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Specter vs. Gonzales -- Round 1

Less than a minute into his questioning, Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) snapped at Attorney General Alberto Gonzales in an exchange that didn't bode well for Gonzales and his much ballyhooed make-or-break testimony in defending his role in the dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys.

The unexpected attack from the committee's top Republican immediately put Gonzales on the defensive.

Specter told Gonzales his opening statement about his involvement in the controversial firings continued "this same pattern of not being candid," and that it was still unclear whether the attorney general was directly involved in the process or just delegating authority. When Specter derisively noted how much time Gonzales has spent preparing for the hearing during the past two weeks, the attorney general snapped: "I prepare for every hearing."

Sparks then flew.

Specter, who has so far resisted calling for Gonzales's resignation, apparently didn't like being interrupted, and bristled at the tone of the attorney general's voice. So the Pennsylvania Republican began mocking Gonzales's performance at a March 13 press conference in which he said he had not been involved in "discussions" nor seen any "memos" about the firing plan. Those statements have now been clearly rebutted by the thousands of pages of documents the Justice Department has released.

"Were you prepared for that press conference, were you prepared for that press conference?" Specter said. Then, as Gonzales tried to answer, Specter kept interrupting, his voice growing louder. "What I'm asking you is, were you prepared for that press conference?"

Specter cut off Gonzales before he could fully answer, moving on in his questioning with one final dismissive remark: "I don't think you're going to win a debate about your preparation."

And that, in the first two hours of testimony and questions and answers, was the sharpest give-and-take. It's doubtful one small exchange would be determinative in Specter's view of whether Gonzales should retain his post. But in a hearing in which Gonzales is trying desperately to shore up his support among Republicans, and fend off calls for his resignation, it was an ominous start. If Specter sours on him, other Republican senators are likely to follow.

Other early highlights from the first two hours of the hearing:

* Gonzales's strong rebuttal to suggestions from Sens. Herb Kohl (D-Wisc.) and Russell Feingold (D-Wis.) that prosecutors politicized an investigation into a gubernatorial aide in Wisconsin. He accused the Wisconsin senators of attacking well meaning career prosecutors, declaring: "What does that say to that attorney general, to that local prosecutor, to the career prosecutors?" Earlier, he told Kohl:: "This is not about Alberto Gonzales. This is about what's best for the Department of Justice. ... The work of the department continues."

*Gonzales specified for the first time the date - Oct. 11 -- that President Bush told him of concerns about a lack of voter-fraud prosecutions by David C. Iglesias as U.S. attorney in New Mexico. He also said that Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.) had complained multiple times about Iglesias' prosecution record, but specified that it was about a lack of prosecution of "public corruption cases." Five days after Bush spoke with Gonzales, Rep. Heather Wilson (R-N.M.) called Iglesias about his handling of a public corruption case in Albuquerque. And less than three weeks after the Bush conversation with Gonzales, Domenici called Iglesias about the Albuquerque case. On Nov. 7, a new firing list emerged for U.S. attorneys and Iglesias' name appeared for the first time.

*Two days after recusing himself from the Ethics Committee's examination of Domenici's role in the Iglesias firing, Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.) was given permission by Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to sit in on the hearing at the dais. He's not on the committee, but Salazar -- one of two Hispanic Senate Democrats -- has been an ally of Gonzales in the past. He introduced him at the January 2005 confirmation hearing for Gonzales.

By Paul Kane  |  April 19, 2007; 12:30 PM ET
Categories:  Hearing Watch , Senate  
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Comments

Gonzales' list of carefully-parsed generalities tells all we need to know. The man is barely mediocre and hopes to brazen through this, and it's not going to work. On to Rove.

Posted by: Chris Fox | April 19, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Just so i completely understand this - you made the decisions but don't remember making them, you had the meetings but don't remember attending them and you spoke to Rove and Bush about the firings but you don't remember what you said. I hope you remember how to create a good resume' - you're going to need one.

Posted by: mrrgjb | April 19, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

This has been some of the best television I've seen in years! The Attorney General has done everything but get up and leave, to avoid answering simple, direct questions. Far from clearing up the confusions surrounding the apparent contradictions of his many statements, the AG has made it clear that he has no intention of providing either candid or accurate responses to tough questions from Senators of either party.

Sen. Hatch has taken on the role of apologist, asking questions clearly designed to try and alleviate some of the growing contradictions in Gonzales' testimony. This doesn't, however, seem to be helping
.
What I find to be most ironic about the AG's testimony is that he repeatedly uses the phrase "I just want to make it clear to the American people that..." whenever he is asked a question that he either doesn't want to, or is unable to answer candidly.

If Gonzales' job wasn't so incredibly important, this would all be very funny. Unfortunately, the ability of the American people to believe that the interest of Justice is the primary motivation behind the actions of US Attorneys, has been, and continues to be, undermined by an Attorney General who would rather hide behind semantics, than face responsibility for his failures. Thats not funny, its tragic!

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 19, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

It's obvious that the reported did not, in fact, listen to the entire two hours of testimony. He was probably rushing to get the report written and it's dishonest to say that he's covering something he clearly hasn't seen. As one who actually DID watch, it was Schumer, not Specter, who really provided sharp, even devastating, questioning. Feinstein was also excellent.

Posted by: Terri | April 19, 2007 1:19 PM | Report abuse

It is difficult to believe ( and I do not) that an official as important as the AG would not "remember'the specifics of a key meeting with white house staff about firing employees. He was meeting with Karl Rove, the assistant to the President.... If he does not recall that, what does he?

Posted by: eric | April 19, 2007 1:22 PM | Report abuse

How many prosecutors did Clinton let go? It is an at-will occupation, folks, subject to the discretion of the Commander in Chief. Will there be an investigation into Clinton's firings (93 total, I believe)? There is no story here, except that socialists love to create corruption to show that liberty is flawed.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 1:23 PM | Report abuse

All roads in this particular fiasco lead tø the White House. We might as well hire the Three Stooges to further run this nation into the ground. At least there would be some sense of irony. Where are Moe and Curly when we need them?

Posted by: rmanuto | April 19, 2007 1:24 PM | Report abuse

As a resident of Utah, I'm deeply ashamed of the moral retreat of Senator Hatch to a political defense of the indefensible.

Posted by: Porter Rockwell | April 19, 2007 1:24 PM | Report abuse

this whole show by Gonzales is ridiculous and dishonest. Clearly Carl Rove policies are dominating.

Posted by: Oota | April 19, 2007 1:25 PM | Report abuse

At the lunch break, I heard Sen. Leahy say, "There are too many of them to through them out." About the audience. Very funny!

Posted by: Dianne Reeves | April 19, 2007 1:25 PM | Report abuse

How can a guy who can't remember, can't recall, but says he wants to "make it clear" that he is responsible and not the department, keep his job? I think the AG has made it clear he should resign.

