Monday, March 19, 2007

Breaking: U.S. Attorney Purge May Be Illegal

Apparently, there may be more than just red faces as a result of the firing of the eight U.S. Attorneys last December. Think Progress reports that Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT) suspects that one of the firings, of Carol Lam of San Diego, may have been illegal. Jeralyn Merritt of TalkLeft reports that Adam Cohen has written in a NY Times editorial that as many as four laws may have been broken. They're generating quite a list of potential indictments. You have to wonder how long the Congress can ignore all of them.

Now that Congress has changed hands, they're not getting any more "get out of jail free" cards like they got with the Military Commissions Act last year. Abu Gonzalez may have to fall on his sword. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

UPDATE: On a somewhat related issue, looseheadprop at FDL wrote a great Open Letter To Speaker Pelosi today on the subject of impeachment.

UPDATE 2: shoephone passed this link on in the comments, and it's interesting, to say the least. Karl Rove's assertions in speeches of March 8 and 15 are directly contradicted both by Carol Lam's testimony under oath before Congress and a letter the Justice Dept. wrote to Sen. Dianne Feinstein in Sept., 2006. See Paul Kiel's story for the details.

UPDATE 3: Think Progress is now reporting that the White House has begun searching for a replacement for Gonzalez. Choice quote:

Fox News’ Major Garrett reports: “Several GOP [congressional] sources told Fox tonight: Gonzales is the President’s friend and his problem, and that they will waste no political capital defending him.”

Apparently, there's no honor amongst torturers.

Loved this comment from that Think Progress article:

“The Top 10 Reasons Gonzales Must Go”…
1. Lying Under Oath
2. Purging Prosecutors
3. Misusing the Patriot Act’s National Security Letters
4. Authorizing Illegal NSA Domestic Surveillance
5. Enabling John Yoo and Unchecked Presidential War Powers
6. Rendering the Geneva Conventions “Quaint”
7. Supporting Military Commissions and the End of Habeas Corpus
8. Blessing Unprecedented Expansion of Presidential Signing Statements
9. Facilitating a CIA Leak Cover-Up
10. Gutting Minority Voting Rights

For the latest news, hearings, legal filings and other essential documents on the Bush DOJ prosecutor firings, see:
The U.S. Attorney Scandal Documents.”

Comment by Angry One — March 19, 2007 @ 7:46 pm

That's our little Abu.

UPDATE 4: I'd say you can take it to the bank. Abu's gone. Here are reports from (h/t Perrspectives and Taylor Marsh) and CBS News.

Among the names floated Monday by administration officials are Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and White House anti-terrorism coordinator Frances Townsend. Former Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson is a White House prospect. So is former solicitor general Theodore B. Olson, but sources were unsure whether he would want the job.

White House Seeking Gonzales Replacements

Chertoff? Yuck. The Bush Administration of finding someone even worse than his predecessor to fill cabinet posts continues. Of course, what person with a fully functioning mind and a spinal column to call his own would want the job at this point?


shoephone said...

A lot of us have suspected that Lam was "the big catch" in this fired USAs situation. That Lam successfully indicted and convicted Cunningham must have sent the WH into paroxysms of rage. Hearing that she intended to go after Foggo would have sent them completely over the edge. Tony Snow can spin all he wants about the timing and content of the DOJ's inner sanctum emails. The exchange about "the real problem we now have with Carol Lam" is the proverbial smoking gun.

And as always, all roads lead to Karl Rove. He may have been more than a little involved with McKay's firing as well, I just haven't been able to connect all the dots yet.

Cujo359 said...

I'm not terribly surprised by this, either. One reason is that there is a connection from "Dusty" Foggo to Porter Goss to Dick Cheney. Ray McGovern wrote about this in article back in 2004, long before these scandals came to our attention:

Let's just say that any investigation of Foggo was probably too close to Dick Cheney for his comfort.

shoephone said...

Cujo - Paul Kiel at TPMMuckraker, just put this up:

regarding the obvious lies Rove is telling about Carol Lam wrt to immigration cases.

There has always been a lot of competition between Rove and Cheney, to see who could control the Cowboy president the most. At this point, I'd venture to say that Rove's been controlling Bush, but is on a shorter leash since Plame. Likewise, Cheney -- who has has been running his shadow government quite effectively -- is also now on a shorter leash, due to Libby/Plame. But I still think Cheney is smarter than Rove, and while Cheney is involved in the torture and wiretap programs, it's Rove's name that's in those DOJ emails.


I wrote a piece for NewsVine I want you to have a look at :

TPM Nails Alberto

The firing in the Mariannas to protect Chinese Sweatshops. That's a big piece of slime laying out there. It was the template. Josh has it all.