Democrats & Liberals Archives

Executive Privilege

It looks like Congress will issue subpoenas to White House staff over the US Attorney issue — and President Bush will claim executive privilege. But Bush swears he was out of the loop on the firings, so how the heck can he claim executive privilege?

According to President Bush, "The President relies upon his staff to provide him candid advice...if the staff of a President operated in constant fear of being hauled before various committees to discuss internal deliberations, the President would not receive candid advice." But, since Bush says nobody talked to him about the firings, how is this concern over candid advice to the President relevant? Bush himself says he wasn't getting ANY advice on the subject.

Now, executive privilege isn't mentioned in the Constitution at all and the very idea of invoking it has been fought over since the founding of our country, so I'm not going to try to settle it now. But it seems irrelevant in this case, anyhow.

And while executive privilege may be a complicated legal issue, the importance of the US Attorney firings is simple. It appears that several of the Attorneys were either fired because they refused to prosecute Democrats or were fired to keep them from prosecuting Republicans. It appears that the firings are at the very least unethical, and in at least one case, may be felony obstruction of justice.

In order to find out the truth, the people involved -- Sampson, Rove, Gonzales and Miers -- must be put under oath. Unfortunately, most of these people are known liars and cannot be trusted to tell the truth unless there are consequences for lying.

Gonzales already lied by telling Congress that the firings were performance related. It turned out that these attorneys had fine performance records. He told Congress that the firings were not politically motivated. It turned out that the President's top political advisor was deeply involved.

Remember the Libby case? At first, Libby, Rove, Cheney and Bush all said they knew nothing about the leaking of a covert CIA operative's name. Under oath, it came out that they ALL knew about it. Remember how President Bush said he didn't know convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff? Pictures of the two of them together soon surfaced and it turned out that Abramoff had been to the White House literally hundreds of times.

None of these people can be trusted to tell the truth. They must be put under oath. I don't care if the hearing is public or private, but they must be under oath or they will just lie again.

It appears that the firings were unethical, and in one case, may constitute felony obstruction of justice. It also appears that executive privilege does not apply. If the whole thing is all a miscommunication as President Bush claims, then Gonzales, Sampson, Rove and Miers should all be proud to stand up and swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Posted by American Pundit at March 23, 2007 1:46 AM
Comments
Comment #213308

Have you read this thread?
http://www.watchblog.com/democrats/archives/004914.html

Posted by: john.trevisani at March 23, 2007 7:29 AM
Comment #213332

I learned two things from your post.

1). You don’t think that executive privilege should apply here.

2). You have no idea whatsoever what the words “exectuive privilege” mean.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 23, 2007 11:09 AM
Comment #213333

“In order to find out the truth, the people involved — Sampson, Rove, Gonzales and Miers — must be put under oath…Gonzales already lied by telling Congress that the firings were performance related. It turned out that these attorneys had fine performance records. He told Congress that the firings were not politically motivated.”


Gonzales didn’t lie and there’s no illegality involved at all; it’s a political witchhunt that the left won’t let go b/c they can’t do anything else but go after Bush. As far as the job performance is concerned, one of the attorneys wouldn’t prosecute illegals that committed crimes!


Bottom line is that Dems just want Rove subpoenaed so they can try and get him to perjure himself. Don’t think so lefties; you’ll have to keep milking that irrelevant (former) White House official Scooter Libby. Some “big” fish you got there. Ha!

Posted by: rahdigly at March 23, 2007 11:21 AM
Comment #213334

These are political appointments and can be terminated for political reasons as Clinton did with (was it) 93 of them when he took office. There is not possibility of a wrongful termination. These are not career civil servants who have the protection of custom and law. In fact in both custom and law they serve until the president decides they serve no longer.

This is a political question. Do not try to make it a legal one.

Posted by: Jack at March 23, 2007 11:32 AM
Comment #213337

Leaving aside the legal issues, is there any good reason why Gonzales, etc., shouldn’t be willing to discuss these things on the record? They aren’t George Bush’s personal servants, they work for the people of the US. Is it too much to ask them to account for how they are doing their job? We are not talking about classified intelligence here.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 23, 2007 12:29 PM
Comment #213338

Woody, is there any reason that Bush shouldn’t order the Justice Department to interrogate the clerks of judges with whom Bush disagrees on policy to see if they can find any wrong-doing or maybe get them to commit perjury

How about Congressmen and their aides? Put them under oath and interrogate them too?