Posted by: Lisa | April 19, 2007 1:25 PM | Report abuse

So where the smoking gun prosecutions they were working on? There is none. They did not want to clean up the dead off of the voter rolls before the election so they were fired! Good for the US. Also not pursued by the Clinton administration was child porn on the internet-- a major priority of this administration. Also not pursued by the Clinton administration "sex slaves"-- another major priority of this justice dept. busting 30 different sites in the US. So yes the president and his administration can pick priorities and yes these prosecutors are to follow those priorities-the freed sex slaves - and children subject abuse I am sure are thanking god for that.

Posted by: New York | April 19, 2007 1:29 PM | Report abuse

How can you best cover up incompetence, ignorance and perhaps, unlawful acts? Easy - just ask good people to believe you are a dullard and not the brightest bulb in the lamp. Then you simply rehearse two weeks of lie-telling so that it appears to be second-nature recollections. When all else fails, you dont remember or recall. Its Watergate redux, ad nauseum.

Posted by: David W | April 19, 2007 1:30 PM | Report abuse

It's not that this Administration is filled with liars, war criminals, political operatives and blind idealogues.

It's that they're not even good at it.

Posted by: Max | April 19, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

So Lublubs, how many shots of wiskey did it take you to come up with that brilliant observation? The only people creating corruption and stealing liberty are youe beloved Republicans.

Posted by: voice_of_reason | April 19, 2007 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Re: Lublubs
George W. Bush also replaced all 93 prosecutors at the start of his second term: this is not any more unusual than appointing a new 93 when coming into office. However, mid-term dismissals have been few and far between, generally based on very poor behavior or qualifications (throttling a reporter, biting an exotic dancer...) and not so transparently both politically punitive and cronyism-based reward, now that K-street is on its last legs. The original suggestion floated by then chief council /was/ to fire all 93 to, well, mask what was being done.

Posted by: PK | April 19, 2007 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Enough with the 'Clinton fired all 93...' crap. He replaced them, Reagan appointies all, upon taking office. These cannings occured in the middle of the term in order to help turn the DOJ into an arm of the RNC. Turn off Rush, put down the Kool-Aid, and rejoin the reality based community.

Posted by: Vegan Militia | April 19, 2007 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Will there be an investigation into Clinton's firings (93 total, I believe)?

That's a great - but thoroughly discredited - Republican talking point.

Too bad Clinton - like Bush and nearly every other president in modern history - fired nearly all the US attorneys at the beginning of his term in office. What is not so common is firing so many US attorneys in the middle of a term of office, especially without providing a valid reason (the story keeps changing) for doing so.

Posted by: John S. | April 19, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

This is more about the lunatic left praying on the political ignorance of the American people than it is on any firings. The prosecuters serve "AT THE PLEASURE" of the President! They can be hired AND fired for ANY reason! THEY ARE POLITICAL APPOINTMENTS YOU IDIOTS! Once again the Democrat party, fully in control of mainstream media, shows us all that they are truly the party of the ignorant.

Where were you dems when your GOD, Clinton, fired all 93 of the Federal Prosecuters? Bush fired only a handfull and it's news? Don't get me wrong about the womanizer Clinton, he had every right to fire them...they are political appts afterall, and a President can fire them at will.
Time and time again we see the Democrats "making up stories" and getting away with it. Easy to get away with, when the vast majority of your followers are politically ignorant.

-s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

In response to Lublubs: the fact that United States Attorneys serve at the pleasure of the President is irrelevant to the issue here - in fact, it's fairly common for new administrations to clean house upon assuming power. The problem is that Gonzales has changed his story a number of times about why these particular USAs were fired. It's a fair question, then: does the fact that his story has changed indicate a reason for Congress and the people to suspect that something fishy's going on?

Posted by: Jim | April 19, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

What does it matter? The President could have fired these guys simply because they might have had bad breath! I think Congressional Dems and Rinos are on a Witch-hunt. Give it a rest Spector!

Posted by: Arthur | April 19, 2007 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Easy to get away with, when the vast majority of your followers are politically ignorant.

I think the irony of dutifully repeating RNC talking points that do not comport with reality will be lost on someone like you.

There is a little known axiom called Tim's Law that predicts that as an online discussion about Republican malfeasance grows the ratio of thoughtful analysis to "Clinton did it!" approaches 1.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 1:40 PM | Report abuse

I luv Uhmereekah and I luv Senor Alberto Gonzales.

Posted by: Pedro | April 19, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

re: s4c
Political firings to appoint underqualified individuals and basing those firings on political loyalty in following a baldly partisan agenda rather than prosecuting in a manner consistent with the administration is the issue. It is all well and good to expect DOJ personnel to toe the line on administration identified priorities (i.e. actuall illegal behavior) however, being a Democrat is not (yet) a criminal offense, nor is failure to pursue such an agenda a grounds for dismissal.

Posted by: PK | April 19, 2007 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Investigation into Sandy "Burglar" Berger?
Investigation of Sen. Dianne Feinstein using her committee post to award husband int'l jobs?
Investigation of Clinton's pardons?
Investigation of Murtha's bribes?
I digress. It all doesn't matter. The point is: Bush bad, Europe good. Carry on with your America-hating fetish.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

The White House has been using Justice to carry out Political prosecutions. When are we going to reopen these cases.

Posted by: dont forget | April 19, 2007 1:44 PM | Report abuse

If Gonzales really cares about what is best for the Justice Dept, he will resign immediately. His evasive answers and vague statements today have been a further blow to the credibility and level of trust that Americans have in that department and in the Bush Administration. Justice Department lawyers must be cringing with embarrassment and disgust at the lack of competence and integrity exhibited by the AG.

Posted by: Robert Walter Truman | April 19, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

I agree with a previous blogger that Alberto Gonzalez was at best mediocre when he served Governor George Bush in Texas. Look at the justice handed down in Texas and mediocre performance and loyalty to W was all that was required when Bush ruled the roost in the Longhorn State. Since riding into DC town, Gonzalez and Bush have found it difficult to play by the rules, thus the carefully crafted moves by top administration officials to blame others for failure of leadership at the top. Gonzalez is a carbon copy of the hand-picked cronies who have refused to be accountable for their own actions.

Posted by: Tom in Huntsville | April 19, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Re: Lublubs
Vitriol is not a proper substitute for a substantive argument. Clinton and crew /were/ followed by many many attempts at prosecution and investigations, one in particular lest we forget Ken Starr and his voluminous report. Or how about Iran-Contra, if we wish to discuss administrations flirtations with the law.

Posted by: PK | April 19, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Lublubs is trying to change the subject. First he trots out the "clinton" fired 93 card, then when called on it runs away to vague accusations not relevant to the issue at hand. Gonzales is yet another failed Bush crony. Let's get Rove under oath and see where this leads.

Posted by: KC | April 19, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I don't think that Alberto Gonzalez or the Bush Administration did anything wrong by replacing the Attorneys. It is clearly within the President's perogative to replace them at any time for any reason. But I have never thought that Alberto was a good choice for Attorney General and overall, his incompetent performance has left me longing for the days of Janet Reno (and for a conservative like me, that is saying a lot). This latest incident where Alberto managed to bungle something that was entirely proper and turn it into a major scandal and catastrophe just puts a finishing highlight on his undistinguished career. It is time for him to go but I hope the fight lasts for another couple of months because it will be harder for the President and the Congress to push through an amnesty for illegals while this fight drags on. Better that they remain deadlocked.

