John Yoo Fires Back

John Yoo has an op-ed in today’s Wall Street Journal. The piece is titled “My Gift to the Obama Presidency,” though I doubt many  in the Obama Administration will view it as much of a “gift.”  It begins:

Barack Obama may not realize it, but I may have just helped save his presidency. How? By winning a drawn-out fight to protect his powers as commander in chief to wage war and keep Americans safe. He sure didn’t make it easy.

The San Francisco Chronicle also reports on Yoo’s latest filing in Padilla v. Yoo.

In papers filed Friday with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, Yoo’s attorney dismissed the UC Berkeley law professor’s critics as uninformed academics or Democrats with political axes to grind.

One of his targets was Dawn Johnsen, an Indiana University law professor nominated by Obama in January 2009 to head the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, which advises the president on legal issues. . .

Johnsen, who worked in the Office of Legal Counsel under President Bill Clinton, has written that Yoo’s memos approving waterboarding and other painful interrogation practices violated legal standards and the office’s tradition of impartial advice.In a 2006 law review article, she proposed guidelines for the office that stressed its duty to stand up to the president. A group of lawyers supporting the suit against Yoo said the guidelines reflected a long-standing policy that he had violated.

In Friday’s filing, Yoo’s lawyer, Miguel Estrada, said Johnsen’s guidelines reflect “only partisan disagreement with the policies of the previous administration.”

Estrada also cited the Justice Department’s report last week concluding that Yoo committed no professional misconduct in his memos. He did not mention earlier findings by the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility that Yoo gave Bush one-sided advice.