Congressman Hank Johnson To Introduce Resolution Addressing US Attorney Scandal

I just received information that House Judiciary Committee member, Rep. Hank Johnson of Georgia will be introducing a resolution to honor the work of U.S. Attorneys and specifically those who were ousted for what appears to be political reasons.

While some will argue that these appointments are political in nature and that the U.S. Attorneys serve at the president’s pleasure, there doesn’t appear to be much doubt that these particular attorneys were ousted because they weren’t aggressively pursuing certain politically-motivated cases.

Here is the full text of the resolution: Page 1, Page 2, Page 3

38 comments

  1. CobbGOPer says:

    Whatever.

    You can bet your ass that if a US Attorney serving under President (Shrillary) Clinton dragged his feet in pursuing a politically motivated case involving a Republican, that prosecutor would be shown the door as well.

  2. ABB says:

    Maybe he should introduce a resolution honoring all of the US Attorneys that Bill Clinton fired in 1993. There were FAR MORE THAN 8.

  3. GAWire says:

    Will, perhaps you should check your editorial bulsh&% about politics and serving at the pleasure of the POTUS at the door! Everything in an Administration and Congress is political – so if someone is serving at the pleasure of the President or anyone else for that matter, then POTUS can have the pleasure of sacking anyone they want. If they don’t like it, perhaps they should have found jobs somewhere else outside the Administration.

    Who cares!?! And CobbGOPer is right – Hillary would do the same thing and Bill DID do it, as do all Administrations and many committees, except with Bill, he was firing senior nat’l security and military people who were working on defense and international security issues (i.e. catching Usama Bin Laden) and he fired many for obvious political reasons.

    This is politics – if you can’t deal with it, then sod off!

    As for Johnson’s resolution … that’s horsesh&%! Talk about something political … introducing a resolution to apparently “honor” people who were allegedly fired for political reasons (even though he has no real clue about this). Does anyone else see the irony in that?!? Yeah, I’m sure there wasn’t any political motivation in doing that. I wouldn’t be surprised if ole Hank has some numbers from his constituents that says he needs to do something anti-Bush tout de suite! What an opportunity this is.

    Will, how’s the view from the bandwagon?

    Let me just clarify, too – this isn’t a real issue. This has nothing to do with policy or leadership or even the Bush Administration at all, except for the fact that this is only about finding anything to bash POTUS and the WH with. This is politics, though. This is a typical Harry Reid/Chuck Schumer/liberal media bashing session. Its uncalled for and not even remotely legitimate. Calling for Alberto Gonzales resignation makes me laugh – would they be saying that if Hillary were in the WH? Hell no! This is like Joe Biden accusing someone of plagiarism or Ralph Reed talking about enethical lobbying violations.

    Give me a break

  4. JRM2016 says:

    Its been said here already, but it might have been said first by the wise Editorial Board of the Las Vegas Review Journal here:

    http://www.reviewjournal.com/lvrj_home/2007/Jan-19-Fri-2007/opinion/12068125.html

    The best line from this excellent opinion piece:

    “Replies Andrew C. McCarthy, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, in a Jan. 17 piece for the National Review, “Yes, the public, surely, is about as ‘shocked, shocked’ as Claude Raines’ Captain Renault, and one is left to wonder whether Mr. Nunez spent the 1990s living under a rock.”

    What Mr. McCarthy is referring to is the fact that one of President Bill Clinton’s first official acts upon taking office in 1993 was to fire every single United States attorney then serving — with the sole exception of Michael Chertoff, now Homeland Security secretary, but at the time U.S. attorney for the district of New Jersey, which put him in a position to be rescued by the personal intervention of powerful New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bill Bradley.

    “Were the attorneys Clinton fired guilty of misconduct or incompetence?” Mr. McCarthy asks. “No. As a class they were able (and, it goes without saying, well-connected.) Did he shove them aside to thwart corruption investigations into his own party? No. It was just politics, plain and simple. Patronage is the chief spoil of electoral war.”

    So can our friends on the left please stop the faux shock and move on to something else?

  5. Bull Moose says:

    I disagree here. I disagreed when Clinton mass fired the US Attorneys after being elected. How can I not disagree then and not disagree now? That would be hypocritical, but that’s a very common trait amongst the hard core far right extremists.

    These US Attorneys appear to have been hand selected because they were stirring up waters that some Republicans would like left alone and wouldn’t carry the political water for others.