Posted by: jackbenimble | April 19, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

The word is "substantiative".
Can someone please call the UK, Germany, and Syria? Does AG Gonzalez stand up to the global test? Surely, we won't unilaterally fire this man, despite his "obvious" corruption.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Just ignore the people with the "Clinton 93" argument. It has been explained in terms a first grader could understand. They apparently cannot. More likely they are just following the talking point script and hanging on to that sinking anchor. They are as disabled in logic, reason and common sense as the Bush people seem to be in memory of significant events. Pitiful creatures. By the way, perhaps we should just rush all these "I cannot recall" people in to some mental institution for medical hold, observation and evaluation. It seems some weird brain disease is going around the whole administration. Since they can't remember anything they are probably medically unable to continue their function.

Posted by: Ray | April 19, 2007 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Even if the "Clinton did it too" argument was both honest and relevant instead of obviously disingenuous, it would be a dumb argument to make. Repubs never stop criticizing Clinton for his behavior ... except when they try to use him as a standard of behavior for their own people.
.
If you're trying to make your guys look good, don't go saying that they behave just like someone that you've spent years trying to vilify.

Posted by: Bearpaw | April 19, 2007 1:53 PM | Report abuse

s4c - stop with the left, dem comments. You would vote for a piece of cabbage if it was on the Republican ticket - you are the reason why this corrupt administration still exists. Give the actions of this govt. an honest, neutral evaluation - see what your conscience tells you - you think they are all people of intergrity? Try putting country bfor party - try it once you might like it.

Posted by: don | April 19, 2007 1:53 PM | Report abuse

It seems that Attorney General González has problems in recalling much of anything. I wonder if he can recall, what his responsibility to the United States and the U.S. Constitution is. The questions put forth to him by the senators including members of his own party were quite clear and straightforward. I think the American people would appreciate that he would answer in a clear and straightforward manner. Diogenes walked all over ancient Greece with a lantern in search of an honest man if he were to do this in DC. Not even Exxon would have enough oil to fuel his lamp.

Posted by: rcc | April 19, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

s4c, it would be helpful to actually read what others have posted prior to ranting.

I am more disappointed, though, in the selctive memory of everyone who testifies before congress. If I didn't remember stealing from my local gas station that means no wrong doing took place, right?

I honestly can't remember certain things about the college classes I took in years past, but I did take notes. These notes will jump start my memory and I can begin to recall conversations, discussions, and specific material. My point is that Gonzalez has extensive notes, reports, etc. and he's admitted that he's reviewed it. I find it hard to beleive he has amnesia. The specific dates aren't even that important. If his mind is this bad he should be fired regardless if any wrongdoing took place.

Posted by: skoorb | April 19, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

I will admit a certain crime that AG Gonzalez has committed: one at which he did not back up the authority vested in him. It is very typical of the administration to cower under the pressure of socialists: "...but, I mean, I didn't sit in on a meeting...err, uhh." The truth remains that the prosecutors serve at the president's discretion. AG should have said that from the start.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Tim's law, is it?!
:)
I've definitely made many observations that lead me to believe that Tim's law is alive and well.
To Terri: since the subtleties obviously escape you, Mr. Kane emphasized Sen. Spector's exchanges with the AG, because Spector is a Republican. Its hard to imagine anyone reading this article and not comprehending that.

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 19, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Don't count your chickens before they're fried. Not everything is as it seems.

Posted by: interested party | April 19, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Another Bush lackey being fed to the wolves to protect Karl Rove. Maybe Karl can serve up Bush to save his butt the next time. Would probably be the best thing for the country and the world.

Posted by: MBM | April 19, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Alberto Gonzalez has shamed the legal profession, Hispanics around the country, and this administration in particular. What a pathetic excuse for an attorney general! Of course, because of his unquestioned loyalty to Bush and Rove, he rose like a meteor to the level of Texas Surpreme Court Justice. As a Texan, an Hispanic, and a lawyer, there are no words to describe the level of disappointment, and outright shame this man has brought to the Justice Department. Que Verguenza! Of course, when he leaves, I'm sure Baker Botts or anyone of the silver stocking lawfirms in Texas will hire him back...after all, they know a good lapdog when they see one.

Posted by: Yolanda Jurado Gesswein | April 19, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Nominee for brain-dead Republican lackey of the day: Lublubs.


Posted by: hank | April 19, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

...how hard can it be to understand what's been written here, and is fact: US ATTORNEYS SERVE AT THE PRESIDENT'S PLEASURE AND CAN BE FIRED FOR ANY, OR NO, REASON AT ANY TIME! Like it or not, Bush got elected and reelected and has the right, the obligation, to appoint executive branch employees to pursue the agenda upon which the administration was elected. Hatred for Bush, unlike anything I've ever seen, including Nixon, has rendered the pack of snarling dogs on the left incapable of rational thought.

That said, Gonzales handled the firings ineptly. He should have simply fired them for their failure to support the policies of the President whom they serve, and left it at that.

Posted by: good lord people... | April 19, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Bearpaw: the point is not moral equivalency (i.e. Clinton was corrupt, therefore corruption is legal..). The point is that firing prosecutors is legal, just as Clinton acted within his jurisdiction.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

If i'm hired to do a job and my boss thinks i suck... I get fired. Thats what happened here. These prosecutors serve at the pleasure of the President and if he wants them removed... away they go.

Was it handled stupidly? Sure. Why not just come out and say, I dont like the job their doing, I'm the boss and they're fired. Done deal. Then we wouldnt have congress wasting even more of our money with these stupid hearings.

You cant compare what Clinton did and this event. They arent the same. But you also cant support Clinton and his what the definition of is is and then say that Gonzalez was supposed to remember everything out the other side of your mouth. Politicians spin.. thats what they do. I swear this whole country is filled with Kool-Aid drinkers on both sides and a bunch of petty bickering punks in the government on all fronts.

I'm bored. Lets sack em all.

Posted by: timo | April 19, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Yolanda: When a caucasian is put on trial, does he shame the entire white race? Cut the racism and see the man as a man, subjected to the same God-given rights. Socialists foam at the mouth to attack minorities in this administration.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Maybe I came in late but it seems that this is about Al G. He has lied from the start and has performed a huge dis-service
to all of his employers. "US". When I have an employee that lies, stonewalls and can't
seem to remember his or anyone elses actions. I fire him. These problems arise because they are allowed too.

Posted by: SOBO9999 | April 19, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Touche, Timo.

Well said.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

re:lublubs

Why is questioning Gonzalez and current admin of DOJ anti-american, pro-Europe? From my recent readings, the DOJ has been remarkably well run, professional, and un-politicized for the past 30 years through both Repub and Demo admins. Retired 30+ years DOJ official Daniel Metcalfe says it was run well under Ashcroft too, then went bad under Gonzo. Seems very American to demand competency and fairness and transparency and to promote meritocracy over cronyism. I bet Europe's equivalent institutions run more like Gonzo's DOJ than what America has been lucky to have the last 30 years. Love America, love checks and balances, love open-hearings, love law and justice, go America.

