Memo Regarding Varieties of Executive Privilege

Aziz Huq discusses the different types of executive privilege in use today. Specifically, "presidential communications privilege," the "deliberative process privilege," attorney-client privilege, and claims of secrecy on grounds of national security are considered.

January 31, 2007

Aziz Huq reviews the varieties of executive privilege – the presidential
communication privilege, deliberative process privilege, attorney-client
privilege, and national-security related privilege – and their historical
applications.  He demonstrates that each
privilege can be overcome if there is substantial reason, and, despite recent
handling of national-security related issues, they, too, are subject to
congressional oversight.  The memo
attests to the danger in a lack of congressional pressure on privilege claims relating
to national security.

Mr. Huq is counsel in several
cases concerning detention and national security policy, including Omar v.
and Munaf v. Geren, challenges to US citizen's detention in
 He has advised and spoken before
legislators on issues related to the Separation of Powers, excessive secrecy,
and illegal detention.  His book with
Fritz Schwarz, Unchecked and
Unbalanced: Presidential Power In A Time of Terror
(New Press),
was published in 2007, and will be reissued in paperback in spring 2008.  He is a frequent contributor to The Nation,
the American Prospect, the New York Law Journal and Huffington
.  His articles have also
appeared in the Washington Post, the New Republic,
Democracy Journal, TomPaine, and Colorlines.