    Stop the bleeding. The Attorney General needs to fall on his sword and take responsibility for this major F up or carrying out administrative policy and for misleading Congress.

    The President could use this opportunity to appoint someone really dynamic as a new Attorney General. Hell, perhaps he can appoint Patrick Fitzgerald. Embrace your problems and confront them. Getting over the hump sucks, but at least you get over it and past it.

    The Bush White House has a way of dragging it out and lingering in front of the hump for as long as they can…

  6. GAWire says:

    The WH isn’t dragging anything out here – it’s people like Chuck Schumer and his cigar buddies.

    Btw, why isn’t Hillary out front calling for resignations and talking about what an outcry this is? Hmmmm … perhaps she knows better.

    If you serve at the pleasure of the President, then you have no right to bitch and complain about politics when his pleasure turns into displeasure and he sacks you.

  7. JRM2016 says:

    Just as stated in the article, U.S. Attorneys are political employees. They serve at the pleasure of the President. So if they are hired/fired at will it doesn’t amount to a hill of beans. Let’s review a few items.

    1)–Iran is developing nuclear weapons.

    2)–North Korea continues to threaten the stability of South Asia.

    3)–We have a tremendous budget deficit.

    4)–Our educational system is broken.

    5)–We are unable/unwilling to secure our borders.

    But what are the libs most concerned about?

    1)–The disclosure of the identity of a non-covert CIA employee, the investigation of which yielded a conviction for having a bad memory.

    2)–The firing of political employees in the Justice Department.

    3)–Our treatment of terrorists we have captured.

    4)–Gays in the Military (Redux).

    and

    5)–The fact that the Fox News Channel exists.

    What is wrong with this picture?

    Maybe its time for the left to stop seeking political advantage (memo: you won the election, now you get to govern the country) and start offering solutions to the many, many problems facing our nation.

  8. GAWire says:

    JRM, you left out the issue of Sunday alcohol sales. I figured if you were listing issues that were important, then that should be right above Iran developing nukes.

  9. Bull Moose says:

    One of the US Attorneys was at the core of the corruption investigation and was mid-investigation… Come on… And Hillary has called for the resignation of Gonzalez as has Sununu.

    Gonzalez moves on, someone new comes in, and in the future, stuff like this is handled better from the beginning…

  10. GAWire says:

    >>”””Gonzalez moves on, someone new comes in, and in the future, stuff like this is handled better from the beginning… “””

    So, when do we gather around the campfire holding hands and singing kum-bay-ya? Is it before or after you awake to reality?

  11. JRM2016 says:

    Well, if Hilary called for Gonzalez’s resignation I think he should resign. I know I always follow Hilary’s advice in all matters.

    From what I have read, the U.S. Attorney in New Mexico refused to prosecute Democrats who had apparently committed voter fraud in 2004 and that refusal continued through the 2006 election cycle. It seems reasonable that if such a situation occurred in Georgia, many GOPers would be mightily peeved if they were unable to call lawbreakers to account and embolden them further for the next election cycle.

    Perhaps there is some other “corruption” investigation I am not aware of…

    Sununu has an election coming up and is trying to distance himself from Bush.

    This is all bs and we need to focus on something real…like Sunday alcohol sales 🙂

  12. commonsense says:

    Attorney investigates Cunningham and Jerry Lewis…Attorney gets fired…swear to Congress that it didn’t happen that way and you’ll be sharing a cell with Scooter any day

  13. bird says:

    What Clinton did was wrong. Knowing a few Assistant US Attorneys, these guys don’t grow on trees. They are some of the best and brightest, and if these appointments becomes political, we’ll have another broken department to worry about.

    But even if Clinton lets many US attorneys go, he did not pressure them to use their jobs and accompanying powers for political ends. That is highly unethical. It is devastating for a US Attorney to make claims against a citizen.

    I’m amazed some of you don’t see the difference.

  14. bowersville says:

    It is devastating for a US Attorney to make claims against a citizen. Ask Scooter Libby.

    That kangaroo political investigation should have ended as soon as Fitzgerald found out Plame was not covered by law as an undercover CIA agent and was outed by Armitage.

    If this was a demonstration of the best and brightest, no thanks. Fitzgerald should be fired for conducting nothing more than a fishing expedition for Rove.

    Handled better from the beginning? Get real.