Posted by: kankan | April 19, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Gonzales should update his resume' ASAP. Maybe he can get a job working for Tom DeLay?

Posted by: victor mickunas | April 19, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

This conversation is true liberalism at its finest. You guys do it so well. Let me see if I can get the formula:
1. Make up story (lie).
2. Tell it a million times.
3. Our ignorant base will believe it
4. Scandal is created.

Here's an idea. Since you guys hate America so much...why not leave? Why stay in a country that you hate?
My goodness you have your very own Speaker (pelosi), trying to set foreign policy with our enemy! It was so bad, that other countries had to have immediate press conferences to denounce everything she was saying. THATS A SCANDAL! In fact, it's called treason. The dems have done a great job in making "I HATE AMERICA" into a viable Party slogan.

Again, a President can fire appts to any post. The only thing the Prez is doing wrong here is allowing Gonzalez to testify...in yet another Democrat banana court.

Dont you guys have a global warming seminar to go to? (or did the blizzard cancel it again?) Or Isn't your spokesman Rosie O'Donnell on at this time...you should be getting your I HATE AMERICA dose from her at this very moment. Go watch a Michael Moore film or something. Oh wait hes in Cuba telling everyone how their medical system is better than ours..LOL.

You guys are killing this country...why did I laugh? It really is sad...You dems are a Cancer on our country and slowly, oh so slowly you are destroying us with your morally bankrupt liberal ways.

-s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

I'm an unaffliated voter, not subject to party bias or tantrums, yet I wonder what role the Federalist Society played in this issue?

Posted by: David in Colorado | April 19, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Lublubs must be a high school prankster...surely no adult is that stupid. And surely Lublubs knows that "substantiative" is not a word.

Posted by: plutarch | April 19, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The AG is simply a disgrace to the American people and not to mention Latino Americans. This is simply yet another example of this administrations incompetance. He should resign immediatly and atleast try to save face. This entire case has been politically motivated and it's ridiculous to continue to compare it to Clinton in 93. Rove should be next.

Posted by: MAF84 | April 19, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Firstly, one has to seriously question Mr. Gonzales' cognitive memory capability for performing the office of AGOTUS. If he continues to forget as much as he had a hard time recalling in today's testimony, then the nation has an opportunity to make a significant improvement in the Justice Department by replacing him.

Secondly, what is emerging is a picture of the AGOTUS who was being actively undermined by his senior staff, who in turn openly believed that the White House called all the shots at the Justice Department, and so, began to regard the AG as irrelevant. In particular, you see this behavior in the policy decisions, where Gonzales appeared unable to reign in his staff, who simply went to the true power center of Rove's office for leadership. This also explains the resignations of these very senior advisors, whose loyalty was not to Gonzales, but to Bush. Perhaps in working with him closely, they quickly realized what kind of a spineless sychophant he really was, while their circumvention of his directives demonstrate the weak, ineffective leadership that has characterized Gonzales' tenure.

Posted by: AgentG | April 19, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Can't wait to seem see clips from this on one of those "America's Dumbest Criminals" shows.

Posted by: RH | April 19, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

What many seem to be missing is the real impetus for the firings. Changes the Bush administration introduced to the Patriot act allowed them to replace the fired Attorneys without Congressional scrutiny. The idea was to put in political cronies without any oversight. That is the real scandal. I suspect that if the Democrats had not taken Congress, we may have seen many more replacements than the few they thought they could get away with.

Posted by: Geoff | April 19, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

I love how the Bushies keep trying to change the subject with their platitudes about how "Clinton fired US attorneys too".

This is about a lying, incompetent Attorney General. Kinda like the lying, incompetent Secretary of Defense you all loved so much.

Worst presidential administration ever!

Posted by: Carl | April 19, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Lublub has a point!! An idiotic party line, show no curiosity. Yes, as Karl Rove stated, Bill Clinton fired all 93 prosecutors. Hmmm, oh yes, at the beginning of his first term. How many did he let go during his second term? I'll bet Hannity didn't tell you. Vomit up the Kool Aid, Faux News is doing you no favors.

Posted by: J200 | April 19, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Isn't "I can't remember" the same lame excuse Scooter used? It seems to me that these people are either liars or idiots. If you kept giving your boss that excuse, youd be out on the sidewalk. Honestly, think about your day to day work...who doesn't talk notes and write things down at the very lease as a CYA. These are supposed to be astute political animals, the top of the breed at this point in time (as pathetic as that is) certainly they should be able to know how to maneuver in this type of environment. You can also bet you bottom dollar that if it was them on the other side of the questioning or if the outcome for them didn't look so bleak, they'd have a mountain of evidence. The same goes for Rove...does anyone honestly expect us to believe that he "accidentally" erased years worth of e-mails? Do these people honestly believe that the American public is that stupid or are they playing to Lublub and s4c and their ilk. If I were them I'd be asking myself :dude, where's my party"? I thought Republicans were all about law and order.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I dont know if the firings were correct or not. It really does not matter. The AG comes off as hopelessly incompetent. His incompetence alone should be reason to fire him.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

How many more lies can the Repub"lie"cans offer up in their endless defense of their ineptitude in all matters? The embarassment of continuous bungling is only surpassed by the lack of concern and outrage on the part of most Americans. Can 2008 get here soon enough?

Posted by: Robert | April 19, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

If the president uses his power to fire only attorneys that prosecute members of his party, we no longer live in a democracy, we live in a single party state, and whether that is the socialist party, the republican party or even the democratic party, the corruption will increase until the whole government collapses. I don't want that to happen, so the AG must go.

Posted by: Steve Harrington | April 19, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

How do you replace the AG for incompetence when it has become increasingly clear that the President doesn't KNOW anybody competent.

Posted by: CS | April 19, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Who cares about what Clinton did? That was a decade ago or more. Do you excuse your current mistakes with others from your past?

Come on, let us Americans leave the Manichean BS behind and strive for a singular nation that defends freedom, even if it means bringing our leaders down, no matter who they are or what party they subscribe to.

Posted by: libertarian | April 19, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

You guys are killing this country...why did I laugh? It really is sad...You dems are a Cancer on our country and slowly, oh so slowly you are destroying us with your morally bankrupt liberal ways.

Perhaps you should leave the United States, then. There are a few countries out there that seem to be a better fit with your right-wing authoritarian viewpoints (see: North Korea, Iran).

Posted by: John S. | April 19, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

why isn't anyone asking alberto if we were to apply the standards of performance for the US attorneys to himself, it would he should go for competence in addition to political reasons. He constantly repeats he cares more about the Justice Departments than himself and that the career employees run the place, so why is it so important he stays vs bringing in "fresh eyes" like they did with Gates

Bottom line, everyone needs to sacrifice for MC Rove.h

Posted by: elliot | April 19, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

"The President could have fired these guys simply because they might have had bad breath!"
True, but he didn't. He fired them because they weren't prosecuting enough Democrats, or that they prosecuted Republicans. Thats why it matters.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

> Once again the Democrat party, fully in
> control of mainstream media, shows us all
> that they are truly the party of the
> ignorant.

