Steven Gill Bradbury

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Steven Gill Bradbury is a conservative lawyer, who began his legal career as a clerk for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Bradford earned his bachelor's degree from Stanford University and his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School. Bradford is or has been a member of the Federalist Society.

On June 23, 2005, President George W. Bush nominated him to be Assistant Attorney General and head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC).

On January 19, 2006, Mr. Bradbury, as acting head of the OLC, wrote a memo to the Senate which attempted to justify the NSA's warrantless eavesdropping program. A few weeks later, Newsweek magazine reported that he testified at a closed-door session of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and said that the President could order the assassination of an Al-Qaeda suspect on U.S. territory. Although several other officials repudiated that opinion during a later, open session.

On March 15, 2005, Mr. Bradbury issued an opinion that it is legal for federal agencies to feed TV stations prepackaged news stories that do not disclose the government's role in producing them. (Source: Washington Post)

On the issue of medical privacy, Mr. Bradbury wrote a bizarre opinion that sharply limits the governments ability to prosecute people who misuse medical records in violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. According to the New York Times (June 7, 2005) -

"A new ruling by the Justice Department sharply limits the government's ability to prosecute people for criminal violations of the law that protects the privacy of medical records. The criminal penalties, the department said, apply to insurers, doctors, hospitals and other providers - but not necessarily their employees or outsiders who steal personal health data. In short, the department said, people who work for an entity covered by the federal privacy law are not automatically covered by that law and may not be subject to its criminal penalties ..."

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