Former #Bush administration #lawyer John Yoo, whose views may be of strictly academic and ironical interest these days, offered the Obama administration some legal support for the coming attack on Syria Thursday.
Now a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley, Yoo said on a conference call organized by the Federalist Society that Obama can strike at Syria without a congressional green light.
"The Constitution does not set out clearly that Congress must give approval first before the president uses force abroad," Yoo said.
As a key member of the Bush Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, Yoo adopted an aggressive interpretation of executive branch wartime authority. His work included, most famously, what critics later came to call the "torture memos" authorizing the use of harsh interrogation techniques. This is the same John Yoo whose legal work Obama repudiated the moment he entered the White House.
But now, someone has changed, and it doesn't appear to be Professor Yoo.
Yoo joined with Saikrishna Prakash, a professor at the University of Virginia Law School, on the call, though they offered competing perspectives.