Rove Invoved In Firing Of Attorneys General

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  • #1
edward
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The controversy of the firing of a number of Attorneys General by Bush's boy, Alberto Gonzales, has brought a familiar face into the picture.

WASHINGTON - The White House acknowledged on Sunday that presidential adviser Karl Rove served as a conduit for complaints to the Justice Department about federal prosecutors who were later fired for what critics charge were partisan political reasons.

House investigators on Sunday declared their intention to question Rove about any role he may have played in the firings.

http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwashington/16884148.htm

It is time for the for the Attorney General to quit playing politics. For that matter it is time for Gonzales to go and take Rove with him.
 

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  • #2
Ivan Seeking
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This whole thing exploded today.

Not only did they consider firing all 90 attorneys [ala Miers], they also wished to use[or suggested using] a provision of the Patriot Act to bypass Congressional approval of the new attorneys!
http://media.pbs.org/ramgen/newshour/expansion/2007/03/13/20070313_attorneys28.rm?altplay=20070313_attorneys28.rm [Broken]
or
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/

For now the question is: Who intentionally lied to Congress?

Even the Repubicans are ticked off about this.
 
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  • #3
denverdoc
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Mr insecticide may have dodged one sprayer spritz with the valerie plain affair, somewhere somehow this cockroach going to die, and if I were in charge of the senate or house coming into a big election, he'd be the first to die.
 
  • #4
Astronuc
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‘Loyalty’ to Bush and Gonzales Was Factor in Prosecutors’ Firings, E-Mail Shows :bugeye:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/14/washington/14justice.html
WASHINGTON, March 13 — Late in the afternoon on Dec. 4, a deputy to Harriet E. Miers, then the White House counsel and one of President Bush’s most trusted aides, sent a two-line e-mail message to a top Justice Department aide. “We’re a go,” it said, approving a long-brewing plan to remove seven federal prosecutors considered weak or not team players.

The message, from William K. Kelley of the White House counsel’s office to D. Kyle Sampson, the chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, put in motion a plan to fire United States attorneys that had been hatched 22 months earlier by Ms. Miers. Three days later, the seven prosecutors were summarily dismissed. An eighth had been forced out in the summer.

The documents provided by the Justice Department add some new details to the chronicle of the fired prosecutors but leave many critical questions unanswered, including the nature of discussions inside the White House and the level of knowledge and involvement by the president and his closest political aide, Karl Rove.

The White House said Monday that Mr. Bush and Mr. Rove had raised concerns about lax voter fraud prosecutions with the Justice Department. And several of the fired attorneys told Congress last week that some lawmakers had questioned them about corruption investigations, inquiries the prosecutors considered inappropriate. The documents do not specifically mention either topic.

. . . . continued
Geez - what's wrong with this picture. Echoes of John Mitchell and Nixon.

Seems like the Whitehouse enemies list is back. :rolleyes:
 
  • #5
Ivan Seeking
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I think Bush all but said it this morning while in Mexico: Heck of a job, Brownie.

Gonzales was definitely at the top of my list of people who should never have power; led only by Rummy, Cheney, and Bush.
 
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  • #6
edward
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This whole thing exploded today.

Not only did they consider firing all 90 attorneys [ala Miers], they also wished to use[or suggested using] a provision of the Patriot Act to bypass Congressional approval of the new attorneys!
http://media.pbs.org/ramgen/newshour/expansion/2007/03/13/20070313_attorneys28.rm?altplay=20070313_attorneys28.rm [Broken]
or
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/

For now the question is: Who intentionally lied to Congress?

Even the Repubicans are ticked off about this.

I am sure Gonzales intended to do the right thing.:rolleyes: This administration seems to have a barrel with no bottom. Everytime I begin to think that they can't go any lower, they do.

http://thinkprogress.org/2007/03/13/gonzales-lies/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/08/AR2007020801867.html
 
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  • #7
edward
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All of this makes me wonder who specifically is coming up with all of this incredulous legislation in and added to the Patriot Act. There is definite evidence a lot of it is more involved with politics, and maintaining an almost dynasty like control over the country, than it is about security.

Senate Judiciary ranking member Arlen Specter, R-Pa., Tuesday said he would support a bid to reverse a provision in the USA PATRIOT Act that helped facilitate what Democrats charge was the improper dismissal of seven U.S. attorneys.