After all, all of those people work for the people of the United States. If you’re going to say Separation of Powers be damned, then what’s for good for the goose is good for the gander.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 23, 2007 12:44 PM
Comment #213342

Jack,

The Prez can name the prosecutors, but Gonzales abused a provision in the Patriot act to replace these prosecutors without senate approval. It shows this administration has no problem with abusing the Patriot act for political reasons.

Secondly, Gonzales claimed originally that the replacements were not politically motivated. His emails show this was a lie. He explicitly discussed with Miers and Rove the idea of using the Patriot act to get around needing Senate approval to replace problem prosecutors.

Finally, this wasn’t business as usual or comparable to what Clinton or Reagan did. In a memo, Sampson succinctly outlined the difference: “Once confirmed by the Senate and appointed, U.S. attorneys serve for four years and then hold over indefinitely (at the pleasure of the president, of course). Presidents Reagan and Clinton did not seek to remove and replace the U.S. attorneys they had appointed whose terms had expired, but instead permitted those U.S. attorneys to serve indefinitely under the holdover provision.”

Sure the president could have replaced them using the same rules as every other president, but he didn’t. I think that makes what he did even worse.

Posted by: Max at March 23, 2007 12:56 PM
Comment #213343
You have no idea whatsoever what the words “exectuive privilege” mean.

I’m working from President Bush’s definition of executive privilege that I quoted in the article. Why don’t you educate both of us on where we have it wrong?

Gonzales didn’t lie

Yes he did. I gave two clear examples. Assuming you rad the article in the first place, perhaps you should go back and read it again.

How about Congressmen and their aides? Put them under oath and interrogate them too?

Sure, why not? Do you have some reason to believe they’re breaking the law? I’d think you alleged “small government” conservatives would insist on it.

There is not possibility of a wrongful termination.

Nice strawman, Jack. But I didn’t say anything about wrongful termination.

It appears these attorneys were fired because they either wouldn’t prosecute Democrats or because they wouldn’t stop prosecuting Republicans. In the first case it’s unethical and in the second case it’s felony obstruction of justice.

I would think that as a good, law-abiding American citizen, you would want our government’s leaders to stand up under oath; tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth; and clear this matter up.

Posted by: American Pundit at March 23, 2007 12:56 PM
Comment #213344

Loyal opposition,

Do the people you mention have a record of lying when asked questions? I think you have a good point, but there’s something to the fact that these people have a history of lying. Believe me, this is a ridiculous situation for everyone, but they created it.

Posted by: Max at March 23, 2007 1:00 PM
Comment #213346

LO,

I didn’t say that the Bush’s aides should be forced to testify. I asked why they weren’t willing to testify voluntary. If they are worried about a perjury trap then they don’t have to take an oath. (Of course, there is also the option of telling the truth, but no matter…)

I suppose one could argue that they should refuse to talk to Congress on principle, but that doesn’t sound anything like conservatism or limited government. We tried having a king and decided we didn’t like it.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 23, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #213349

Okay, let me just step in here to represent the “duhhh” populace. I worked for the A.G.’s office, Dpt. of Justice for 26 years in California. Even at the lowest, non-law enforcement level, we all swore an oath and signed papers that we would adhere to, support and contibute to enforcement of the laws of the land. We SWORE to that…. These people we’re talking about ( some of them anyway) are Civil Servants, and as such have also sworn the same way. It hasn’t kept some of them from lying long and well, so just what exactly makes us think that swearing an oath again, will make them see the light and START to tell the truth now????
Man, you guys on the other side of the aisle just go berserk when you think your precious Bush and Co. and going to get nailed. What is the problem with learning the truth, and not as you would like to have it, or interpret it, but the way the law says it is to be? If you think they are lily white and pure, then let them testify…..prove it!!!!

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 23, 2007 1:24 PM
Comment #213352

To all the anti-Bushies screaming for “subpoenas”, there’s no crime committed; they didn’t get rid of any prosecutors that were conducting corruption probes. There’s no evidence, anyway, that they did. This is complete (and utter) crap; the dems need to prove that they won’t abuse their powers and (actually) go after the bad guys, instead of going after Bush!


“President Bush is entitled to replace his U.S. attorneys; he’d be entitled to do so if he thought they weren’t pursuing his prosecutorial priorities with sufficient vigor, or even if he just wanted to give other lawyers a shot at the jobs. The many e-mails that the administration has released for the most part suggest nothing nefarious in the dismissal process.”

Posted by: rahdigly at March 23, 2007 1:52 PM
Comment #213353

It is quite normal for an incoming president to “fire” all (or at least most) of the federal prosecutoers…it is extremely rare for any federal prosecutor to be fired anything except “due cause”…and this is usually quite evident to the public.

