Democrats & Liberals Archives

Those Dirty Rats

President Bush just asked San Diego US Attorney Carol Lam to step down. When Bush appointed her in 2002, Lam vowed to concentrate on prosecuting corrupt politicians and corporate executives — Randy “Duke” Cunningham being the most high-profile example. Apparently, the Bush administration would rather she not do that anymore.

Lam's colleagues were "universally shocked" by her dismissal. "It's virtually unprecedented to fire a U.S. Attorney absent some misconduct in office," said criminal defense attorney Michael Attanasio, a former federal prosecutor.

Today, the local FBI chief, Dan Dzwilewski, weighed in,

"I don't think it's the right way to treat anybody. What's the decision based on?" Dzwilewski said. "I don't share the view of whoever's making the decision back there in Washington that they'd like her to resign. I feel Carol has an excellent reputation and has done an excellent job given her limited resources."

Lam's continued employment as U.S. attorney is crucial to the success of multiple ongoing investigations, the FBI chief said.

As for the reason for any pressure to resign, Dzwilewski said: "I can't speak for what's behind all that, what's the driving force behind this or the rationale. I guarantee politics is involved."

[In my best James Cagney voice:] The Boss don't like you nosin' around here, see. Yeah. You shoulda' stuck to bustin' two-bit smugglers, see. Now we're gonna have ta' wack ya. And let that be a lesson to the resta' you dirty rats who think you can stop us, see. Yeah.

Posted by American Pundit at January 14, 2007 1:23 AM
Comment #203139
I guarantee politics is involved.

Well, duh.

As for your speculation on the reason, without any evidence to back it up, I find it a bit premature and giant assumption. While it might be your right to do, makes a great headline and may even eventually be found to be correct, it may also end up being very unfounded.

It will be interesting to follow though, I admit.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 14, 2007 1:45 AM
Comment #203143

This might just be a good basis for speculation:

“It’s virtually unprecedented to fire a U.S. Attorney absent some misconduct in office,” said criminal defense attorney Michael Attanasio, a former federal prosecutor.
Posted by: womanmarine at January 14, 2007 2:00 AM
Comment #203144


Speculation is one thing, but without anything else to go on we have no idea why she is being asked to resign. I don’t see the necessary jump in logic to assume that she is being ‘fired’ because she was ‘getting to close to crooked republicans’.

Of course her dismissal is political, so was her appointment as well as her position. I don’t see why her dismissal wouldn’t be as well. As I understand it, all political appointees ‘serve at the pleasure of the president’ and until someone provides me with any kind of evidence, reason, etc, other than GOSSIP I don’t really see why we should assume anything…

Of course, that’s never stopped a democrat before…

Merry Fitzman.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 14, 2007 2:09 AM
Comment #203145

*sigh* sorry, Fitzmass… I hate destroying a good joke with a typo.

At least I didn’t denigrate the Armed Forces while doing it.

Oh, and before the responses come, it’s never stopped a republican either. And it’s silly that I even have to say that…

Posted by: rhinehold at January 14, 2007 2:11 AM
Comment #203148

Hmmm, gerrymandering ring a bell? I’d read this earlier about Arkansas:

“Days after the attorney general named a former White House official to serve as interim U.S. attorney in Little Rock, Sen. Mark Pryor added his name Thursday to a bill to restrict the attorney general’s appointment power.”

“Pryor, D-Ark., joined Sens. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., in introducing legislation to change a provision of the Patriot Act that allows for indefinite appointments without Senate confirmation.”

“In December, Pryor and Sen. Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., protested the appointment of Tim Griffin as interim U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas. Griffin, 38, is an Arkansas native who was White House deputy director of political affairs under Karl Rove.”

“The Patriot Act, reauthorized last year, gives attorneys general power to fill vacancies for an indefinite period of time. Before that, the attorney general could make interim appointments for no more than 120 days.”

IMO it looks like just one more example of what happens when too much power is shifted to the executive branch of government. “Confirmation hearingss? We don’t need no stinking confirmation hearings.”

Posted by: KansasDem at January 14, 2007 3:02 AM
Comment #203198

Maybe she put out feelers in the wrong direction?

Posted by: womanmarine at January 14, 2007 2:24 PM
Comment #203762

Announced today:The US attorney for the SF Bay area is stepping down in a “mutual agreement”with Washington. He is noted for bringing prosecutions involving steriods in sports but also for bring prosecutions concerning backdating of stock options bring 2 indictments and several executive resignations. Is this a pattern. Any court watchers out there that can let us know. Are the feds getting rid of attorneys that look into big business misdeeds. If so the we are in for a F***ing for the last two years of the Administration. Enron will look like shoplifting in comparison. Could be they are looking for someone willing to go after Pelosi for anything they can trump up.

Posted by: BillS at January 17, 2007 7:55 PM
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