Denying an accusation by Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., that the provision was "slipped into the PATRIOT Act in the dead of night" on his watch, Specter said he discovered it recently and agreed "We ought to change it back to what it was."

The provision authorizes the attorney general to appoint interim U.S. attorneys for indefinite periods.

http://www.govexec.com/dailyfed/0207/020707cdam1.htm
 
  • #8
Ivan Seeking
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He [Gonzales] is toast. I'd be surprised if he lasted another week... or even this one.

How could we know how low they had sunk with a rubber stamp congress? With legitimate oversight, it ain't taking long, eh?
 
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  • #9
BobG
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How it fits into the big picture is more worrying than the firings, themselves.

Between the firing of US Attorneys (and trashing their reputation, to boot) and releasing Plame's name to trash someone who refuted their assessment of Iraq, the idea of the trusting the administration to conduct electronic surveillance without a warrant is put into a whole new light. The balance tips from the 'remote possibility' that the surveillance plan could be abused to 'how likely is it' that the administration would use electronic surveillance to obtain information to trash a political opponent.

These are exactly the kind of things that make one cherish the idea of warrants approved by an independent source.
 
  • #10
Ivan Seeking
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This is all such a huge relief. FINALLY some oversight! Now, if they just follow through as they should...
 
  • #11
SticksandStones
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He [Gonzales] is toast. I'd be surprised if he lasted another week... or even this one.

How could we know how low they had sunk with a rubber stamp congress? With legitimate oversight, it ain't taking long, eh?

It's a shame we will never see impeachment for Bush and Cheney though.
 
  • #12
Ivan Seeking
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I don't think its out of the question yet. Promises made are only binding based on the information known at the time. There is no doubt in my mind that there is plenty of dirt, but can Congress get the proof that it needs in order to act...?

Again, even though it would be a terrible thing to put this country through, esp now, I think there is a greater imperitive - the integrity of the Constitution. The actions of this administration cannot be allowed to stand as precedence for future administrations.
 
  • #13
denverdoc
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i totally agree--it would be hugely cathartic to throw these asses out on the rear. Don't think it will happen. Their accomplishments? None. Lots of harm.
JS
 
  • #14
Astronuc
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New E-Mail Gives Details on Attorney Dismissals
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/20/washington/20documents.html

WASHINGTON, March 19 — Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales was “extremely upset” that his deputy told Congress last month that a federal prosecutor had been fired for no reason, according to e-mail released Monday by the Justice Department.

Mr. Gonzales believed that the prosecutor, H. E. Cummins III, the United States attorney for Arkansas, was dismissed for performance reasons, the e-mail suggested. But his deputy, Paul J. McNulty, testified that Mr. Cummins had been replaced to create a vacancy for J. Timothy Griffin, a political ally of the White House political adviser Karl Rove.

The e-mail messages, among more than 3,000 released by the Justice Department, reflect the tensions at the highest levels of the agency as officials tried to contain the political brushfire set off by the dismissals of eight federal prosecutors last year.
Hmmm. Well, it's not really a surprise, is it? :yuck:
 
  • #15
edward
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I don't think Gonzales is behind all of this. He is a part of it, but is just another pawn of the Bush Administration. Now if we could just find out who is really behind that curtain pulling on the ropes we would have something.
 
  • #16
Astronuc
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Or Gonzalez is a team player. Bush, Cheney, Rove, et al certainly have an agenda, and so do many others.
 
  • #17
turbo
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I don't think Gonzales is behind all of this. He is a part of it, but is just another pawn of the Bush Administration. Now if we could just find out who is really behind that curtain pulling on the ropes we would have something.
I don't believe he's the mastermind behind the politicization of the Justice Department, but he certainly is a willing player. This whole mess has Rove's stink all over it. It's time that Leahy started issuing subpoenas and forcing sworn testimony. It's also time that Congress started showing no respect for the administration's chain of command and force testimony from the REAL players. The Bushies seem willing to dump Gonzales now, in hopes that Congress will close the book on this political corruption of our justice department. That must not be allowed to happen.
 
  • #18
Ivan Seeking
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Senate revokes Bush's authority to replace attorneys

WASHINGTON: The Senate voted overwhelmingly today to revoke the authority it granted the Bush administration last year to name federal prosecutors without Senate confirmation.

