Saturday, February 20, 2010
President Obama’s Justice Department ruled Friday that the lawyers who authorized CIA interrogators to use illegal and unconstitutional waterboarding are not guilty of professional misconduct. However, the ruling did admit the lawyers showed “poor judgment.”
Although the Obama administration abolished the technique, the Justice Department was responsible for deciding if those who worked for former President George W. Bush should be punished. An initial review concluded that two former government lawyers, John Yoo and Jay Bybee, had committed professional misconduct, but Assistant Deputy Attorney General David Margolis disagreed after re-examining the case.
However, Margolis was quick to note that “This decision should not be viewed as an endorsement of the legal work that underlies those memorandum.” Equally stunning, the Obama Justice Department did not recommend either Yoo or Bybee lose their law licenses — thus allowing them to continue to practice law.