Steve Soto Asks “Why Does Cheney Still Have Access To Secrets?”

Brian Zick

Steve also asks: If the OVP now argues that it is not bound by executive branch rules, then how can the OVP argue that it is covered by executive privilege?If the OVP is not entirely an Executive Branch entity, does this not undermine its legal defense in the Cheney Energy Task Force case?IF the OVP argues that it is not bound by executive branch rules governing the handling of classified information, then why hasn’t President Bush pulled the security clearances of Cheney and all his staff?How can Congress and the American people have confidence that the Bush Administration is protecting our national security and our classified assets and secrets as long as the OVP exempts itself from protecting those secrets and those assets? (…) If Cheney argues that he is really also a member of the Legislative Branch when it comes to classified information, then why doesn’t the House and Senate Intelligence committees have the same access to sensitive information and lack of accountability that the OVP does? Does this not undermine any administration claim that Congress cannot be trusted with classified information, and cripple their efforts to limit Congress’s access to sensitive information?If Cheney was so quick to retaliate against the National Archives for questioning his assertion that he was exempt from accountability and review on his handling of classified information, does this not help Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame prove the allegations in their civil case against the Administration?Why does the Director of National Intelligence still circulate classified information to the OVP if he has no independent assurance that such information is being protected and not misused?

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