By a vote of 94 to 2, the Senate restored the previous system for naming federal prosecutors. Under that system, when a vacancy occurred, the attorney general was allowed to name an interim United States attorney to serve for up to 120 days while the administration submitted a nominee for permanent appointment to the Senate. If a nominee is not confirmed within that period, the federal district court could then name a replacement.

Today's vote undid language in the USA Patriot Act that had allowed the White House to bypass the Senate in naming prosecutors. [continued]
http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/03/20/news/web-0320justicecnd2.php

According to Bill Maher, the joke going around Washington is that nobody actually read the patriot act. I can believe it! This nonsense is exactly the sort of abuse of power that us Bush haters have been ranting about. Here we have a smoking gun example of how this fetish for anti-terror has led to some very bad decisions.

They're certainly not all I would hope for in government, but thank goodness we have the Democrats back in power.
 
  • #19
denverdoc
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Given the comments of George himself today, accept a deal or else, this may be the Rubicon. Pelosi et al may get just pissed off enuf to change views on inpeachment. If GWB, becoming ever more strident and "misunderstood", really wants to do a lame duck kamikaze, ths would be it. Just hoping the current milquetoast of the Democratic party, doesn't cave as it seems to be doing by giving Bush another installment on the warchest while mouthing dissent.
 
  • #20
Ivan Seeking
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Yep, Bush seems to be worried.

I haven't heard anyone mention obstruction of justice, yet.
 
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  • #21
verdigris
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If they had put Clinton in jail for lying to Congress about Lewinsky then Bush and others wouldn't be so corrupt.Ford should have locked up Nixon too
but Nixon was his friend so he didn't and used the excuse that the country had to bury the past and move on.We need a leader like Blair or Bush - who both lied about the Weapons Saddam had - to be locked up to set an example for the future.
 
  • #22
turbo
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The House Judiciary Committee has voted without dissent to subpoena Bush administration aides in regard to the firing of federal prosecutors. Bush is trying to stonewall Congress, offering "interviews" with no oaths administered and no transcripts, so that the aides can't be prosecuted for perjury when they lie to our elected representatives. Pelosi should start doing her job, and draft articles of impeachment.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070321/ap_on_go_pr_wh/fired_prosecutors;_ylt=AmczUn3ZYlgYYoBW1fd.Mf6s0NUE [Broken]
 
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  • #23
BobG
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The House Judiciary Committee has voted without dissent to subpoena Bush administration aides in regard to the firing of federal prosecutors. Bush is trying to stonewall Congress, offering "interviews" with no oaths administered and no transcripts, so that the aides can't be prosecuted for perjury when they lie to our elected representatives. Pelosi should start doing her job, and draft articles of impeachment.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070321/ap_on_go_pr_wh/fired_prosecutors;_ylt=AmczUn3ZYlgYYoBW1fd.Mf6s0NUE [Broken]

AP said:
The full Judiciary Committee would authorize the subpoenas if Chairman John Conyers (news, bio, voting record) of Michigan chose to do so...

Authorizing the subopenas "does provide this body the leverage needed to negotiate from a position of strenghth," said Rep. William Delahunt (news, bio, voting record), D-Mass.

Republicans called the authorization premature, though some GOP members said they would consider voting to approve the subpoenas if Conyers promises to issue them only if he has evidence of wrongdoing.

Conyers agreed. "This (authority) will not be used in a way that will make you regret your vote."
Pre-authorizing authority to take action as a bargaining chip with the assurance that the authority wouldn't be used improperly?

I would have thought buying a pig in a poke would have gone out of style by now, regardless of whether it's a Republican President or a Democratic Representative doing the selling.

Either vote to issue them now or vote not to issue them. This vote just gives Congressmen an out should things turn out badly (at least in theory, but that theory hasn't been exactly ironclad protection for Kerry or Clinton).
 
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  • #24
I confess I don't know much about what this is all about. It just seems to me that to be a waste of time. Certainly there are more important issues we need to be focusing on, IMO. I understand the desire to get Bush out of the Whitehouse but that is why we have elections. If he is impeached, who takes over in the interim?
 
