News+and+politics religion philosophy the cynic librarian: Bush@War Listening to You and Me: Scholars Duke It Out

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Bush@War Listening to You and Me: Scholars Duke It Out

Three very interesting discussions of the controversial subject of Bush's wiretapping, eavesdropping, reading emails, etc. over at the University of Chicago Law School Blog. I want to take a look at the arguments and parse out the legal jargon from the waste and see if I can get a sense of who's right/wrong on this.

At a glance, sunstein seems to make a strong case for Bush's interpretation of the Congressional resolution that allowed him to invade Afghanistan.

One sentence that piques my interest, picked after cursory reading, is the following by sunstein:

What about the Fourth Amendment? It turns out that the President has a plausible claim here as well (again see Orin Kerr's post for helpful discussion) -- not necessarily decisive, but plausible. The cases do not clearly support the view that when monitoring (a) an international call involving (b) someone with an Al Qaeda connection (c) to or from the United States, the President must, (d) under post-9/11 conditions, obtain a warrant. (The AUMF is helpful to the President here.) But to the extent that the Fourth Amendment claim is strong, there is reason to interpret the AUMF narrowly, so as to avoid that question, and also to interpret FISI broadly, also to avoid the Fourth Amendment question. On the other hand, the President's claim of inherent authority, if plausible, raises doubts about this approach.

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