Your daily drivetime update on the US Attorney Purge...
1. Fired Southern California USA Carol Lam: , Lady Monica remembers hearing lots of concerns about Lam's immigration and gun prosecutions, and doesn't remember hearing anyone voice concern about her investigation of Republicans (well, duh!). No link and no video, just my own eyewitness account.
2. Fired New Mexico USA David Iglesias: , Lady Monica doesn't know why Iglesias was fired.
3. Former Central California USA Debra Wong Yang: , Gonzales speculates in testimony that Yang would have made more money if the DoJ fired her, and maybe that's why former White House Counsel Harriet Miers wanted her gone. Ummm, yeah...do you ever get the feeling that Gonzales has just stopped trying?
4. Fired Western Washington USA John McKay: , Gonzales admits in testimony that he's not sure why McKay was fired, based on the admission that the time when McKay was added to the list preceded the time when McKay started having "problems" with Main Justice. Also, note towards the end of the video (about 40 sec left) that Gonzales slips a little- he starts to say "when I made the decis...when I accepted the recommendations." It's a little thing, and it's by no means evidence, but this little slipup tells us that Gonzales, in his own mind, did have some role in deciding on the firings. But we already knew that, didn't we?
5. Fired Arizona USA Paul Charlton: , Lady Monica mentioned that she had a role in putting Charlton, but I didn't catch/understand what her explanation of her role was. No link, I'm hoping to get more info on this once I review the transcript.
6. Fired Nevada USA Daniel Bogden: , Lady Monica describes the 11/27/06 meeting that decided Bogden's fate. Paul McNulty raised an objection to his firing, Sampson said 'we can do better,' and Alberto Gonzales said 'ok.' And that, apparently, was that.
7. Fired Eastern Arkansas USA Bud Cummins: , Murray Waas learns a little more about Cummins, Graves, Schlozman, and Mark "Thunder Thor" Hearne here. Muckraker also chimes in here.
8. Reassigned Guam USA Frederick Black: , James Risser looks into this in an extensive diary. Set aside some time if you want to read this.
9. Fired Western Missouri USA Todd Graves: , Murray Waas learns a little more about Cummins, Graves, Schlozman, and Mark "Thunder Thor" Hearne here. Muckraker also chimes in here.
10. Former Interim Western Missouri USA Bradley Schlozman: , Murray Waas learns a little more about Cummins, Graves, Schlozman, and Mark "Thunder Thor" Hearne here. Muckraker also chimes in here.
11. Former Minnesota USA Thomas Heffelfinger: , the LA Times sees a pattern with Heffelfinger's firing: the suppression (through "voter fraud") of Native American voters. Muckraker has a very good rundown here, and I strongly recommend reading it. As an aside, I still say Heffelfinger was pushed out, but Heff keeps denying it.
12. Minnesota USA Rachel Paulose: , from Lady Monica's testimony, Princess' conservative credentials helped her get the job (h/t eartha). Also, let's not forget that Princess and The Lady were friends while Princess worked at Main Justice (no link, just vague recollection)- did that affect Princess' chances? Probably. All of this really chaps my ass, and is probably one of the main reasons why the AUSAs under her demoted themselves.
13. Fired Western Michigan USA Margaret Chiara: , this NYT article has Chiara as a source for and a witness of Lady Monica's hyperpartisanship.
14. Eastern Wisconsin USA Steven Biskupic: , well, I think this settles the debate about whether Biskupic is a 'straight shooter' that acted in good faith (h/t Gareth G). Biskupic appears to have used his office as a political weapon to try and tar a Democratic governor in the runup to the midterm elections. Although Muckraker made a note of this article, Josh Marshall has not commented on this, after previously stating that he was withholding judgment on Biskupic. Josh is wrong. The amount of pressure and rough treatment given to Ms. Thompson was appalling, and it was all in the effort to get Governor Doyle, a Democrat. Enough. Biskupic is one of those USAs who did play ball with the Administration, and that's why he's still got a job.
15. District of Columbia USA Jeffrey Taylor: , this article here mostly focuses on Jay Apperson's history, but keep in mind that it was Taylor who ultimately hired him. In a vacuum, this odd hire (and its odd process) might mean nothing. But we're not in a vacuum. Taylor was a close aide to Gonzales before getting this USA job, he interacted with Main Justice frequently WRT hiring Apperson, and any hire he makes that is outside the normal screening process (as was the case with Apperson) deserves close scrutiny.
16. Western Pennsylvania USA Mary Beth Buchanan: , good lord, Buchanan was on The Purge List back in November 2006. Remember, she was consulted on the Purge. Jesus, what did she do, and what happened to take her off the list?
17. Alaska USA Nelson Cohen: , the DoJ picked this guy to be the Alaska USA over the recommendations of both Republican home state Senators Stevens and Murkowski (h/t TPM). What was so special about Cohen that the home state Republicans had to be overruled? The article hints that Cohen had a desire to return to Alaska, but that's not how these things are supposed to work. Home state Senators are supposed to have significant, if not complete, influence on who gets nominated to be a US Attorney. It looks like the DoJ in DC rode roughshod over the Senators' recommendations- why?
18. Central Pennsylvania USA Thomas Marino: , umm, okay...good luck? Marino is considering a run for Congress against Dem freshman Chris Carney. Personal opinion: if Marino ends up being more antiwar than Chris Carney, then let the Repubs have this one.
