In a letter sent last Friday to Leahy and House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.), White House counsel Fred F. Fielding said that the privacy of the documents must be respected to ensure that presidential advisers feel free to provide "candid and unfettered advice."
In other words, what good are political blackmail and dirty tricks if everybody knows about them?
Earlier this year, when sponsoring the Open Government Act of 2007, our learned and erudite constitutional scholar and Senate Judiciary Committee member Senator John Cornyn posted this on his website regarding the need for open government.
Open government is one of the most basic requirements of any healthy democracy. It allows for taxpayers to see where their money is going; it permits the honest exchange of information that ensures government accountability; and it upholds the ideal that government never rules without the consent of the people......
Our government is based not on the need to know, but upon the fundamental right to know.
But now that his pals in the White House are directly defying a subpoena issued by his own committee, the junior senator seems a little more sanguine about the whole thing.
"Let's go ahead and have the courts decide it, and we'll honor whatever they decide," said Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) Thursday afternoon on CNN's Situation Room program.
Oh, yeah, because they've never been wrong.