    Political appointments are made by politicians. Political appointees serve at the pleasure and are fired at the pleasure. A fact of political life.

    I fully expect the next POTUS, just as all previous POTUS, to fire and hire at their pleasure.

    I’m tired of the right apologizing to the left over total crap, and the left howling like a rabid dog over total BS.

    If the Democrat controlled Congress doesn’t believe the POTUS should hire/fire political appointees, pass a law that will prevent it. Or better yet, pass a ridiculous & useless non-binding resolution.

  15. Erick says:

    Shall we also do something about Chuck Schumer.

    On one hand he is keeping alive an investigation into an abuse of power that is perfectly acceptable under the constitution and on the other hand is using the investigation he is keeping alive to raise money for the DSCC?

    Where’s the outrage over that?

    Oh, and saying

    there doesn’t appear to be much doubt that these particular attorneys were ousted because they weren’t aggressively pursuing certain politically-motivated cases.

    is disingenuous, at best. While it seems clear the DOJ screwed up in the process, there also doesn’t appear to be much doubt that these 8 were fired because several of them were not pursuing vote fraud investigations zealously and the rest were fired because they’d been there forever and the DOJ wanted some fresh faces. Oh, and at least one had serious issues with his management of his office.

  16. AlanSmithee says:

    I agree with Shipp’s column the other day. The lack of action by David Nahmias on all of Perdue’s shady dealings is explained by this. He doesn’t want to be the next Carol Lam, who got canned for going after Duke Cunningham.

  17. JRM2016 says:

    If you don’t want U.S. Attorneys hired and fired at the pleasure of the President, then make them part of the civil service and appointed by bureaucratic flunkies. I’ll tell you this, if I was hired to file a lawsuit by a client and I failed to file it, sooner or later I would be fired. If you are presented with clear evidence of criminal wrongdoing and you fail to act on it for over two years, then you can expect to be terminated.

    Another hypothesis for the “lack of action by David Nahmias on all of Perdue’s shady dealings” that I would put forward for your consideration–no laws were broken.

    I find it hilarious that the party that presided over every major Congressional scandal, from ABSCAM to the massive fraud at the Congressional Post Office, whose membership includes former Congressman Bob Toricelli (finally run out of office due to criminal investigation), former President Bill Clinton (disbarred attorney), former Congressman Dan Rostenkowski (See Post Office above), Congressman Patrick “D.U.I.” Kennedy, Senator Ted Kennedy (criminally negligent homicide), former Congressman Cynthia McKinney (assulting Capitol Police), former Mayor Bill Campbell (Tax Evasion), former Governor Don Siegelman (public corruption), and the list goes on and on seek to lecture anyone about public ethics. The fact is that sadly as a human endeavor, politics is flawed as are the people engaged in it. Unethical behavior knows no political party or philosophy. It is an unfortunate fact of life that we must zealously guard against. But when you begin to invent it as part of the never-ending political campaign, you damage the system when it is actually needed to handle actual malfeasance.

    I will point out the difference in terms of what is tolerated from Republicans and Democrats. Duke Cunningham, Bob Ney, Mark Foley resigned their seats in disgrace and were shown the door by their fellow Republicans. Alcee Hastings, who was removed from his position in the federal judiciary after a felony bribery conviction, was elected to Congress. Bill Clinton, who everyone can agree perjured himself and obstructed justice more than Scooter Libby ever did–his fellow Dems threw a pep rally and continued to support him despite his contempt for the law that led to his disbarment and the remarkable boycott of the 2000 State of the Union by the entire United States Supreme Court.

    There is no scandal here in this story about U.S. Attorneys. The attempt by Congressman Johnson and others to invent one is shameful and will only diminish their credibility if and when their voices are needed on a genuine issue of public integrity.

    As far as the Plame case, amen to what Bowersville had to say. The fact that Scooter Libby is facing time in federal prison is a travesty and he should be pardoned immediately. And while Bush is at it, also pardon Compean and Ramos before they are killed in the federal prison they are currently residing in for doing their job as Border Patrol officers.

