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All the vice president’s men.

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"All the vice president’s men."

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The Washington Post has posted the second in its four-part series on Dick Cheney. (Read part one here.) The most recent article develops in more detail the role of Alberto Gonzales as one of Cheney’s key enablers:

On June 8, 2004, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice and Secretary of State Colin L. Powell learned of the two-year-old torture memo for the first time from an article in The Washington Post. According to a former White House official with firsthand knowledge, they confronted Gonzales together in his office.

Rice “very angrily said there would be no more secret opinions on international and national security law,” the official said, adding that she threatened to take the matter to the president if Gonzales kept them out of the loop again. Powell remarked admiringly, as they emerged, that Rice dressed down the president’s lawyer “in full Nurse Ratched mode,” a reference to the ward chief of a mental hospital in the 1975 film “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”

Neither of them took their objections to Cheney, the official said, a much more dangerous course.

In another instance, the article recounts a meeting over the administration’s denial of due process to detainees. At the meeting, “Gonzales listened quietly as the Justice Department and his own staff lined up against [Cheney lawyer David] Addington. Then he decided in favor of Cheney’s lawyer.”

UPDATE: More from Atrios and Laura Rozen.

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