Yeah, that Sen. Arlen Specter is the last bastion of pinko-commie leftist liberalism.

~sigh~

Posted by: Tom | April 19, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Plutarch:
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/substantiative

Nothing to be embarrassed about. "Substantiative" is probably a new word for you.

Posted by: Lubs | April 19, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

The fact that I am a conservative will surpise you.

This guy has to go. He is a crony. Bush is a RINO. Gonzalez derelict in his duty.

There are bar associatiions that would probably disbar the common lawyer for the types of crap this AG is doing... it is clear he can not be the leader of justice in this country.

His stance on illegal immigration alone is proof he does not stand for the rule of law, even Chertoff puts on a better mime act when it comes to enforcment than AG.

Posted by: Conservative | April 19, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

all you that are blasting him for not answering questions.. how about your princess hillary saying she "has no recollection" of anything ANYONE asks her

Posted by: bbrain | April 19, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

The bottom line? Gonzales is integrally unqualified to hold the job of an Attorney General. He's never been anything but political chum to lure Hispanic voters. The Peter Principal is alive and well.

Posted by: Javier | April 19, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

What's with the repeated defense of 'the president's pleasure'?

Don't Republican apologists realize that the President is held to a higher moral standard? In other words, there are things that should simply not please the President - ANY President.

Look at it like this - if there were a law that said the President could club baby seals 'if he felt like it' how many people would accept an episode of violent clubbing because 'the law allows it'.

People, the law is the BASELINE for moral conduct, not the high point. Let's not forget what started this whole mess - it was the DISHONEST statement that performance was the reason for the dismissals.

The president could have said "these folks aren't in line with my Administration's political agenda, and I'm exercising my right to remove them because of it." That would have reflected on the fired AG's beliefs, not their competence. The President, in turn, should be enough of a stand-up guy to defend his political choices, instead of smearing the abilities of those more competent than himself while allowing a sucker like Gonzales be the fall guy he was hired to be.

Also, please don't call me a Democrat or a Communist - the only belief I've advocated here is the principle of high moral conduct and standing up for what you believe in. If those beliefs automatically make me one of the 'enemy' in the eyes of die-hard Bush supporters, you should consider what that says about yourselves.

Posted by: Lexington | April 19, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

To good lord people: you say US Attorneys could be fired for ANY REASON at any time? What if we had emails showing that the President wanted only some US Attorneys fired because he hated people of their race?

Posted by: snarling dog | April 19, 2007 2:26 PM | Report abuse

It may be that Attorney General González is paying the price for the arrogance and failures (and that is putting it very mildly) of this administration. However, as Nancy Poulos, he said there is a new sheriff in town as well as a new attitude in the United States. The days of giving the administration carte blanche and rubberstamping anything that comes out of the puppet Masters heads (Rove and Cheney) are gone. Gonzalez has decided to use the old tactics that are about as effective as horse is against armor. The fact of the matter is, if he committed a crime or not may be debatable. However, the fact that he is incompetent is indisputable. It is bedtime for Gonzo!!!

Posted by: rcc | April 19, 2007 2:26 PM | Report abuse

"Specter cut off Gonzales before he could fully answer, moving on in his questioning with one final dismissive remark: "

Obviously inaccurate reporting.

Gonzalez was patently avoiding answers.

Specter cut off Gonzalez as he began yet another round of finger pointing, false apologies, forgetting, denying, and mewling. Specter simply didn't have the stomach for hot air in response to simple questions.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

To be honest, I wish all those here and out in America will hold both sides accountable... not be so beholden to one party or another.

They both lobby. They both cater to K street. I vote one way or another since we all know 3rd parties dont win, but... this guy is junk and needs to go.

Clinton was unethical. Bush is unethical. Where is a leader who is worth following in this country anymore? Or at least someone who is accountable when they happen to be wrong.

Its so sad.

Posted by: Conservative | April 19, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Well put, Lexington.

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 19, 2007 2:29 PM | Report abuse

look, quit stating that the president can fire whomever he please. Sure, legally he has that right. But a lot of things that are horrendously unethical aren't illegal. It doesn't mean its right. A lot of things bush has done have been wrong and not illegal. Reason being is that its universally accepted, as an unwritten law or just common sense, that said action is unethical. Its expected, with good reason, that no one who has the public trust would cross certain unspeakable lines.

This situation may be such a point. Prosecutors hold so much sway over the American public and the political situation. They maintain democracy by flushing out corruption from the political spectrum and keep us safe and stable through the strong arm of justice. If justice becomes partisan then no one is safe. If one's political situation is now prosecutable then no one is safe. Democracy suffers when we do not have the stability of government and security within our effects to not be prosecuted for political reasons. Every American should have faith in the justice system. Without that faith, we are not free.

Posted by: sciguy | April 19, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

This is to the people who keep discussing the fact that "Clinton fired 93 U.S. Attorneys".

It's not the same thing. A President is certainly entitled to redo the Justice Department on a wholesale basis, or not. What is not acceptable is the President firing someone so he can control whether or not someone else is prosecuted.

This administration, including the AG, seem to have no understanding of the concepts of separation of powers or constitutional rights.
http://www.dontbealemming.com

Posted by: Lemming Herder | April 19, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

I could've sworn those people worked for the president and at his discretion. He is their boss, so he can fire them and hire them. Do you libs want me to go slower?

Oh by the way, I still don't know why Specter still has an (R) at the end of his title.

Posted by: Big Al | April 19, 2007 2:32 PM | Report abuse

How can you even believe what this reporter wrote when it was Schumer and not Specter who was slamming the AG?. I agree that Gonzalez needs to come clean, but that tirade of Schumers was nothing more than that of a playground bully. I was a Democrat for 25 years, and outbursts such as that are one of the reasons I left the party and will never return. The Democratic leadership is flawed from Dean to Pelosi on down. They offer no clear cut plan for America other than more hearings, raising taxes and demeaning our President. Shame on them all...Shame on them all.

Posted by: Matt Anderson | April 19, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

The Democrats have been too busy working to politicize and bash at the Republicans. Yet when Democrats engage in similar actions, it's ok. 93 U.S. Attorneys were fired when Clinton served as President. I'm not angry nor do I hold any resentment.

Folks, Bush purged only a few. But here's what the Democrats are doing. Why was the hearing postponed? The Democrats may say it was due to VT; however, the honest truth is they were scared of not receiving enough media attention. Democrats along with certain republicans, are to blame. Rather than for the country, their agenda is too self-centered. Clearly, they do not represent the people's wish and I as a Californian support Gonzalez.

For the people complaining why Gonzalez is not providing direct statements: Why the hell would he self-incriminate? Yes, he recalls, think so, etc. It's because the extreme leftist will make any concrete statement and twist it to their favor. Gonzalez is smart, and for the first Latino to receive the Attorney General, I find it highly admirable.

I SUPPORT GONZALEZ. HIS POLICIES HAVE BROUGHT JUSTICE AND MORE IMPORTANTLY, SHOWED THE WORLD THE U.S. IS AND ALWAYS WILL BE THE LAND OF OPPORTUNITY.

