Vice Versus

Friday, September 12, 2008


Open government advocates are expressing concern that Vice President Dick Cheney may take official documents with him when he leaves office. Chief Counsel for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Anne Weismann, explains the stakes if the written record of the Cheney years is lost to history.
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Comments [9]

Matt from Arlington, VA

Constitution Day is an excellent time to set aside this most reliable set of cudgels used to attack the President and Vice President and read the Constitution. From the coverage of this issue there should be a wave of enlightenment on September 18th when it is realized that the Vice President is not part of the Legislative or Executive Branch, but is attached to the Legislative branch by the virtue of being the President of the Senate. I eagerly await OTM's correction.

Sep. 19 2008 04:20 PM
Chris Gray from New Haven, CT

I have to say, Jack is dead right to call out Berger and he could probably make a decent case against much higher ups of the Clinton Administration.

History seems to confirm that each successive administration builds upon the transgressions of those previous in the aggregation of unconstitutional authority, whether Democratic or Republican.

Sep. 19 2008 01:22 AM
Remi Moncel from Washington, D.C.

This, in my view, constitutes the latest example of an administration with little concern over the integrity or boundaries of its executive authority.

CONSTITUTION DAY is tomorrow (Wed Sep. 17) and with the election just over seven weeks away, the Constitution is virtually absent of candidates' speeches, remarks, platforms and forums. For this reason, a broad and diverse coalition of organizations from across the political spectrum (see advisory, at, including Common Cause, Human Rights Watch and Rutherford Institute, have urged the presidential candidates to present their views on constitutional issues on September 17.

Senator Russ Feingold's September 16 hearing on the eve of Constitution Day goes in the same direction by discussing checks and balances and the separation of powers with a view to "restoring the rule of law" in the next administration and Congress.

The Bush administration's abuses of executive power have been exposed and denounced by groups and individuals across the political spectrum. Do they now constitute a precedent for the next President to follow? This question must be answered by the presidential candidates and Constitution Day is the perfect time for them to do so. We need to find out how the candidates would exert their executive authority as President before the election rather than learning it the hard way.

Remi Moncel, World Resources Institute

Sep. 16 2008 05:06 PM
Archivist from Illinois

Disturbing story, but alas not very surprising. . .

Is there are credence to the rumors that numerous document destruction trucks are rumbling away from the VP's residence in Naval Observatory? I heard John Dean make this assertion at the Society of American Archivist's Meeting in San Francisco several weeks ago. Have the media done any due diligence on this issue. Is the VP actually destroying the evidence as we speak?

Sep. 15 2008 11:11 AM
John R from Virginia

Why would he wait till he leaves office to remove "vital" records? Do you think anyone inventories the tons of e-mails and other correspondence that he has every day. Do you think that paper records are all that is available anymore? You are afraid of fear, not reality.

Sep. 15 2008 08:28 AM
Jack from Chicago

I thought Sandy Berger established precedence here. You can take as many documents from the WH as you can fit in your pants.

Sep. 14 2008 10:29 PM
Matt from Arlington, VA

CREW, OTM, the media and historians need to effectively address David Addington's assertion that the VPOTUS is not a member of the legislative or executive branch by virtue of the constitution. This fundamental hurdle must be overcome before any legal actions or watchdogging based on assertions of executive branch membership can be considered newsworthy. This segment mentions, but too quickly dismisses the legal issue at stake in this lawsuit. A good faith effort to understand the arguments on both sides would put OTM ahead of the curve and lead to some prescient reporting on the administration. Without that good faith effort reporting on this issue lacks the due diligence needed for the story to gain the traction necessary to compel congressional action to correct the ambiguity of the VPOTUS in our constitutional system.

Sep. 13 2008 12:01 PM
Not So Much from Philly

Why bother? The fire in the VP's office must have destroyed what you are looking for.

Sep. 12 2008 11:06 PM
Craig Ellisor from Omaha

Simply outrageous! We all know he's evil, we just may never know the extent of it. Unless he's really, really guilty, he's not doing his legacy any favors.

Sep. 12 2008 09:23 PM

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