It’s Not A Scandal Unless There’s A ‘Monica’ Involved

Ken AshfordAttorney Firings, ConstitutionLeave a Comment

And now we have one. Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales’s senior counselor, Monica Goodling, yesterday refused to testify in the Senate about her involvement in the firings of eight U.S. attorneys, invoking her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. The letter sent by Monica’s attorneys explains the reasons why.  But here’s the thing: none of the reasons pertain to self-incrimination.  You … Read More


Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

White House Press Secretary Tony Snow, 10/6/06: Members of Congress have their own oversight obligations. They may proceed as they wish. They’re a separate and co-equal branch of government and I’m not going to tell them what they can and can’t do. White House Press Secretary Tony Snow, yesterday: There’s another principle, which is Congress doesn’t have the legislative — … Read More

Document Diving & Latest On Purgegate

Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

A lot of people following the U.S. Attorney Firing Kerfuffle are doing a lot of document diving — i.e., going through the documents and emails released this week by the DOJ (over 3,000 pages) to look BEHIND what the news will tell you tomorrow. Time doesn’t permit me to review documents myself, but for those interested, the documents are now … Read More

More “Purgegate” Fallout

Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

God, I hate myself for using the -gate suffix.  But I don’t know what to call it right now (does anybody?) Anyway, WaPo has a nice op-ed which stops just shy of calling for Gonzales’s head.  My favorite bits: "I am fully committed, as the administration’s fully committed, to ensure that, with respect to every United States attorney position in … Read More

Gonzales Uses The Passive Deflective Voice

Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

"Mistakes were made", he says, in reference to the US Attorney firing scandal. Weasel words, if I ever heard them. Of course, in the same press conference, Gonzales says he stands by the firings.  But he also fired the guy who did the firings, his chief of staff. So, all in all, it’s a little hard to parse.  If I … Read More

Prosecutor Firing Scandal Widens

Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

Background here.  [UPDATE: An even better background — in the form of a timeline] And this past week, Attorney General Gonzales denied that there was any political involvement relating to the firings of the U.S. Attorneys. But today we learn differently: The White House was deeply involved in the decision late last year to dismiss federal prosecutors, including some who … Read More

The Latest Bush Scandal

Ken AshfordAttorney FiringsLeave a Comment

If you’re not up on the newest scandal involving the Bush Administration, here’s a primer from The New Republic: Senators at a Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday tried to get to the bottom of whether the Bush administration inappropriately fired eight federal attorneys for political reasons. If so, the GOP plan has backfired: at least two Republican lawmakers could be mired … Read More