Bush Cousin Presides over Bush Administration 9/11 Case

By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on May 05, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Last week, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of a lawsuit by April Gallop against Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Richard Myers in which she alleged that the three conspired to carry out the 9/11 attack against the Pentagon.

While the result isn't surprising, one can't say the same for one of the judges that presided over the case:

Judge John Walker, first cousin to former President George W. Bush.

According to William Veale, attorney for April Gallop, Bush Administration officials launched the 9/11 attacks in order to "create a political atmosphere in which they could pursue domestic and international policy objectives" and so that they could "conceal the misallocation of $2.3 trillion in congressional appropriations to the Department of Defense."

Agreeing with the lower court, the appellate court dismissed the lawsuit, citing "unsubstantial and inconsistent allegations" along with blatant frivolity.

William Veale and April Gallop disagree, and further contend that Judge John Walker should have recused himself as requested at the outset.

Conspiracy theories aside, William Veale isn't necessarily wrong in this contention.

Federal statutes require judges to recuse themselves when their "impartiality might reasonably be questioned" or if they have a "personal bias concerning a party."

Former President Bush wasn't a party to the lawsuit, but it's not exactly difficult to see how one would question whether Judge John Walker could be impartial given that the lawsuit directly impacts the legacy of his cousin.

Even so, it's unlikely that a recusal would have altered the outcome.

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