Key Obama Appointee Withdraws

Few people had ever heard of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel until the Bush administration, when its lawyers authorized waterboarding. Now, President Obama’s pick to head the office, Dawn Johnsen, has withdrawn from consideration after Senate Republicans blocked a vote for months. Republicans didn’t take kindly to Johnsen’s strong criticism of the Bush administration’s terror policies and prevented the Senate from ever voting on her nomination, even after the Senate Judiciary Committee recommended her confirmation.