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Bloomberg News is reporting that

Monica Goodling, at the time an aide to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, sobbed for 45 minutes in the office of career Justice Department official David Margolis on March 8 as she related her fears that she would have to quit, according to congressional aides briefed on Margolis's private testimony to House and Senate investigators. The aides spoke on condition of anonymity.

This story has not been written about tonight, so I thought it ought to be told, for historical if for no other purpose.

James Rowley of Bloomberg News is reporting that (h/t chuck@tpm):

Monica Goodling, at the time an aide to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, sobbed for 45 minutes in the office of career Justice Department official David Margolis on March 8 as she related her fears that she would have to quit, according to congressional aides briefed on Margolis's private testimony to House and Senate investigators. The aides spoke on condition of anonymity.

The date of March 8th is quite significant in the time-line:

It is the day after Alberto Gonzales' editorial in USA Today that claimed the firings were simply "an overblown personnel matter". And, a day after Peter Domenici confirmed his call to Iglesias.

And, two days after Daniel Bodgen, Paul Charlton, Bud Cummins, David Iglesias  Carol Lam, John McKay, and William Moschella testified before Congress...

Back to the article from Bloomberg:

Margolis recalled that he was stunned to learn the extent of White House involvement in the dismissals, congressional aides said. Margolis testified that preparation for McNulty's Senate testimony -- which took place more than a month before his meetings with Goodling and Sampson -- was based on the assumption that the White House only became involved at the end of the firing process, the aide said.

McNulty told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Feb. 6 that the White House's only involvement was that presidential aides were informed of the decision before the U.S. attorneys were told. Charles E. Schumer, the New York Democrat leading the Senate investigation into the dismissals, has since said that he believes McNulty may have been misled by Sampson. Margolis testified that Sampson didn't explain why he hadn't disclosed the consultations with White House Counsel Harriet Miers and other White House aides nor did Margolis ask him, the aide said.

I WANT THIS BINDER:

After Sampson left his office, Margolis testified that he went toward McNulty's office to inform his boss and stopped because Sampson had already gone into the room carrying the binder filled with White House e-mails, the aide said.

------
UPDATE: The diarist drational has a recommended diary explaining/introducing David Margolis that really fills in the blanks on why Ms Goodling may have chosen his office for her breakdown.

In that diary, there is a link to a fascinating Legal Times profile of Margolis. I find this section most appropriate in answering the questions below--mine being one of them!--why Ms Goodling chose this man's office:

MR. CLEAN

Margolis cut his teeth as an organized-crime prosecutor, and he often uses mob analogies in talking about his career at the Justice Department. When asked by an incoming attorney general what his job duties entailed, Margolis responded: "I’m the department’s cleaner. I clean up messes."

The analogy calls to mind the character of Winston Wolfe, played by Harvey Keitel in the 1994 film "Pulp Fiction." In the movie, Wolfe is called in by mob honchos to dispose of the evidence after two foot soldiers accidentally kill a murder witness in the back of their car. But Stephen Trott, who served as Margolis’ boss in the Criminal Division during the Reagan administration, sees Margolis’ role slightly differently.

"Margolis is the guy who comes in and makes sure the brains don’t get splattered all over the car," says Trott, who’s now a senior judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in Boise, Idaho. "He keeps people out of those situations."

Tags: Monica Goodling, David Margolis, Paul McNulty, U.S. Attorneys, Daniel Bodgen, Paul Charlton, Bud Cummins, David Iglesias  Carol Lam, John McKay, William Moschella, Alberto Gonzales, Peter Domenici, Organized Crime

Originally posted to james risser on Fri May 04, 2007 at 09:36 PM PDT.

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