What stinks in this case is that these federal prosecutors were appointed by Bush and removed by Bush during his term of office and there is no hint of malfeasance in office by the prosecutors.

How many prosecutors did Clinton fire during his 8 years in office beyond the initial firing when he initially took office; and if he did fire a prosecutor thusly, what were the reasons given???

Posted by: Rachel at March 23, 2007 1:54 PM
Comment #213360

These are political appointments and can be terminated for political reasons …. There is not possibility of a wrongful termination.

I have to disagree with you to a certain extent Jack. While, yes, these are political appointment, the White House and/or Justice has no right to unilaterally terminate these individuals for job performance. That is the heart of the problem.

David Iglasias wrote in The New York Times the other day: “only a written retraction by the Justice Department setting the record straight regarding my performance would settle the issue for me.”

The White House and/or Justice is obligated to set the record straight on this matter. I believe the suspicion coming from the Democrats is, and possible testimony may show that, that the White House tried to paint a non-political picture on politican decisions. That’s the mistake here.

Posted by: Steve K at March 23, 2007 2:23 PM
Comment #213361

Oops, I mean “on political decisions.”

Posted by: Steve K at March 23, 2007 2:24 PM
Comment #213363

Rah..you’ve got to quit picking out the parts you like and ignore the rest…here is the 2nd. paragraph to what you just provided..

It would not be acceptable for Mr. Bush to fire the attorneys to short-circuit prosecutions of political corruption among Republicans. So far there’s no evidence that he did, and in fact the most questionable conduct we know of originated in Congress, with New Mexico Republicans Sen. Pete Domenici and Rep. Heather Wilson. But in at least two of the eight cases, there are reasonable questions to be asked. And given the administration’s incorrect and inadequate answers to the Senate thus far, Congress is right to pursue those questions.
Go back and start reading CAREFULLY from the word “But”.


Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 23, 2007 2:28 PM
Comment #213365
“only a written retraction by the Justice Department setting the record straight regarding my performance would settle the issue for me.”

David has a personal issue with the reasons for his termination, that doesn’t mean it was illegal, unethical or wrong to fire him.

My question remains, if there is a thought that the terminations were to avoid some corruption or internal prosecution of the administraion, then I think that would be crossing a line, though not unprecidented.

However, I haven’t seen that much evidence to suggest such a thing, from the emails and other discussion on the matter it appears that the terminations were done because the prosecutors weren’t prosecuting specific cases that somoene in the administration or FBI wanted prosecuted.

Does anyone have anything else to point to about the possibility that the eight terminations were to avoid republican corruption prosecution?

Posted by: Rhinehold at March 23, 2007 2:31 PM
Comment #213366

Why spend time arguing with the Bushco apologists? Are we to act surprised that these “loyal Bushies” would defend this administration for yet more bloody lying and lawlessness? Nevermind their “opinions.” As usual, they’re defending the indefensible — and very likely, they know this.

Here is a good article to read about this topic of “executive privilege”:
Subpoenas and the Exercise of “Executive Privilege”

From the link:

Certainly, there is sufficient to justify the kind of careful probing both Conyers and Leahy suggest. Whether there is enough to warrant appointment of a Special Prosecutor is a separate and harder question.

Even if there were no suspicion of possible criminal conduct, there is still reason to query whether the protection of advice to the President really does justify an absolute privilege against Congress.

Without question, we want executive branch advisors to be candid. But we also want executive branch advisors to remain within the law. And we want everyone on the federal payroll to feel some loyalty not only to the Administration of the day, but to the vision and values of the U.S. Constitution.

It is, moreover, simply not the case that a presidential advisor has be assured that his or her counsel will never come to light. No one can absolutely control the documentation that they provide while working in the federal government. Criminal investigations can result in the disclosure of presidential communications. And as the Supreme Court held in 1977, even former Presidents do not yield an unfettered veto over what happens to their non-personal papers. That means that advisors in fact must - and indeed should - operate according to the principle that their words might one day filter into the public domain.


Also, this blogpost is interesting:

Did Anyone in the White House Act Unlawfully?

