Bench Memos

NRO’s home for judicial news and analysis.

Re: Federalist Society D.C. Event on Executive Privilege


I think and hope that you will find yesterday’s panel discussion of the topic “Congressional Oversight vs. Executive Privilege” (which I moderated) interesting and insightful.  The discussion aired live on C-SPAN.  The audio is available here on the Federalist Society’s website (and the video will also be available there soon). 

The panel featured (in order of presentation) Walter Dellinger, head of OLC for three years in the Clinton Administration; Dr. Louis Fisher of the Law Library of the Library of Congress; Douglas R. Cox, former principal deputy in the Office of Legal Counsel in the Bush 41 administration; and Chris Bartolomucci, associate White House counsel in the Bush 43 administration and a former staffer to the Senate Whitewater Committee.

I was particularly struck by how much I agreed with Walter Dellinger’s comments and insights.  (My degree of concurrence in what Doug Cox and Chris Bartolomucci had to say was similarly high, but less surprising to me.)  Among other things, Walter strongly defended the public interest in executive-branch confidentiality, and he urged congressional opponents of this Administration’s policies to express their opposition openly, but not to seek to paralyze executive-branch operations through onerous and backwards-looking demands for confidential executive-branch materials.  Let’s hope his good sense prevails. 

Tags: Whelan


Subscribe to National Review