Spencer Ackerman is plowing through the joint IGs’ report on domestic surveillance that was just released. Among the conclusions he’s finding in the report: most leads secured by the secret surveillance program were determined not to have any connection to terrorism and — surprise!—then-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ July 2007 testimony to Congress about the surveillance program was “confusing, inaccurate, and … had the effect of misleading.”
In addition to detailing how the White House (read: Cheney) basically turned John Yoo into a one-man OLC, the report also explains how the White House (Cheney again?) directed the CIA to provide the factual underpinnings to the President’s “legal” authorizations. Again no surprise, but let’s note for the record that this whole operation was run from the very top.
Late Update: Another aspect of this also has Cheney’s fingerprints all over it: Once DOJ began objecting to the program (that is, once anyone beyond Yoo at DOJ learned of it), those objections were kept from President Bush by White House staff, at least according to Bush.
David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.