Senate Confirms Drone Memo Author as Appeals Court Judge

Vote Split Along Party Lines

After yesterday‘s preliminary approval vote, the Senate today gave final confirmation to David Barron, author of the Barron Memo on drone strikes, as a judge in the 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals.

Today’s vote was 53-45, and pretty much identical to yesterdays, split nearly 100% along party lines, with Sens. Joe Manchin (D – WV) and Mary Landrieu (D – LA) joining the “no” votes.

The secret Barron Memo has been cited by the Obama Administration as providing them a legal justification for assassinating US citizens with drones, and without trials. The memo remains classified, but the Justice Department has promised to release a redacted version eventually, per court order.

The Justice Department has confirmed several American citizens were killed on the basis of Barron’s legal advice. Though some Republicans, like Sen. Rand Paul
(R – KY), objected to his confirmation on the basis of those killings, many also complained he was too left-leaning.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of