  18. Bobby Kahn says:

    Great editorial in USA Today. Pay particular attention to:

    Was the administration trying to stop investigations of powerful Republicans? There’s no hard evidence, but there’s one curious detail in the e-mail traffic about fired prosecutor Carol Lam, of San Diego.
    Lam started the probe that sent GOP congressman Randy “Duke” Cunningham to prison last year and resulted in the recent indictments of a top CIA official and a well-connected contractor. On May 11, the Los Angeles Times reported that the investigation resulting in Cunningham’s conviction was expanding to include another powerful Republican, Rep. Jerry Lewis, of California. That same day, Sampson e-mailed a White House aide asking him to call to discuss “the real problem we have right now with Carol Lam.”
    Congressional investigators might want to ask what that “real problem” was.

    http://blogs.usatoday.com/oped/2007/03/post_39.html

  19. bowersville says:

    If Hank Johnson, or any other member of the House Judiciary Committee has confidence in Shipp’s conclusion about David Nahmias not doing his sworn duty, then issue him a subpoena.

    Bring him before the House Judiciary Committee. Question him as to why he isn’t doing his job, as you see it.

    At least do something useful instead of crying foul at every move the POTUS makes. Damn, you have the majority, you have the votes, show some leadership.

    I don’t believe the left has the stomach to lead. They are satisfied to continue the same old Pelosi/Reid strategy of whine and hide.

  20. GAWire says:

    >>”””Great editorial in USA Today”””

    An oxymoron from an idiot.

    This day is full of all kinds misconstrued facts.

  21. GAWire says:

    Speaking of telling comments …

    “””There’s no hard evidence …”””

    From the lips of Bobby Kahn. What other insightful information do you have for us, Bobby? Next, you’re probably going to tell us your exit polls still show Mark Taylor ahead of Perdue.

    You’re full of all kinds of helpful insight.

    (Is “helpful” the right word here?)

  22. GAWire says:

    Speaking of “real problems”, Bobby. If we’re looking for the “real problem,” why don’t you tell us the “real problem” as to why the Dems literally have so little power in Georgia that many are questioning the actual existence of an organized Democratic Party in this State. Even your Dem congressmen that barely won are more closer to being conservative Republicans, so hell, we’ll just except them.

    What other insight do you have to offer? I can’t wait to hear it …

  23. bird says:

    Looks like the Rabid Right has got their voice back. Is Rush Limbaugh leading the charge here? I am amazed by the vitriol. And you are completely outside your mind if you don’t think the Pubs make a mountain out of a mole hill when it serves their interests. I.e., the Nancy Pelosi plane “scandal.”

    Bowersville and JRM make a nice tag team. Bowersville paints Scooter Libby as a citizen harassed by a federal prosecutor, whereas JRM points to Clinton, a “disbarred attorney,” as proof of the depravity of the Democratic Party. Hey, they both got convicted of perjury, which was the reason that Clinton was disbarred. So perjury is either unimportant or important, but not both. It cuts both ways gentlemen. And, Patrick Fitzgerald was much more responsible than Ken Starr in his prosecution.

    U.S. Attorneys serve to prosecute the laws of the United States. They do not serve to advance the President or the President’s party’s political ends. If you disagree, then you care more about Republicans gaining and keeping power than in the continued success of our great country.

  24. GAWire says:

    >>”””you are completely outside your mind if you don’t think the Pubs make a mountain out of a mole hill when it serves their interests. I.e., the Nancy Pelosi plane “scandal.””””

    Hey, we’re in politics too, here, so we can play the game. We just don’t have to use things like national security for our political attack strategies.

    Of course, we have it easy – our targets punch Capitol Police officers, hide embezzled cash in the freezer and stay drunk enough to crash their car into Capitol security barriers.

    Not to mention, we don’t have to stuff classifed national security documents in our panties to prevent our scandals.

  25. bowersville says:

    Clinton was never prosecuted by a Federal Prosecutor in Federal Court for perjury. If Federal Prosecutors serve to prosecute the law, why wasn’t Clinton prosecuted in Federal Court for perjury?

    If Fitzgerald’s investigation wasn’t about politics, it would have ceased when he discovered Plame wasn’t a covert CIA agent as described by Federal code, and you know it.

    Star is gone, whys Fitzgerald still hanging around?

    POTUS GW Bush should follow POTUS Clinton’s lead and fire all 93 Federal Prosecutors and start over.

  26. Bill Simon says:

    GaWire thinks that regardless of the law, concepts like right and wrong are open to interpretation, depending on who is sitting in the Oval Office.

    You are ONE majorly obtuse SOB, Wire. I cannot wait to find out who you are…as the lobbying firm you probably work for is probaby one of the most crooked in the state.

