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Whitehouse Hints at Bybee Impeachment

U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse appeared on MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Show last night to discuss the release of Bush-era Justice Department memos justifying waterboarding and other War on Terror misdeeds.

Just days after The New York Times called for the impeachment of federal judge Jay Bybee, who authored some of the memos during his time as an assistant attorney general, Whitehouse said "it is certainly possible that an impeachment inquiry is warranted."

But Whitehouse, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, suggested that Congress hold off while the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility completes its year-long inquiry into the memos. Whitehouse, who said the OPR report should be forthcoming in a matter of weeks, said he has every reason to believe it will be a "devastating opinion."

It will be interesting to see how aggressively Whitehouse and other Senate Democrats move on the matter, given the Obama Administration's reluctance to get involved in a full-blown search for the skeletons in the Bush-Cheney closet. And it will be interesting to see how Whitehouse, he of the ever-rising profile, makes use of the spotlight on judicial matters.

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