Cheney’s Obsession With Secrecy

Vice-president Dick Cheney has a well-known penchant for secrecy. Whether it’s the energy task force he headed or his attempts to hide the facts about his shooting a friend on a hunting trip.

Now he is trying to suppress a congressional investigation into the administration’s wiretapping affair. The Republican chairman of the senate Judiciary committee, Arlen Spector is accusing the VP of interferring with the oversight responsibilities of congress. In a letter to Cheney, Spector said…

“I was surprised, to say the least, that you sought to influence, really determine, the action of the committee without calling me first, or at least calling me at some point.”

Spector said Cheney had lobbied Republicans to oppose the holding of any hearing, even a closed one. He argued that the telecommunications companies were “not to provide any information to the committee as they were prohibited from disclosing classified information.”

These admonitions were given in advance of the hearings and represent a kind of executive prior restraint since there was no evidence that the companies intended to disclose anything of a classified nature. The administration has been working hard to keep the facts surrounding their unlawful eavesdropping from seeing the light of day. They have even cut off Justice Department investigations by refusing to grant JD attorneys the necessary security clearances to conduct their investigation.

Is this the behavior of a White House that has nothing to hide?


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