by Andrew

"[I]f you genuinely believe in the rule of law, you can't invoke political expediency as a guide to whether possible crimes should be investigated and prosecuted. And the fact that the Attorney-General has decided to go forward should be seen as very positive sign, because it shows that he is willing to fulfill his constitutional responsibilities even if it is politically inconvenient for the president who appointed him. I have no doubt that the president would prefer to "look forward," because an investigation and/or prosecution will drive both the CIA and the right-wing media types crazy and because he's got enough alligators to wrestle with already. But he also promised us that he would end the politicization of the Department of Justice that his predecessor practiced, and Holder's decision, however inconvenient for Obama, is a reassuring sign that there is still life in the U.S. Constitution," - Stephen Walt.

Compare and contrast with once-libertarian Charles Murray, who sees only culture war politics as the salient issue:

Nothing but the Pauline Kael syndrome can explain the political idiocy of letting Attorney General Eric Holder go after the interrogators.

Nothing but the rule of law, that is. Remember when that mattered to conservatives? The GOP could think of nothing else when impeaching a president for perjury in a civil trial. But secretly committing war crimes and rigging the legal system to give you a golden shield from prosecution for torture? We should all stand up and applaud illegality, defend the politicians who broke the law and authorized the torture, abuse and murder of prisoners of war. And you wonder why conservatism as it is currently exemplified disgusts me.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.