From that link:

the Court would be most reluctant to intrude on Executive communications the closer those communications get to the President himself. But the Court has never established a flat rule that such communications are per se privileged — after all, Nixon had to turn over his tapes of Oval Office conversations — or that close advisors can never be compelled to testify. And as I mentioned yesterday, it’s not uncommon for such close aides to testify about matters in the Executive Office of the President — it happened frequently in the Clinton Administration, for instance. In this case, if any wrongdoing occurred, it almost certainly occurred in the White House itself, which is where any incriminating evidence would be. Thus, if Congress is entitled to actually learn about the reasons for the U.S. Attorneys’ dismissals, and possible pressure brought to bear on their prosecutorial practices, then it will necessarily need to receive information about what transpired in the White House. (After all, it was the President who dismissed the officers.)
Posted by: Adrienne at March 23, 2007 2:32 PM
Comment #213373

To all liberals

Is this all you have? Is this all you can do? Stop fishing and go to work. It’s what you were hired to do.

Posted by: wkw at March 23, 2007 2:58 PM
Comment #213374

Rhinehold,

Iglasias (and any of the others who were dismissed for “performance”) have the right to have their records set straight. It makes it tougher to get a job if you have to tell potential employers “I was fired from that job because of poor performance.”

Posted by: Steve K at March 23, 2007 2:58 PM
Comment #213375

Steve K,

I don’t disagree. In their position I would want to get some sort of specific answer.

Posted by: Rhinehold at March 23, 2007 3:06 PM
Comment #213381

I think the reality of the situation is that if Bush acts stubbornly and forces the Congress to issue subpeonas and then fights them tooth and nail (a reasonable expectation given the parties invovled) it will be a couple of years before it is settled in court. Bush will be thankfully a bad memory by then and other than dredging up some damaging information that makes the GOP look even worse than it does today, will do nothing. What will also solve nothing is giving Bush what he wants here. Rove and Miers not under oath = lies plain and simple - no truth will be gotten this way. On one hand, it makes the Bush administration look bad becase it is obvious that they are hiding something - they already look like incompetent bunglers with no concept of what the truth is so this doesn’t really make them look that much worse. On the other, we will not ever get to the bottom of this and while firing these appointees is legal (though only 5 have been removed during their terms since 1980 - so absolutly no comparison to Clinton so quit trying) they should be up front as to the reason; we have a right to know and not be lied to.

As to executive priviledge, if Karl Rove was not acting in his role as advisor to the president and was making policy decisions on his own then I don’t see any conflict with “executive priviledge.” If he was acting in his role of advisor to the president then, once again, George Bush is lying about not knowing anything about this - a real shocker. If they were up to something illegal - say obstructing justice, executive priviledge doesn’t apply to protecting the president or themselves from illegal acts. If anyone on the right thinks that Rove and Miers will tell the truth if the are not put under oath they are delusional. So Bush is offering nothing other than continued deception.

Posted by: Tom Snediker at March 23, 2007 4:16 PM
Comment #213385

Tom, you’re right. No matter what happens with this issue Bushco has once again been exposed as LIARS who CANNOT BE TRUSTED, and who are LAWLESS and INSANELY SECRETIVE. Really this is just one more of the many reasons this administration should be impeached. Unfortunately, for some unfathomable reason the impeachment option is “off the table.”

“To all liberals

Is this all you have? Is this all you can do? Stop fishing and go to work. It’s what you were hired to do.”

We just passed a bill to give the troops exactly what they need, and set a timeline to remove our troops from Iraq. Listen to Murtha’s speech in the link — he gives all of the details on what the bill covers.
You don’t have to thank us, we know you’re very grateful — after all isn’t that why America elected the Democrats? Yes, indeed it is.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 23, 2007 4:51 PM
Comment #213389

Adrienne,

And now Bush is complaining that the bill “delays the delivery of vital resources for our troops”. They gave you an appropriation, pal, what do you want? Learn to compromise.

He also said it was a “narrow majority”. Tee hee.
Actually it was 51%. I guess the definition of narrow depends on which side you’re on.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 23, 2007 5:26 PM
Comment #213390

Minutes after that bill passed The House, the spin began. PORK items hidden in it….can you imagine???? Agriculture subsidies to growers who were decimated by one of the most cruel winters in years. More levy funds for N.O. and the Katrina survivors. Unfathomable how we could dare to connect some well-needed $$ on top of this bill. Granted, it was insurance, and incentive to those on “our” side who were afraid to ruffle feathers. Well, guess what? We did exactly what we were charged with from the last elections. Change the politics of the war and get us out of there !
And Bush in one of his greatest moments, ear to ear sneer……….reiterated his determination to veto this bill. Ahhh…another great day in history.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 23, 2007 5:32 PM
Comment #213392

Sandra,

“Minutes after that bill passed The House, the spin began.”

