A good advance on the state secrets story, from Greg Sargent over at the Plum Line.
Greg reports that the White House declined to tell him whether it would support a Democratic effort to roll back the use of the state secrets privilege.
It’s particularly awkward because the bill was introduced last year by then senators Hilary Clinton and Joe Biden, in response to President Bush’s use of the privilege. During the campaign, Obama criticized Bush for using the privilege too frequently.
Now the legislation, the State Secrets Protection Act, has been reintroduced by Senators Russ Feingold, Ted Kennedy, and Pat Leahy, in response to President Obama’s use of the privilege.
The Obama administration has invoked the privilege three times already, perhaps most controversially, as we’ve reported, in a warrantless wiretapping case. As Greg notes, Attorney General Eric Holder has ordered a comprehensive review of the use of the tool, and has promised a report in the “not too distant future.”