Yesterday, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said that when it came to the Bush administration’s illegal torture program, “those who devised the policies…should not be prosecuted.” Today, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs confirmed that these officials would not be “held accountable”:
CNN’S ED HENRY: Just so I understand, you’re saying the people in the CIA who followed through on what they were told was legal, they should not be prosecuted? But why not the Bush administration lawyers who, in the eyes of a lot of your supporters on the left, twisted the law, why are they not being held accountable?
GIBBS: The president is focused on looking forward. That’s why.
When he released the torture memos last week, President Obama reaffirmed, I believe strongly in transparency and accountability,” and repeated that “the United States is a nation of laws.”