Cheney and Power

Sidney Blumenthal looks at Dick Cheney’s career in the various halls of power.

Elected to the House of Representatives in 1978, Dick Cheney became the Republican leader on the House Intelligence Committee, where he consistently fought congressional oversight and limits on presidential authority. When Congress investigated the Iran-Contra scandal (the creation of an illegal, privately funded, offshore US foreign policy) in 1986, Cheney was the crucial administration defender. At every turn, he blocked the Democrats and prevented them from questioning vice-president Bush.

Under Cheney’s leadership, not a single House Republican signed the special investigating committee’s final report charging “secrecy, deception and disdain for law.” Instead, the Republicans issued their own report claiming there had been no major wrongdoing.