Monday, April 02, 2007

Bigger than the US Attorney scandal

Digby has written a good article about the extraordinary extent to which BushCo has "populated the Justice Department with dirty tricksters in extremely sensitive jobs". As I alluded in my last post, there really are no ethical limits to what BushCo is willing do in serving its own corrupt goals.

Many of us were told to pipe down when we complained that the Justice Department and the NSA had been involved in spying on Americans with no oversight. But now that we know that Barbara Comstock, Monica Goodling and Tim Griffin, Karl Rove's personal smear artists, were promoted to the highest reaches of the federal police agencies with access to records on their political opponents and every other American, then it's clear that we weren't suspicious enough. At this point, I think we have to assume that with these people in charge and having the use of all the new powers of the Patriot Act, there have been no limits at all on the partisan, political use of the government's investigative powers.

I am no longer confused about why Monica Goodling took the fifth. I have little doubt that there are many crimes that took place and she's not taking any chances. This is bigger than the US Attorney scandal.
The WaPo reports:
No other administration in contemporary times has had such a clear pattern of filling chief prosecutors' jobs with its own staff members, said experts on U.S. attorney's offices. Those experts said the emphasis in appointments traditionally has been on local roots and deference to home-state senators, whose support has been crucial to win confirmation of the nominees.

The pattern from Bush's second term suggests that the dismissals were half of a two-pronged approach: While getting rid of prosecutors who did not adhere closely to administration priorities, such as rigorous pursuit of immigration violations and GOP allegations of voter fraud, White House and Justice officials have seeded federal prosecutors' offices with people on whom they can depend to carry out the administration's agenda.


"If we have eight U.S. attorneys dismissed because they were not 'loyal Bushies,' then how many of the remaining U.S. attorneys are?" asked Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.), borrowing a phrase that Gonzales's former chief of staff, D. Kyle Sampson, used in an internal e-mail to describe criteria by which prosecutors were chosen to be fired.


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