  27. Bill Simon says:

    Keep something in mind, Folks…when Jefferson was found with cash stuffed in his freezer, GaWire probably supported Denny Hastert in his protest of such an action by the Justice Department.

  28. bowersville says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but what testimony has been presented at trial or Grand Jury that proved Plame a covert agent under this code? None. At news conference, Fitzgerald referred to Plame’s position as classified, not covert.

    Your insinuation, by referring to mentioned code, assumes that Plame served covertly outside the US within the last five years. What evidence do you have that Fitzgerald doesn’t?

    Plame herself testified before Congress today that she was not an attorney and did not know her legal status.

    Fitzgerald didn’t bring any indictments against anyone for outing Plame. Either Fitzgerald didn’t professionally pursue his duty, or Plame was not a covert agent under the code. Take your pick.

    The first public information out on Plame was Novak’s column. Novak’s first source was Richard Armitage. Armitage also released Bob Woodward to speak to Fitzgerald, but not make it public. Richard Armitage has not been indicted.

    The bottom line is Fitzgerald did not find a crime under the code 426-4(A), yet continued the investigation.

    Today Plame testified that her husband, Wilson, was not recommended by her for the Niger trip. Funny, it has been commonly reported in the press that senior CIA officials have previously testified otherwise. Faulty memory?

  29. AlanSmithee says:

    I feel obliged to make some observations about GAWire’s rantings, and ask him a couple questions.

    You didn’t provide any substantive rebuttal to the USA Today editorial that Kahn linked to and excerpted. You just attacked the source (usually the sign of a weak position ).

    Putting aside your desire to attack the USA Today as a media institution, let me ask this:

    (1) Do you dispute that Kyle Sampson sent the referenced email to a White House aide on the date the editorial states?

    (2) If he did, do you think that raises questions of a potentially serious ethical lapse, if not outright illegality (like obstruction of justice)?

    (3) Do you think someone should ask the questions necessary to find out? You seize on the paper’s statement that there “is no hard evidence,” but isn’t hard evidence what an investigation is supposed to either find or determine that there’s none to be found?

  30. jkga says:

    Bowsersville-

    I don’t know every piece of the public part of Fitzgerald’s case, but my understanding is that she traveled to the Middle East in 2001, 2002, and 2003 ostensibly as an employee of her front company. That would qualify her.

    I’m not going to play the game of reading into every choice Fitzgerald made to prosecute or not prosecute.

  31. bowersville says:

    She contributed 1k to Gore’s POTUS run, under Valarie Wilson and her front company’s name.

    I understand her cover was blown to the Russians and Cubans on 2 separate occasions.

    Ask, how in the world did Armitage of State know enough about Plame to know she was employed by the CIA?

    Also, if Hayden, current CIA director, verified Plame was covert in a letter to Waxman, why didn’t the former CIA director verify the same to Fitzgerald.

    And if Hayden went to the CIA in ’05, how could he know Plame’s status prior to ’05? Probably an inquiry to a personnel clerk. If Hayden personally knew before ’05…..

    Courier to foreign embassies doesn’t count.

  32. jkga says:

    Um, the existence of a front company isn’t a secret. That’s why it’s a front. Batman would have put “Bruce Wayne, Wayne Enterprises” on his filing when he gave campaign contributions to Commissioner Gordon, right? Same thing here.

  33. bowersville says:

    I’ll concede the point on the front company name but Agent 006 was allegedly covert.

    The name, Valarie Wilson, is not a front.

    IMO, Val and the CIA were sloppy in protecting IDs. Too many knew. Hubby didn’t help when he released info to the MSM.

    Back to the object of this thread. The POTUS should set a directional policy for the DOJ.

    JFK directed RFK in pursuing civil rights violations. I don’t see a problem with that. I can’t imagine the state of this country if JFK had taken a passive position and not directed the AG and the DOJ.

  34. leftrightcombo says:

    During the 60’s the Kennedy administration, Bobby Kennedy A.G. Used political pressure and the threat of firing to pressure U.S. attorneys to prosecute violations of civil rights. Some decided to resign and others had to be fired. I am pretty sure in hind sight anyone could see that the POTUS having the authority to remove political appointees is a good idea. If Kennedy did not strongly insist that the political idea of civil rights be inforced using the law, where would we be?

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