When Tierney Goes Will He Take Yoo With Him?


ASSOCIATED PRESS: The publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News is leaving as part of the transition to new ownership by company creditors. Brian Tierney will step down as chief executive on May 21, and as publisher when the sale closes in late June or early July, the company said. “It’s obviously with a certain sense of sadness when you see the folks around here that you’ve enjoyed working with,” Tierney, 53, said. However, he noted that the Inquirer has survived for more than 180 years. “The future is bright. I want to be cheering them on the sidelines,” he said. MORE

JOEL MATHIS: I’d say that John Yoo’s Inquirer column about Elena Kagan is fairly standard talking points stuff — hates the military, loves her ivory tower, mean to Clarence Thomas — except for one kind of weird point that he makes. He’s critical of Kagan’s now-famous decision to support efforts to keep military recruiters off the Harvard Law campus because of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Which is fine, except…MORE

PREVIOUSLY: Bush administration lawyers who paved the way for sleep deprivation and waterboarding of terrorism suspects exercised poor judgment but will not be referred to authorities for possible sanctions, according to a forthcoming ethics report, a legal source confirmed. The work of John C. Yoo and Jay S. Bybee, officials in the Bush Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, provided the basis for controversial interrogation strategies that critics likened to torture in the years after al-Qaeda’s 2001 terrorist strikes on American soil. The men and their OLC colleague, Steven G. Bradbury, became focal points of anger from Senate Democrats and civil liberties groups because their memos essentially insulated CIA interrogators and contractors from legal consequences for their roles in harsh questioning.The reasoning, set out in a series of secret memos only months after Sept. 11, 2001, prompted a multi-year investigation by the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility, which reviews the ethics of Justice lawyers. The legal source was not authorized to discuss the report’s conclusions and described them on the condition of anonymity. A draft report prepared at the end of the Bush years recommended that Yoo, now a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley, and Bybee, now a federal appeals court judge in Nevada, be referred to state disciplinary authorities for sanctions that could have included the revocation of their licenses to practice. But then-Attorney flamingyoo.jpgGeneral Michael B. Mukasey and Deputy Attorney General Mark R. Filip blasted the analysis in the draft and sent it back to the ethics office for more work. Meanwhile, the five-year statute of limitations on Yoo’s alleged conduct expired, raising doubts about whether a disciplinary referral would have had any bite. MORE

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