We were talking about the earmarks (oh, excuse me, PORK) well before the bill was passed. I thought you guys despised earmarks (oops, pardon me once again). Guess when you need to buy votes from your own party, anything can happen.

The only difference I see between Democrats and Republicans is that I expect huge spending and hipocrasy from the Dem’s.

Posted by: wkw at March 23, 2007 5:46 PM
Comment #213396
Does anyone have anything else to point to about the possibility that the eight terminations were to avoid republican corruption prosecution?

Sure Rhinehold, the one you already know about but refuse to accept:

On May 10, 2006, US Attorney Carol Lam notified the Justice Department that she was going after Republican defense contractor Brent Wilkes and CIA administrator Kyle “Dusty” Foggo in connection with the Randy “Duke” Cunningham bribery case. The next day, as the investigation was widened to include House Appropriations Committee Chairman Jerry Lewis (R-Ca.), Alberto Gonzales’ Justice Department decided to shut her down.

One day after being notified of the expanded investigation, Alberto Gonzales’ chief of staff, D. Kyle Sampson (who resigned last week) sent an email to William Kelley in the White House counsel’s office requesting a meeting to discuss “the real problem we have right now with Carol Lam.”

On the face of it, that looks like felony obstruction of justice. I’d think you would want the admininstration to clear that up. Otherwise, you’re sanctioning possible criminal activity for purely partisan reasons.

Posted by: American Pundit at March 23, 2007 6:23 PM
Comment #213401

wkw

“The only difference I see between Democrats and Republicans is that I expect huge spending and hipocrasy from the Dem’s.”

LOL! You got to be kidding me!!! The deficit, federal debt, and spending in general was greatly increased during the 12 years the Republicans were in power. As for hypocrisy…ever heard of Mark Foley’s lewd conduct, Jack Abramoff’s Republican connections, Duke Cunningham’s bribe money, and the constant lies of the Bush Administration???
As for the earmarks, every politician does it to get money to their states, after all one has to look after his or her own constituents, such as the voters.

Posted by: greenstuff at March 23, 2007 7:05 PM
Comment #213414

wkw,
You want to talk about Pork NOW, do you? Where was all your outrage when over 12,000 separate pieces of highly expensive pork were put into appropriations bills by Republicans in 2006? As Sandra pointed out, the Dems just gave some funds to people and industries who are really suffering at the moment and need the help, so please don’t act all outraged as though they’re trying to build “bridges to nowhere” or something, when none of you seemed to give a damn about thoroughly disgusting and needless earmarks (oh excuse me, Pork) when the GOP was in charge.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 23, 2007 8:12 PM
Comment #213416
every politician does it to get money to their states, after all one has to look after his or her own constituents

And we come to the problem with the two major parties, using our hard earned money as bribery chips in washington for power plays.

The Democrats told us that they were different, that they wouldn’t do this kind of thing. Within months of being in office they go right to the tricks they complained about for 10 years previous.

More of the same.

Posted by: Rhinehold at March 23, 2007 8:23 PM
Comment #213423

No Rhinehold, I know you wish it was so, but it is not more of the same at all. You should take a look sometime at the amounts of money that were being spent over the past few years, and exactly what the GOP was spending that money on. There is no comparison here. NONE.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 23, 2007 8:48 PM
Comment #213427

This is interesting. It looks as though Bush has been installing US Attorneys who have histories of voter suppression:
New U.S. attorneys seem to have partisan records

From the link:

Last April, while the Justice Department and the White House were planning the firings, Rove gave a speech in Washington to the Republican National Lawyers Association. He ticked off 11 states that he said could be pivotal in the 2008 elections. Bush has appointed new U.S. attorneys in nine of them since 2005: Florida, Colorado, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Arkansas, Michigan, Nevada and New Mexico. U.S. attorneys in the latter four were among those fired.
Posted by: Adrienne at March 23, 2007 9:23 PM
Comment #213442
Loyal opposition,

Do the people you mention have a record of lying when asked questions? I think you have a good point, but there’s something to the fact that these people have a history of lying. Believe me, this is a ridiculous situation for everyone, but they created it.

Max, this history of “lying” you allude to is, I suppose, a natural response on your part. But it’s what absolutely EVERYBODY says about their political opponents. A Bush partisan (which I am not) would say that all Democrats are liars too.

So should we just let let the witch hunts begin, treat everybody like liars and investigate them without regard for the separation of powers or the rule of law? Just on the basis that somebody somewhere doesn’t think they always tell the truth? I don’t think so.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 24, 2007 12:34 AM
Comment #213443

Addriene, wow. You’ve discovered that political appointees in the Justice Department have “partisan records.”

