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Senate Democrats to question Roberts on DOJ torture memo

[JURIST] US Senator Patrick Leahy [official website], ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Monday that the committee's Democrats intend to question Supreme Court nominee John Roberts [JURIST news archive] about a Justice Department memo that some say led to torture at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison [JURIST news archive] and in Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive]. The Bybee memorandum [PDF text], authored by then-Assistant Attorney General and current federal Judge Jay Bybee, argued that the president has the power to issue orders that violate the Geneva Conventions [text] and other international and domestic laws prohibiting torture, though the White House has said that the memo's advice was never followed [JURIST report]. Leahy said that he will ask Roberts about the Bybee memo because it is relevant to "the question of to what area - if any - can a president be considered above the law." AP has more.

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