  • #25
Ivan Seeking
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I confess I don't know much about what this is all about. It just seems to me that to be a waste of time. Certainly there are more important issues we need to be focusing on, IMO. I understand the desire to get Bush out of the Whitehouse but that is why we have elections. If he is impeached, who takes over in the interim?

There is nothing more important than the Constitution. This is what soldiers [and politicians] are sworn to protect with their lives.
 
  • #26
There is nothing more important than the Constitution. This is what soldiers [and politicians] are sworn to protect with their lives.

That's a fine statement, Ivan. What exactly is unconstitutional here? Or is this one of those grey areas that simply needs to be defined?
 
  • #27
Ivan Seeking
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Obstruction of justice by the White House is certainly a Constitutional concern. Whether or not that happened is what needs to be determined. On the surface things, it appears that the legal process was being manipulated for political reasons.

Oh yes, and it does appear that someone lied to Congress.
 
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  • #28
Astronuc
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Oh yes, and it does appear that someone lied to Congress.
And it is way more serious than Monica Lewinsky. :yuck:

Arbitrarily firing people (when the motive is replacing people with political cronies) and covering it up might be considered a violation of due process.
 
  • #29
turbo
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And it is way more serious than Monica Lewinsky. :yuck:

Arbitrarily firing people (when the motive is replacing people with political cronies) and covering it up might be considered a violation of due process.
And firing prosecutors for successfully prosecuting Republicans (Duke Cunningham) or for failing to aggressively pursue Democratic candidates prior to the election should be considered obstruction of justice. If politicians are allowed to use the Justice Department to shield themselves or smear their opponents, then the DOJ is a joke.
 
  • #30
BobG
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And it is way more serious than Monica Lewinsky. :yuck:

Arbitrarily firing people (when the motive is replacing people with political cronies) and covering it up might be considered a violation of due process.

Arbitrarily firing people to replace them with political cronies isn't unconstitutional and isn't even illegal.

Firing a US attorney to halt an investigation of political cronies or as punishment for not investigating political enemies in time for an election would be obstruction of justice, which is a crime, but not against the constitution.

Lying about the firings raises strong suspicions that there were motives the Justice Department didn't want exposed, but isn't obstruction of justice in itself. In fact, the only reason this raised any hubbub is that the reason given by the Justice Department hurt the reputation of the fired US Attorneys. Had the Justice Department said the attorneys were leaving to "spend more time with their families" neither the public nor future employers of the attorneys would have raised an eyebrow.

Providing a hurtful reason suggests that the firings were aimed at sending a message rather than just the normal replacement of political appointees with a new favorite.
 
  • #31
And firing prosecutors for successfully prosecuting Republicans (Duke Cunningham) or for failing to aggressively pursue Democratic candidates prior to the election should be considered obstruction of justice. If politicians are allowed to use the Justice Department to shield themselves or smear their opponents, then the DOJ is a joke.

OK, now I get it. Thank you, turbo. Certainly, if that was the motivation for the firings, there needs to be some rules around that.
 
  • #32
Astronuc
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And firing prosecutors for successfully prosecuting Republicans (Duke Cunningham)
That is believed to be the case regarding Carol Lam, USAttorney in San Diego, who successfully prosecuted Cunningham and others.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carol_Lam

The controversy includes whether or not the firings were legitimately 'performance-based' or were really political retaliation with some subsequent lying to Congress or investigators about what actually did happen.
 
  • #33
Ivan Seeking
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This morning at the WH press conference with Tony Snow:

Reporter: Why is there a large gap in the emails [released by the WH] just before the firings occurred?

Snow: I've been led to believe that there's a good answer for that question.

Hmmmmm...
 
  • #34
Ivan Seeking
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OK, now I get it. Thank you, turbo. Certainly, if that was the motivation for the firings, there needs to be some rules around that.

There are rules [laws] about this. That's why this is an issue.
 
  • #35
edward
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The firings were definitely not due to poor performance.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Six of the eight U.S. attorneys fired by the Justice Department ranked in the top third among their peers for the number of prosecutions filed last year, according to an analysis of federal records.

http://www.fox11az.com/news/topstories/stories/kmsb-20070321-apjc-firedprosicuters.170cf4c.html [Broken]

Bush is not going to allow "his people" to testify under oath.

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/03/21/MNGRUOOV9T1.DTL
 
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