Yep. That’s how it works, and just how it has worked since forever. And that’s why Clinton fired every single US attorney when he came into office and stacked those offices with his political cronies. So what?

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 24, 2007 12:39 AM
Comment #213468

LO:
“So what?”

So what to voter suppression? Yeah, I’m not surprised. You “loyal Bushies” have said “so what?” to an illegal pre-emptive war and occupation based on Lies, and to Torture and Extraordinary Renditioning to foreign gulags, and to Spying on American citizens, and lots of other completely screwed up, morally wrong things that this morally bankrupt administration has done. It’s not like the left is expecting that 30% who still support Bushco to suddenly grow consciences now.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 12:34 PM
Comment #213470

Adrienne,

You call Republicans liars.
You call Republicans torturors.
You call Republicans morally bankrupt.
You accuse us of spying on innocent Americans.
Liberals call us baby killers.
Liberals call us racists.
Liberals accuse us of keeping people poor.

You act as though you live in a world where you could be thrown in jail at any moment for just being you.

Yet, I still read your incessant babbling. You keep writing whatever you want. You keep living the life you wish. I wonder if you realize the freedoms you have.

If I were truly guilty of 5% of the things you accuse me of, I would be in jail. Let alone disowned from my family. Yet, you can still read my incessant babbling. I keep writing whatever I want and lead the life I wish.

You accuse me of horrendous deeds.

I only ask you to reevaluate your reality.

Posted by: wkw at March 24, 2007 1:09 PM
Comment #213476

wkw:
“You call Republicans liars.
You call Republicans torturors.
You call Republicans morally bankrupt.
You accuse us of spying on innocent Americans.”

The Republicans who are right now in charge of this country — the Neocon Republicans — are all of these things.

“Liberals call us baby killers.
Liberals call us racists.
Liberals accuse us of keeping people poor.”

Where the shoe fits.

“You act as though you live in a world where you could be thrown in jail at any moment for just being you.”

Nah, I’m not that paranoid — after all, I live in Berkeley. However thanks to this administration, we do now live in a country where there are “free speech zones” and where you can be arrested for stepping outside of them.

“Yet, I still read your incessant babbling.”

Too bad.

“You keep writing whatever you want.”

Yes, I will.

“You keep living the life you wish.”

I don’t need YOU to tell me that.

“I wonder if you realize the freedoms you have.”

And I wonder if you actually realize how this administration has been violating the Constitution and abridging our rights and freedoms?

“If I were truly guilty of 5% of the things you accuse me of, I would be in jail. Let alone disowned from my family.”

I have accused YOU of nothing but going along with administration. You do, don’t you?

“Yet, you can still read my incessant babbling. I keep writing whatever I want and lead the life I wish.”

Good for you.

“You accuse me of horrendous deeds.”

WHERE? Where have I accused YOU personally of horrendous deeds? Nowhere.
I don’t accuse, I KNOW that this administration is guilty of many horrendous deeds. And I KNOW that many of you still support them, despite these horrendous deeds.

“I only ask you to reevaluate your reality.”

And I ask you to actually look at the reality of what you are supporting. Also, critique my messages, rather than me, the messenger, and quit taking everything so damn personally.
Thanks.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 1:39 PM
Comment #213477

Addrienne, the lack of action on voter suppression and vote fraud is precisely the reason cited in firing some of those US attorneys.

In any case, when I say “So what?” it doesn’t refer to your laundry list of partisan talking points about everything under the sun related to the Bush administration but the practice of putting political partisans in politically-appointed offices. You point out this practice as if it were some great revelation and scandal when in fact that’s what has always happened and what’s supposed to happen.

We elect a President and he appoints his political allies instead of his political opponents to jobs in HIS administration. If you don’t like it, vote for a different presidential candidate, as I’m sure you will.

And if a Democrat is elected president, I somehow doubt that you’ll shed crocodile tears when he/she fires and hires whoever he/she pleases.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 24, 2007 1:42 PM
Comment #213480

LO:
“Addrienne, the lack of action on voter suppression and vote fraud is precisely the reason cited in firing some of those US attorneys.”

We know from the e-mails that the reasons that were cited were bunk for the most part, it was all about political loyalty. We also know that the fired judges were refusing to indict Democrats where there wasn’t enough evidence to convict. However from the linked article I put up, we now see that those who were hired to replace the fired judges are people who were working to suppress the vote elsewhere — and it just so happens that this took place in states that Karl Rove pinpointed as important for the GOP in ‘08.
And btw, my name is Adrienne, not “Addriene”.

