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David Cole

Legal Affairs Correspondent

David Cole, national legal director of the ACLU, is legal affairs correspondent for The Nation and a professor at Georgetown University Law Center. He is the author, most recently, of Engines of Liberty: The Power of Citizen Activists to Make Constitutional Law (April 2016).

  • Law October 8, 2006

    Sanctioning Lawlessness

    What's more important to Congress: America's standing in the world and the rule of law, or partisan advantage in the midterm elections?

    David Cole

  • Politics September 8, 2006

    Knock on Wood

    The Bush Administration's illegitimate use of renditions, disappearances, torture and an illegal war has fostered the growth of a loose-knit global band of fanatics willing to do unspeakable violence against us.

    David Cole

  • Law July 14, 2006

    The ‘Kennedy Court’

    By casting the decisive vote in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld and other contentious disputes, Justice Anthony Kennedy plays a crucial role in a Supreme Court that may soon veer off in an extreme rightward direction.

    David Cole

  • Society April 27, 2006

    Lost in Translation

    Good translators speak for others, not for themselves. So why is a translator for Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman being prosecuted as a co-conspirator?

    David Cole

  • Campaigns and Elections March 16, 2006

    Patriot Act Post-Mortem

    The failure of a complaisant, Republican-controlled Congress to enact meaningful changes to the Patriot Act means that midterm elections are the only true path to reform.

    David Cole

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  • Law February 23, 2006

    Tortured Exceptionalism

    Despite a recent federal district court ruling, the prohibition on torture knows no geographical boundaries and applies to all, no matter what passport they hold--even Americans.

    David Cole

  • February 23, 2006



    New York City

    David Cole and Our Readers

  • Law February 2, 2006

    NSA Spying Myths

    The Bush Administration has propagated five myths in its current campaign to rationalize its illegal domestic spying program.

    David Cole

  • Political Figures December 21, 2005

    The Emperor’s Powers

    The Bush Administration believes it can ignore the rule of law--in pursuit of torture, Pentagon surveillance of antiwar groups and now, domestic spying. We must continue to insist that in a democracy, the rule of law cannot be ignored.

    David Cole

  • Criminal Justice December 1, 2005

    Post-9/11 Shell Game

    José Padilla will never be charged, and never have his day in court.

    David Cole