Cheney's Law [home page]



Bradford Berenson

From January 2001 to January 2003, Berenson served as an associate White House counsel under Alberto Gonzales. He recounts some of the significant events and decisions during his time there, for example, why White House lawyers decided to usurp the normal interagency process and have the president sign an executive order so that suspected terrorists would be tried in military tribunals.
photo of David Gergen

David Gergen

Gergen served as White House adviser to Presidents Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton. In the Ford administration he reported to Chief of Staff Dick Cheney, and he recalls how many of the young staffers -- including Cheney and himself -- chafed at the post-Watergate restrictions on the Ford presidency. Gergen tells FRONTLINE that he felt presidential power had been considerably strengthened in the decades that followed, but Dick Cheney never shared that view.
photo of Jack Goldsmith

Jack Goldsmith

Goldsmith, a law professor and rising star in conservative legal circles, joined the Bush administration and in 2003 became head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), the Justice Department office that advises the executive branch on the legality of proposed actions. He soon realized there were "big problems" with the legal foundations underpinning some of the war on terror's most important policies, including interrogation policies and the president's domestic surveillance program.
photo of Charlie Savage

Charlie Savage

Savage is the author of Takeover: The Return of the Imperial Presidency and the Subversion of American Democracy (2007) and a Washington correspondent for The Boston Globe. In 2007, he won the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for his series of articles on President Bush's use of signing statements to challenge legislation he disagrees with -- in particular, laws his administration viewed as limiting executive power.

home . introduction . watch online . interviews . themes . join the discussion
producer's chat . readings & links . site map . dvd & transcript . press reaction
teacher's guide . credits . privacy policy . journalistic guidelines . FRONTLINE series home . wgbh . pbs

posted october 16, 2007

FRONTLINE is a registered trademark of wgbh educational foundation.
main photograph © corbis, all rights reserved
web site copyright 1995-2014 WGBH educational foundation