“We elect a President and he appoints his political allies instead of his political opponents to jobs in HIS administration. If you don’t like it, vote for a different presidential candidate, as I’m sure you will.”

Yes, at the start of a president’s term in office they appoint judges who they feel share their values and who will do a good job. After their appointment however, the president is expected to leave them alone to do it. NOT interfere with the independent status of the judiciary for political reasons the way this administration has done.

“And if a Democrat is elected president, I somehow doubt that you’ll shed crocodile tears when he/she fires and hires whoever he/she pleases.”

Wrong. I wouldn’t approve of this happening with a Democratic president either.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 2:06 PM
Comment #213486

Adrienne,

Now I understand how liberals are for gun control.

“Also, critique my messages, rather than me, the messenger,”

Kinda like holding the gun responsible, not the one pulling the trigger.

Posted by: wkw at March 24, 2007 3:12 PM
Comment #213491

wkw:
“Now I understand how liberals are for gun control.”

Some are, some aren’t.

“Kinda like holding the gun responsible, not the one pulling the trigger.”

It makes no bloody sense to take things personally here. Look do yourself a favor: look at the top of each column on the main page of this blog. “Critique the message, not the messenger” is the rule that everyone has to follow.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 3:31 PM
Comment #213518

Unlike he previously claimed: Documents Show Gonzales Knew Of and Approved US Attorney Firings
Also: Reid Says Gonzales to Leave Within Month ‘One Way or the Other’?

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 6:51 PM
Comment #213561

More from some extremely damaging Justice Dept/White House e-mails released late Friday:

Top Justice spokesperson’s advice to White House: US Attorney firings won’t be ‘national story’

Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Counsel, William Kelley, to Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Communications Director for Policy and Planning, Catherine Martin:

“Before executing this plan, we wanted to give your offices a heads up and seek input on changes that might reduce the profile or political fallout. Thanks.”

Tasia Scolinos, Director of Public Affairs at the Department of Justice, to Catherine Martin:

“It’s only six US attorneys (there are 94) and I think most of them will resign quietly - they don’t get anything out of making it public they were asked to leave in terms of future job prospects,”
“I don’t see it as being a national story - especially if it phases in over a few months. Any concerns on your end?”
“The one common link here is that three of them are along the southern border so you could make the connection that DOJ is unhappy with the immigration prosecution numbers in those districts,”

So nice isn’t it? To see such honest, above-board behavior from all the “loyal Bushies.” Really heartwarming.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 24, 2007 10:12 PM
Comment #213579

Gonzales SHOULD be aware of all of hirings and firings of US attorneys—it’s a big part of his job, after all.

He can simply say that he wasn’t involved in all the specifics of each case and that’s what he meant by “not involved.” It doesn’t makes him look good because it appears like he’s not on top of things as much as he should be and that he should have all the facts before he opens his mouth.

In any case, his comment about not being involved was to reporters, and innacuracy in a press conference is not the same thing at all as innacuracy under oath.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 24, 2007 11:51 PM
Comment #213628

Good idea, and Great Op-ed in the Boston Globe:
Gonzales should be impeached
By Robert Kuttner


An excerpt:

THE HOUSE of Representatives should begin impeachment proceedings against Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

Gonzales, the nation’s highest legal officer, has been point man for serial assaults against the rule of law, most recently in the crude attempt to politicize criminal prosecutions. Obstruction of a prosecution is a felony, even when committed by the attorney general.

The firings of US attorneys had multiple political motives, all contrary to longstanding practice. In some cases, Republican politicians and the White House were angry that prosecutors were not going after Democrats with sufficient zeal. In other cases, they wanted the prosecutors to lighten up on Republicans. In still others, exemplary prosecutors were shoved aside to make room for rising Republican politicians being groomed for higher office.

It’s hard to imagine a more direct assault on the impartiality of the law or the professionalism of the criminal justice system. There are several other reasons to remove Gonzales, all involving his cavalier contempt for courts and liberties of citizens, most recently in the FBI’s more than 3,000 cases of illegal snooping on Americans.

Why impeachment? In our system of checks and balances, the Senate confirms members of the Cabinet, but impeachment for cause is the only way to remove them. The White House, by refusing to cooperate, has now left Congress no other recourse.

Instead of responding to lawful subpoenas, President Bush has invited congressional leaders to meet informally with Karl Rove and other officials involved in the prosecutor firings, with no sworn testimony and no transcript. Rove narrowly escaped a perjury indictment in the Cheney/Libby/Wilson affair. You might think these people had something to hide.

