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Posts by Trevor Morrison

Trevor Morrison is the Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law and the Faculty Co-Chair of the Hertog Program on Law and National Security at Columbia Law School. He teaches and writes about constitutional law, federal courts, and national security law. A former law clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg of the United States Supreme Court, he served in the Justice Department's Office of the Solicitor General and Office of Legal Counsel before entering academia. More recently, for 2009 he served in the White House Counsel's Office as Associate Counsel to the President. Full bio »

The White Paper and Due Process

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Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 7:53 PM

The problems that Rick recently identified with how both the DOJ White Paper and its critics treat the concept of “imminence”  — specifically, that they are borrowing a concept generated in a domestic law context that depends on a set of institutions and structures that don’t exist in the international sphere, without acknowledging the problems . . .
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Letter in Support of Brennan Nomination

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Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 2:03 PM

I’m pleased to report that a group of former Obama Administration lawyers (including yours truly) has just submitted to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence a letter expressing our strong support for John Brennan’s nomination to be Director of the CIA.  As the letter states, in his current capacity as Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, . . .
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One Further Thought on CT Continuities and Discontinuities

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Sunday, November 11, 2012 at 12:03 PM

I appreciate Jack’s follow-up post on the larger picture of the Obama administration’s counterterrorism policies and their points of continuity with the Bush administration (though only the late Bush, as he properly underscores).  Jack and I agree on much more than we disagree on, including that evaluations of the Obama policies in this area depend in . . .
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Obama v. Bush on Counterterrorism Policy

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Sunday, November 11, 2012 at 1:18 AM

I agree with much of what Jack says in his recent post about the counterterrorism issues likely to face President Obama in his second term.  But there’s one aspect of how Jack frames the discussion that I disagree with somewhat.  Because a number of other commentators seem to use the same basic framing, I thought I’d . . .
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Thoughts on Hamdan II

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Friday, October 19, 2012 at 11:56 AM

Steve, Ben, Jack, and Bobby have already posted some excellent thoughts on the DC Circuit’s decision in Hamdan II.  I agree with many of them.  In particular, I think Jack is right to suggest that, wholly apart from its correctness as a legal matter, the decision might not be all that good for those Guantanamo detainees . . .
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A Bad Argument Against Rep. Smith’s Amendment to the NDAA

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Monday, May 14, 2012 at 11:51 PM

As Bobby noted previously, Rep. Adam Smith and others are proposing amendments to this year’s NDAA that would make certain changes to the detention-related provisions implemented by last year’s NDAA.  Among other things, the Smith Amendment would effectively prohibit the military detention of anyone arrested or captured within the United States.  Thus, in order for the USG . . .
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A Fair Question

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Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 3:26 PM

The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent poses an interesting question:  If elected, does Mitt Romney intend to revoke President Obama’s January 22, 2009 executive order on interrogation? The order largely restricts U.S. interrogators to the techniques authorized by the Army Field Manual.  It thus effectively prohibits the use of waterboarding and other “enhanced interrogation techniques” employed by . . .
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Greetings, and a Quick Thought on Brennan’s Speech

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Tuesday, May 1, 2012 at 2:23 PM

Very glad to have joined the Lawfare team.  I look forward to more sustained blogging once the spring grading season is over.  For now, I’ll offer just a quick thought on the speech John Brennan delivered yesterday, and on the larger public outreach campaign of which it is a part. Brennan is quite right that, even before . . .
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