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Obama Fails on Transparency

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Contact: press@ccrjustice.org

February 9, 2009, New York – In response to the position Obama’s Justice Department took today in a key rendition case brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, Mohamed et al v. Jeppesen Dataplan, Inc., Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) Executive Director Vincent Warren issued the following statement:

“I could not be more disappointed: In its first real case, the Obama administration has chosen to continue the Bush administration’s policy of secrecy before justice despite all the uplifting rhetoric about transparency. The Bush administration invoked the State Secrets privilege more than any other administration in history to keep embarrassing cases out of court. The question is, when will Obama roll back the illegal expansion of executive power he has inherited?”

CCR represents Canadian rendition victim Maher Arar, whose appeal before the full Second Circuit is pending. For more information on the State Secrets privilege, see CCR's State Secrets FAQ page.

The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Founded in 1966 by attorneys who represented civil rights movements in the South, CCR is a non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.