After the administration refused to cooperate, Republican Senator Arlen Specter inadvertently gave the best rationale for impeachment. Referring to the White House invocation of executive privilege, Specter warned, “If there is to be a confrontation, it’s going to take two years or more to get it resolved in court.”

Exactly so. By contrast, an impeachment inquiry could be completed in a matter of months. The White House, knowing the stakes, would find it much harder to stonewall. And Gonzales might well be asked to resign rather than exposing the administration to more possible evidence of illegality.

Anyone who agrees that this might be good idea may also want to read this:
Refocusing the Impeachment Movement on Administration Officials Below the President and Vice-President:
Why Not Have A Realistic Debate, with Charges that Could Actually Result in Convictions?
By John W. Dean

Posted by: Adrienne at March 25, 2007 1:18 PM
Comment #213727

Kuttner’s op-ed is absurd because there’s absolutely no evidence that ANY of these firings were in any way related to ANY active investigations.

Asking for investigations is not “obstructing” an investigation. How ridiculous. And when he says that some firings were in an effort “to lighten up on Republicans” he doesn’t name even a single instance where this happened, and I’ve heard nothing to that effect in any of the news. Just saying that it happened in an op-ed piece doesn’t make it so.

It’s interesting, though, that when the Department of Justice demands more prosecutions of voter fraud, Democrats assume that they are the ones being targeted.

Why do Democrats assume that going after voter fraud is an attack on Democrats?

I think we all know the answer to that one.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 25, 2007 9:53 PM
Comment #213866

Loyal:
“Kuttner’s op-ed is absurd because there’s absolutely no evidence that ANY of these firings were in any way related to ANY active investigations.”

I know you wish to believe it’s all coincidence, but the e-mails say differently. And that being the case, your claim of the op-ed being absurd is in fact, absurd.

“Asking for investigations is not “obstructing” an investigation. How ridiculous.”

I think Kuttner is making a very good point. Forget waiting years to get answers. We could quickly get the answers by Impeaching Torquemada Gonzales now. Besides, the e-mails provide enough proof to show us that he’s a bloody liar who has been overseeing the total subversion of American justice.
And it’s nice to see that at least three Republicans looking at this particular instance of Gonzales lying and subverting justice have now concurred. Perhaps they realize that a lot of unpleasantness and bad press for the GOP could be avoided if the Attorney General is made to step down.

“And when he says that some firings were in an effort “to lighten up on Republicans” he doesn’t name even a single instance where this happened, and I’ve heard nothing to that effect in any of the news.”

Duh. Look into the e-mails regarding Carol Lam —the day after she announced federal grand jury indictments on Dusty Foggo and Brent Wilkes, this in relation to the Duke Cunningham crime spree, they wrote an e-mail saying “we have a real problem with Carol Lam”, not long afterward she was then fired.

“Just saying that it happened in an op-ed piece doesn’t make it so.”

Right, it’s not the op-ed despite the good points it made, it’s really the e-mails that are telling the whole story.

“It’s interesting, though, that when the Department of Justice demands more prosecutions of voter fraud, Democrats assume that they are the ones being targeted.”

We know that they were trying to prosecute Democrats for voter fraud because one of the judges who was fired has said this. He also said he knew there simply wasn’t enough evidence to convict, but despite this fact, he was being pressured by Republican lawmakers to prosecute anyway. The two lawmakers have already admitted that they made calls asking about this to the judge. But the judge refused to do the GOP’s bidding, and was then fired.

“Why do Democrats assume that going after voter fraud is an attack on Democrats?”

Because the fired judge said it was regarding Democrats, and because we read the news. You should try it.

“I think we all know the answer to that one.”

Obviously not all of us know what’s going on, but that doesn’t keep some from shooting their mouths off and looking very foolish in the process.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 26, 2007 10:47 PM
Comment #214080
Obviously not all of us know what’s going on, but that doesn’t keep some from shooting their mouths off and looking very foolish in the process.

Exactly. I guess that’s why you ignore that the full resources of the Bush Justice Department, not just Lam, were aggresivley brought to bear in the prosecution of Cunningham. And that DOJ officials up and down the chain of authority were publically speaking against Cunningham and vowing to throw the book at him, which they did.

And let’s just ignore all of the other problems with Lam’s performance that were discussed in emails, such as her total failure to prosecute immigration cases. Let’s say that the Department of Justice wanted to punish Lam for participating in the investigation of a Republican that they were also participating in.

Yep, let’s do that.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 27, 2007 10:56 PM
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