Posted by: Peter | April 19, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

dear Mr. Lublubs: this odd little sentence displays an alarming ignorance of common political practice:

"How many prosecutors did Clinton let go? It is an at-will occupation, folks, subject to the discretion of the Commander in Chief."

A few presidents, Republican and Democrat alike, have exercised their discretion to keep or to let go any or all prosecutors. It's not relevant to the debate. The assertion that there were covert, targeted firings intended to swing elections or to reward cronies is relevant; the assertion that Gonzales has been evasive and misleading is relevant.

Either assertion can be proved or disproved--hence the hearings; neither can be dismissed by recourse to an irrelevant factoid.

Posted by: Semantor | April 19, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

The techniques of apology fascinate me. Gonzales' statement "I regret how they were treated, and I apologize to them and to their families for allowing this matter to become an unfortunate and undignified public spectacle. I accept full responsibility for this." is wide of the mark. This particular strategy is catching on. Another example would be Rep. McKinney's alleged apology "There should not have been any physical contact in this incident. I am sorry that this misunderstanding happened at all, and I regret its escalation and I apologize." What is missing and what is absurd is the Kabuki of it all. The core of a real apology is a statement that I, me, the person talking or writing did this specific thing. Underscoring this with emphasis along the line of 'this action, statement or decision was a mistake when it was conceived' is always a plus. This is then followed by a forthright, straightforward, stand up in your britches 'and I apologize to those specifically or generally harmed or offended.' The relative sorrow of the individual is irrelevant. The acceptance of complicity and compunction make up a true apology. 'Mistakes were made...' is not an apology. Gonzales is supposed to be a good man and an intelligent one. He should know these things. His statement is weasely and insipid.

Posted by: Buddesatva | April 19, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

This is not about what past Rep or Dem presidents have done, and it's not about whether USAs are appointed and can be let go for any number of reasons -- it has to do with the fact that Gonzales lies, and lies constantly, and it has damaged not only his own credibility (which he seems thoroughly intent on improving), but the reputations of public servants, and the integrity of the DoJ. His lackluster performance as AG would hardly be defensible as mediocre even without a scandal, but now it's just embarassing. He lied to the American people through the press multile times, this man doesn't know what the truth is, what he said, what he did, because he's a careless twerp who should thank the president for keeping his kids in braces.
His performance, and that of his staff, has been a monsterous, no, abysmal failure.
...Allowing 30 yr olds with no first-hand experience make judgements on the so called loyalistic job performances of seasoned attorneys - how dare they? Where were all the adults when this was going on?
For treating other people's professional lives like a game, for being disrespectful of the offices they held and represent, they should all - with shame - resign and end this maddness.

Posted by: Genna | April 19, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

bring on the Obamania! do you think it's time for qualifications to trump ideology?
i expect that all the court-packing in the world won't get an acquittal on charges of malfeasance and incompetence rife in this administration. Politics are by nature an airing of opposing ideas. Fine. Since when has one group of Americans decided the patriotic thing to do is disenfranchise another group of Americans? The carping will not cease until the cancer of abuse of power is tolerated. I'm mad as hell and i'm not going to take it anymore...say it with me America.

Posted by: Cass Kunst | April 19, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

there has never been a scandal here; there never was. The dems are just abusing the power oversight to stir up partisan bias against the AG. They still haven't found any wrongdoing in all the pages of email's etc, all they can do is argue that gonzales didn't explain himself well, when in fact, he never did anything wrong!!!

Posted by: pete6982 | April 19, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

"Nothing to be embarrassed about. 'Substantiative' is probably a new word for you."

Attrrbuting an incorrect definition to a word is no less ignorant than creating a word from whole cloth.

The word "substantive" has a wholly different meaning that "substantiative." It is particularly comical that lublub demonstrated his idiocy by attempting to "correct" a poster. The comedy is only heightened by lub's attempt at erudite sarcasm.

Posted by: tocs | April 19, 2007 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Specter did a great job. Excellent questioning.
See, that is what you get from being a prosecutor for many years... Gonzales didn't stand a chance...

Posted by: Barb | April 19, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Don, you ask "put country before party"? I AGREE. Can't believe a dem just said that...Im shocked. But I am curious, were you putting country before party when:
1. Sandy Berger was stuffing his pants with Top Secret documents?
2. Dick Durbin compared our troops to Nazi Stormtroopers?
3. Ted Kennedy said Hussein ran prisons better than our soildiers?
4. Hillary called our President a Plantation Owner?
5. Pelosi traveled to Syria attempting to establish foreign policy? (An act of treason by the way)
6. Clinton was sleeping with everything that walks, including his 20 year-old intern?
7. Clinton fired all 93 federal prosecuters in order to get THE ONE in Ak that was looking into his "buisiness".

Curious brother...were you so concerned then? The Dems with their CONSTANT never ending HATE SPEECH against this President, this Country, and the troops that serve this country, has done more damage to our way of life than the terrorist could have ever attained. The worst enemy this Country has ever seen is the current Democratic party. For the first time in our history, a Un-American political force has garnered mainstream attention and power. We dont call them terrorist, we call them Democrats. And what is most sad...is that the blind that follow them have absolutly no idea the damage they are doing. The common democrat is either too ignorant to understand the threat we face, or they understand it...and HOPE that it will finally be the downfall of thier greatest nemesis...the United States of America.

-s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Big Al writes:

"[Democrats] offer no clear cut plan for America other than more hearings, raising taxes and demeaning our President."

Democrats have been remarkably circumspect about hearings so far; and not having been in control of either house for a few years renders the point absurd on its face.

Republicans, meanwhile, have raised taxes and grown the deficit, which will have to be paid for by... more raised taxes. Republicans are demonstrably more fiscally irresponsible than Democrats; they are, however, more adept at convincing the rank-and-file--who want nothing more than the security of uncritical belief--that their enemies are dangerous, and legion.

The president has done a fine job of demeaning himself on any number of occasions.

Posted by: Joe clark | April 19, 2007 2:38 PM | Report abuse


For those saying the Democrats are stupid for pursuing this:

How come the Democrats are winning, then?


The Bush administration is not guilty of wrongdoing on this, what it is guilty of is gross incompetence.

Since the Democrats have been able to establish a political atmosphere where hearings that are essentially for investigating the competence of the administration are considered appropriate, they hold all the cards.

Because, the Bush administration's goose is cooked if it is required to prove that it is competent.

Posted by: lance | April 19, 2007 2:39 PM | Report abuse

i think albie should be allowed to keep his job 'cos he's so damn cute! [pass dem pills]

Posted by: limborg rushing | April 19, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

To s4c and Lublub
While I can admire your efforts to defend your chosen party, I would ask you to honestly confront yourselves with the following question: "How would I feel if a Democratic administration had done this?"
In other words, what if (gasp) Clinton (double gasp) had directed the firing of Federal Prosecutors because they refused to use their offices to cripple the (sing hosannah) Republican Party?
Stop putting Party over Country, before we lose our freedoms altogether.
Oh, and by the way, I criticize America because I love it so much- if I hated this country, I wouldn't give a d**n what it did.

