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John Yoo Hired as Monthly Columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer

Posted May 12, 2009 1:45 PM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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John Yoo, under fire for writing legal memos approving harsh interrogation techniques for terrorism suspects, will now try his hand at writing on a regular basis for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Yoo was hired as a monthly Inquirer columnist late last year, the Philadelphia Daily News reports. The Inquirer's editorial page editor, Harold Jackson, told the Daily News about the qualities that make Yoo a good columnist: “He's a Philadelphian, and very knowledgeable about the legal subjects he discusses in his commentaries. Our readers have been able to get directly from Mr. Yoo his thoughts on a number of subjects concerning law and the courts, including measures taken by the White House post-9/11. That has promoted further discourse, which is the objective of newspaper commentary.”

Yoo is a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley. He wrote the memos while working at the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, a fact omitted in the bio that runs with his columns, the Philadelphia Weekly reports. Jackson says Inquirer readers are familiar with Yoo’s background—and many of them aren’t happy.

“We get a lot of e-mails—a lot of people have threatened to cancel their subscriptions,” Jackson told Philadelphia Weekly.

The Wall Street Journal Law Blog has also covered the controversy over Yoo's new gig.


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