 21, of course, was Obama’s first full day in office, well before Eric Holder was sworn in as Attorney General. Heck, it was well before Obama’s team even got the email working at the White House themselves. And even, in a supreme bit of irony, it was the very same day when Obama signed an Executive Order saying incumbent Presidents, and not former ones, get to control the Presidential records of that former President.

January 21 was also just one day before the "Obama" Administration submitted a filing in the al-Haramain case that completely supported Bush’s unitary executive claims. Curiously, though, when the Obama Administration submitted another al-Haramain filing later in February, it adopted a significantly different strategy than they had in that January 22 filing. In other words, we know that the January 22 al-Haramain filing was indeed Dead-Enders submitting Bush’s strategy under Obama’s name; that strategy has since been changed.

We don’t–yet–have proof that the January 21 email filing was another case of a Dead-Ender submitting legal briefs in Obama’s name.  But there are two interesting details that suggest this might be the case. First, the ubiquitous Michael Hertz was–as he was on the al-Haramain case and just about everything else we’ve hated "Obama’s DOJ" doing–the senior official listed on the January 21 filing.

More interestingly, DOJ submitted a notice of appearance for Carlotta Poter Wells, a new lawyer to the government’s email team, about a week after this filing (though still before Holder was sworn in on Ferbuary 3). Why would you add a new lawyer to your legal team if you honestly planned on getting the suit dismissed?

We know the Dead-Enders were sneaking Bush legal strategy in under cover of inauguration week fun. I can’t prove that’s the case here. But I wouldn’t–yet–get worked up over a court filing submitted by Dead-Enders during inauguration week. 

7 replies
  1. BlueStateRedHead says:

    Dead enders will go out to he bleak job market for loyal Bushies…running at c. 28% employment IIRC. But those burrowers and civil service Monica Badling hires, what to do there?

    You may now know EW, but I though you deserves a response for posting at 4: am.
    And from two BayStaters, make that two Pats fans, probably.

  2. bmaz says:

    Yeah folks, the Motion to Dismiss filed Jan 21 was substantive and of sufficient length that it was most certainly researched, drafted, finalized and printed under the Bush DOJ and then filed by a dead ender.

    • R.H. Green says:

      At the end of the first week of the new administration, Maddog linked to an article from which claimed that the Obama admin was continuing the Bush admin policy re: al-Haramain. After reading the article twice, I concluded that this was not reportage, but stenography. The facts presented could just as easily lend themselves to an alternate interpretation. I commented back on this blog that I thought the story was spin, and offered the view that the data also supported the view that the Obama people had nothing to do with the case and that the Bush DoJ could be acting independently. What I got back was a ferocious rebuke from you that such an outlandish idea was thimble-brained nonsense. Why, no lawyer would dare do such a thing. Mary also presented a more reasoned critique, and between the two of you I accepted that perhaps I was being naive. Since then I’m keeping an open mind about it and watching the data as it comes in on either side. Marcy has taken the view that this is not outlandish, even invoking the term “dead-enders”. Just now you used that term too, and I’d like to know if you’ve now come to see things differently?

      • bmaz says:

        The term is an apt one. While I fully recognize the distinction Marcy is making, I think we still differ on the overall significance. If your question is “have I backed off on the thought that Obama is continuing abhorrent policy on the consolidated cases”, no, I have not. Not one bit. I think they could have stopped bad policy then, think they could now, and they have done nothing but refine their bad policy. Is it possible I am wrong, yes; time will tell. However, for the mean time, I will leave my bets where I placed them to start with.

        • R.H. Green says:

          Thanks for the reply. You may be correct about the Obama camp, and if so, its good that we keep our eye on it and develop a strategy for dealing with it. I’m not convinced yet, but as Mary has cogently argued, every day that goes by and clarifications are not made, as interventions do not occur (Haramain), matters look worse. So it helps for me to know where the players on our team stand; so again thanks for the clarification. Gotta go now.

  3. stryder says:

    I’m beginning to think that this whole administration is really a sleeping blue dog that’s just starting to become self aware

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