Posted by: Jabberwocky | April 19, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

The United States Attorneys have three statutory responsibilities under Title 28, Section 547 of the United States Code:

the prosecution of criminal cases brought by the Federal government;

the prosecution and defense of civil cases in which the United States is a party; and

the collection of debts owed the Federal government which are administratively uncollectible.

So, it matters why these people were fired.
The issue is not about whether they "serve at the discretion" of the president.
That is a legal expression of his procedural capacity to hire and fire them. We all can (should) understand that.

What matters is if a president or his staff use these attorney positions for political gain. They are PUBLIC servants, not presidential servants and that is a very important distinction.

Prosecuting, or not prosecuting, to influence elections in favor of one party or one individual is wrong. Firing people to obstruct justice is probably illegal, at least if there isn't a Bush appointed justice hearing the case.

So, administratively speaking, they can be fired for getting out of bed on the wrong side, but legally the president and his staff cannot obstruct justice or prosecute people for political gain.

You Bush apologists should be up in arms about this if it is true. It is sinister. Where are your values now?

Posted by: Ricktay | April 19, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

You do all conservatives a huge disservice to align yourself with those that doubt global warming. Your only accomplishment in doing so is to make your already questionable opinions that much more ridiculous. Global warming is a scientific certainty so put down your copy of State of Fear and go read something based on careful meticulous research, you might even learn something.

Posted by: Re: s4c | April 19, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse


In response to s4c:

Yes, the Democrats have a lot to answer for.

However, so does Bush. And, as President, he is the one that has been doing the most to undermine our nation and its security.


It is entirely justified to criticize Democrats.

It is entirely unjustified to defend our misguided President.

The best thing for America is a politically neutered President until a new one takes office after the 2008 election.

That minimizes how much more damage Bush can do to this country before he's out the door.

Posted by: lance | April 19, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse

For those repeated the Republican talking point:- "The prosecutors serve "AT THE PLEASURE" of the President!"- so he could do anything he wanted to. It is not true at all. There is a certain limit to that rule. How about tomorrow Bush suddenly declares he wants to fire all the women or African Americans in the office? You can fire people with no reason but you are not supposed to fire people with the wrong reason! What if the next Democratic President fires all the Republican DAs only and replace them with the Democrats, would you repeat that silly mantra? Please use your brains before repeating something silly.

Posted by: Dan | April 19, 2007 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Here we go again. Another Bush crony is getting grilled while contending that s/he's misunderstood and/or innocent and still competent to do the job. It seems that Gonzalez should form a mutual support group with Wolfowitz and Rumsfeld (and a few others) so they can deal with the truth of the matter: That they're bumbling, opinionated, arrogant and incompetent at the jobs big daddy Bush appointed them to. Come to think of it, maybe Bush should be part of that mutual support group too...

Reading what I just wrote is sad, because I'm an independent with a strong Republican tilt. If somebody told me I'd write something like this even three years ago, I would have laughed at the idea. And I'm sorry for not calling Bush "Mr." or "President." He just doesn't deserve the respect. The only thing that cheers me up these days is that Clinton was no better.

Posted by: Yawning | April 19, 2007 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Semantor: would you agree that one runs for the presidency in the hopes of implementing one's agenda, guided by his or her convictions? Or does one run for the presidency to "reach across the aisle" and compromise his beliefs? Your ignorance is this: a verbal reasoning for the firing of an at-will EMPLOYEE paramounts the liberty to fire that at-will EMPLOYEE, at will!

Posted by: Lubs | April 19, 2007 2:45 PM | Report abuse

BTW, Has'nt Karl Sampson conspired to misuse certain provisions of the Patriot Act? And isnt that illegal?

Posted by: clicky | April 19, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Mickunas,

It is perfectly fine to stay here in our beloved United States and object strenuously to the bone-headed operations conducted by this administration, and I shall.

Treason is when you swear an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and then do your damnest to gut it with Signing Statements and Executive Orders, or call it "quaint" and draft secret memos authorizing torture, and not to leave the Congress out of this, pass unread bills such as the Military Commissions Act of 2006 that obliterated amongst other things, Posse C.

Unlike many in the US, I take what this administration has done to the Constitution very damned seriously.

Perhaps you might pause to research and reflect on just how much this administration has done to gut our hard won liberties, rights, our long term safety in a world which now very much dislikes our beloved US, and what little remained of our moral ground after Nixon (Cambodia), Carter (sweaters), Reagan (Nicaragua), and Clinton (ahem).

Or perhaps you will never pause to consider any of these things this administration has done as anything other than perfect.

As a species, it is possible that we no longer have the luxury of waging war over large areas of the world as we used to. Armaments are very powerful and very easily procured now, by anybody who cares to use them. Asymmetric war is the way of things now.

Certainly, as a conservative, I want to conserve our national resources, and apply them to defensive works here, rather than funnelling billions, maybe trillions, into large and wasterful military and pork projects overseas. We may go bankrupt within five years (have you looked at M3 lately?) or convert to the Amero. What do you think will happen when Mexico's largest oil field runs dry in 2008 (which it will), and the Mexican government collapses and our border is overrun? These are precarious times, more so than most choose to acknowledge.

We may be about to lose what our nation's fathers paid dearly for to secure. A question is, what does each of us see that is beautiful and what shall each of us do to protect and defend that.

Calling the Constitution "quaint" doesn't fit anything I know about our national heritage.

We are all here a very short time, and time is precious.

Posted by: rob | April 19, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

I dont understand the significance of these firings is it because the president did'nt like the outcome of the november elections or what is the basis of these firings and why are'nt we hearing more the prosecutors who were fired? I'm not being sarcastic, I feel uninformed.

Posted by: chris g | April 19, 2007 2:47 PM | Report abuse

For the 100th time, yes, the President can appoint whomever he wants. But for the 100th time, that is not the issue. The key points here are: 1) most of those fired were Republicans, not democrats, so this isn't about partisan firings; 2) they were fired because Karl Rove did not feel they were loyal to the President and without a change, the President may lose some of his base support; 3) instead of being straightforward about what happened, Karl Rove and company threw up a smoke screen of lies to protect something that really wasn't the issue; most notably the AG's bungled statements about his involvement.

So the issues being pursued by Dems & Repubs alike is 1) "Why the lieing"? (a question of ethics) 2) Did the AG respond according to the manner expected of someone of his position? (a question of competence) 3) Do we really want an Administration leading this country that so blatantly skews decisions that effect EVERY AMERICAN according to Presidential loyalty (a question of civics)?

When John Bolten was on the Daily Show, he contended the President is reponsible to those who elected him, which is crap; he is responsibile to AMERICANS, notONLY his voting base of Republicans. The position of this adminisration is that the Justice Department should be responsible to the President first, and Americans second. This is not a legal issue, but it is an insight into this leadership that all Americans have a right to know about so they can make informed decisions at the polls. Since when is believing that the power of our country is in the hands of its INFORMED citizens and NOT the President or Congress or the Justice Department being a socialist? That BS needs to go away.