19. Northern Texas USA Richard Roper: , hat tip to James Risser for tipping me off to this story in his diary. Quite simply, what the hell's been going on in this office? They open an investigation into Novation LLC, and two of the Assistant US Attorney's (AUSAs) working the case suddenly die. Two months later, three other AUSA's in the Dallas office resigned, two to go into private practice, and one to retire. You'll note in James Risser's diary that he discusses the Western Missouri US Attorney's office, because there is a lawsuit against Novation by a company in that area (I think?), Medical Supply Chain. But I separate that out, because that's a whole other ball of wax. If strange things happen after a US Attorney's office opens an investigation into Republican targets, however, then I get interested. And with the Dallas USA office opening a (according to the NYT link) "broad investigation" into Novation/Tenet and other health care and pharma giants, I'm interested to see where that investigation headed, and if/why it was suppressed.
20. New Jersey USA Chris Christie: , God, Christie was on The Purge List back in November 2006. A Bush Pioneer was going to be fired? So, what did he do to get on The List, and what happened to take him off The List? FWIW, Christie sounded pissed. What a mess.
21. Middle North Carolina USA Anna Mills Wagoner: , WaPo confirms again that Wagoner was on The Purge List, and she stayed on The List until Lady Monica deemed her gun prosecutions to be good enough to stay. Whatever. Also, some local support for Wagoner.
22. Connecticut USA Kevin O'Connor: , does this mean Mr. O'Connor is a "loyal Bushie?" And why must we insist on absentee US Attorneys?
23. New Hampshire USA Tom Colantuono:
24. Former Western North Carolina USA Robert J. Conrad, Jr.:
25. Western Kentucky USA David Huber: , Huber was on The Purge List back in February 2005. Huber doesn't know why.
26. Southern Mississippi USA Dunn Lampton: , Lampton was on The Purge List at some point in time. Note how McClatchy implies the same thing I've implied: that his high-profile prosecution of a Democratic donor may have saved his job. To be fair, Lampton "doesn't have a clue" as to why he was considered for the ax. In that same article, also note how home state Senators Lott and Cochran leave Lampton twisting in the wind, expressing no real support for him. Huh.
27. Northern Florida USA Gregory Miller: , Miller was on The Purge List as early as February 2005, and stayed on the list right up until the end. Why was he on The List, and how did he get off The List?
28. Former Interim Colorado USA William J. Leone: , Leone was on The Purge List at some point in time. Also, let's note that Leone was not given the permanent job, and was passed over for a Federalist Society member and former employee of Abramoff's former law firm, Greenberg Traurig. Huh.
29. Maine USA Paula Silsby: , Silsby was on The Purge List as early as February 2005, and stayed on The List for a long time. Why was she on The List, and how did she get off The List?
30. Former Southern Alabama USA David York: , York was on The Purge List back in February 2005. Why was he on The List, and how did he get off The List? UPDATE Remember that York was replaced by Deborah Rhodes, who was one of the DoJ staffers that played a role in The Purge, if memory serves me. Just throwing it out there.
31. Southern West Virginia USA Karl "Kasey" Warner: , Warner was on The Purge List early in 2005, and was then fired in August 2005. So I guess Warner wasn't bulls--tting- he really was part of the Purge.
32. Middle Georgia USA Maxwell Wood: , Wood was on The Purge List at some point in time, and according to the McClatchy piece, his name was added just weeks after reports of "voter fraud" in the district were discussed in Washington, DC. Wood essentially has no comment.
33. Western Virginia USA John L. Brownlee: , Brownlee was on The Purge List sometime in 2006, and according to McClatchy, for the same reason that Wood was added- "voter fraud."
34. Northern Oklahoma USA David O'Meilia: , O'Meilia was on The Purge List back in February 2005. I have no idea why.
35. Delaware USA Colm Connolly: , Connolly was on The Purge List in November 2006. Who called this one? Was it James Risser that told us to look at Connolly? Whoever called this, take a bow.
36. Wyoming USA Matthew Mead: , Mead was on The Purge List back in January 2006.
37. Kansas USA Eric Melgren: , Melgren was on The Purge List back in January 2006.
38. Former Middle Tennessee USA James K. Vines: , Vines was on The Purge List back in January 2006.
39. Former Nebraska USA Michael G. Heavican: , Heavican was on The Purge List back in January 2006.
(as far as I can tell, no news)
- The Schloz is getting a thorough vetting by the media in advance of next week's testimony.
- Timothy Griffin, Cummins's "interim" but intended indefinite replacement, is out as of June 1. Because of the closing of the Patriot Act loophole, he wasn't going to last through this fall anyway, and there are rumors that he's going to be working for the campaign of some Republican actor that wants to play President. So long, asshole- don't let the door hit 'ya where the good Lord split 'ya.
- Alberto Gonzales faces the possibility of being disbarred. While it's nice the New York Observer gave some inches to this possibility, we should all remember that there are a few DailyKos diarists who have been calling for that for awhile. I'm thinking of clammyc specifically, but I think there are some others who have been calling for that.
- Goodling Transcript here.
- Impeach Gonzales. Please sign the petition.
- drational has created a database of all the DoJ emails from the document dumps.
- Washington Post created a very useful graphic of the who, how, and when of The Purge List. Please note that this is not comprehensive- I only counted 23 USAs on that graphic.
- Muckraker has built a little on Washington Post's graphic, and turned it into a document collection.