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Conyers Wants Yoo, Too

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich), head of the House Judiciary Committee, has asked John Yoo, former Bush administration attorney, to testify at a hearing on May 6 on his role as author of the now-infamous 2003 “torture memo.” The memo provided the Bush administration the legal wiggle-room to torture detainees during one stretch of the war on terror. That document was released publicly Apr. 1 amidst howls from Democrats and human rights groups. (Here’s (pdf) of the memo; here’s (pdf).)

In a requesting Yoo’s testimony, Conyers writes:

To the extent you have raised concerns with my staff that some questions on these matters might call for responses that you believe would be covered by executive privilege … I am confident such concerns can be effectively managed in a setting where you are voluntarily appearing before the committee.

No response yet from Yoo, now a law professor at the University of California, Berkeley. But if the torture-memo scribe fails to show on his own, Conyers implies that a subpoena will follow.

Should you continue to refuse to testify on a cooperative basis … the committee must of course proceed with its investigation and will be left with no option but to compel your appearance.

Yoo is the second big name Conyers has requested to appear this May. The committee chair requested last month that former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman (D) testify on the controversial circumstances surrounding his conviction and imprisonment on charges of bribery. (Siegelman contends — and other Democrats suspect — he was the target of a partisan witch-hunt originating with former White House senior advisor Karl Rove.)

Gonna be a fun May.

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