It is the empty rhetoric of all those who support a President over the Country that is taking this nation into a new civil war - hopefully this time without the bloodshed. This is why many of the founding fathers wanted an executive branch of several members, and not just one person - the president - trying to play the role of King. Unfortunately, with this administration, those fears have become reality - we have a self-proclaimed royal throne now calling all the shots. Guess they got that part wrong; we need a committe of executives - a Board of Directors if you will - to lead this country. If the Iraq Study Group were in charge, for example, we'd be moving forward as a united country, not a divided country, IMHO.

In short, for all those that want to blame anyone but the administration for these investigations, remember what took Nixon down - not the crime, but the arrogant conviction of the Nixon administration to operate in secrecy and behind a veilof lies and half-truths. We did not stand for it then and we should not stand for it now.

But alas, no one has the balls to take Bush, Cheney, and Rove to the mat and end their political careers, for the good of everyone.

In closing, how any Republican can say this is a witch hunt when they went after Clinton for denying he had sex with "that woman" is a laughable stance. At least this has some bearing on the way our country is being governed; a wet cigar in a woman's mouth has been and always will be of no importance.

Wake up folks - we're Americans, not Bushes!!

Posted by: JoCat | April 19, 2007 2:47 PM | Report abuse

to Yawning
"Clinton was no better" (?)
Let's look in the treasury. Anything there?
Let's look at our standing in the world.
Race relations? Crime? Corporate Greed?
Infant mortality? Foreclosure rates? Prison population? (we can count the secret prisons too i should think.)
Laughable.
See Bush in the history books in 5 years or less as "Worst President ever."
no contest.

Posted by: Cass Kunst | April 19, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I think it is pretty clear the Mr. Gonzalas from the start was pretty removed from the process of firing these attorneys. He delegated this whole business to his chief of staff. Mr Gonzalas simply took these recommendations and accepted them.

If Mr. Gonzalas was involved then he has been lying or misleading the committee. He cannot seem to recall any conversation regarding this. Even the meeting that reviewed the final list of firings.

Either way, this demonstrates that Mr Gonzalas is just another talking head undeserving of his appointment and should be removed.

Posted by: Kevin | April 19, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Very well put Ricktay. I personally believe Gonzales was picked for that position because the current administration knew his weaknesses all too well.

Posted by: Javier | April 19, 2007 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Most of you have the stories of who "fired" whom & when mixed up. I'm not blaming you, as the media does a very poor job of clarifying this; in fact, they often get it wrong.

United States Attorneys (USAs) are appointed for 4-year terms. For various reasons (for ex. a USA becomes incapacitated or leaves voluntarily before her term is up), the 4-years terms aren't all "synchronized" to each other - they're all over the calendar.

The typical practice of most incoming presidents when the White House changes from Dem to GOP of vice-versa has been: Appoint new USAs of the new President's party as the 4-year terms of the sitting USA's expire. George W. Bush followed this practice.

What was unusual in the 1st Clinton administration is that he replaced *all* 93 USAs within 2 or 3 months of taking office, rather than waiting for their various terms to expire.

What happened in the current situation is that as some of the USA's terms were expiring in 2005 and 2006, the White House decided to see if they wanted to replace ("firing" is actually an inaccurate and loaded term) some of them.

So to me, the bare fact of *replacing* 8 USA's at the end of 2006 does not seem at all nefarious. Since many in Congress have called foul, we now obviously need to go through an investigation. As a lifelong Democrat, however, I am sorry to say that many on the Dems side appear to have a theory that they are trying hard to prove, rather than to just let the facts speak for themselves.

Posted by: SRosenbach | April 19, 2007 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Jabborwocky you say: "How would I feel if a Democratic administration had done this?"
In other words, what if (gasp) Clinton (double gasp) had directed the firing of Federal Prosecutors because they refused to use their offices to cripple the (sing hosannah) Republican Party?

But they have friend. And you know it. Clinton was very corrupt...and we didnt have to make up scandals to prove it. The facts proved it. We didnt have movies full of deciet and lies by M. Moore blasting him every second. We NEVER criticiszed our troops, and certainly NEVER called them Nazis. We NEVER went behind Clintons back to try an undermine his policies to foreign countries...as pelosi has done. We dont OWN the mainstream media that day in and day out spews out hatred and lies and is hell-bent on destroying this country. All these things YOUR party did...not mine.

Dont get me wrong here jabber. You guys have won. Conservativatism as a movement is dead. I admit defeat. It is hard for people to live on morals and values, and to have princliples that guide thier behavior. It is much easier to be lazy...blame everyone but yourself...and think that if it wasnt for the Great Satan USA then all my problems would be solved.

You guys have created such a cancerous environment (Moore, O'Donnell, Kennedy, Durbin, Pelosi, Reed, Dean, MRS Clinton) and the list just goes on and on and on. Nothing but vile garbage spews from your party. No ideas...No fixes...just more vile garbage. But again, you have the party of the uneducated...so you win. I just pary to God (GASP) (he said pray to God) (RUN !!!). I just pray to God that you guys wake up one day and understand that NO Country can survive when its political process is attacked with lies and vile garbage every single day. It just can't. The damage is done. You guys have succeeded and you should be congratulated. You have started the destruction of the greatest Country this world has ever seen.

s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Why didn't Imus think of the "I misspoke" excuse???


Posted by: Do-Over | April 19, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"Curious brother...were you so concerned then? The Dems with their CONSTANT never ending HATE SPEECH against this President, this Country, and the troops that serve this country, has done more damage to our way of life than the terrorist could have ever attained. The worst enemy this Country has ever seen is the current Democratic party. For the first time in our history, a Un-American political force has garnered mainstream attention and power. We dont call them terrorist, we call them Democrats. And what is most sad...is that the blind that follow them have absolutly no idea the damage they are doing. The common democrat is either too ignorant to understand the threat we face, or they understand it...and HOPE that it will finally be the downfall of thier greatest nemesis...the United States of America."

s4c - You're one sick puppy. God bless you - you need it.


Posted by: JoCat | April 19, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse

s4c-

Get with the times, pal. Every single post of yours is all Clinton, all the time. The guy has been out of office for nearly seven years. Get over it.

This topic concerns Alberto Gonzales, not Bill or Hillary Clinton. If you have something to say about that, fine. Otherwise take your Clinton screed to another thread.

And if you are so concerned about the fate of America, run for office and do something about it. Otherwise, get to the back of the wingnut bus with your 'liberals are destroying America' nonsense.

Posted by: John S. | April 19, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

It seems to me that the "Republicans" label ALL Democrats as "Liberals", "Socialists", "Immoral" etc. as if that itself was enough to defend their arguments. Some of this administration,s policies are more liberal, socialist, and immoral than most administrations. This administration is not "Republican", it is a horrible offshoot group that is interested only in advancing policies that take away our rights and throw it in our faces. When you true "Republicans" finally stand up and take your party back, you might finally gain the respect your party deserves.

Posted by: teacup | April 19, 2007 3:05 PM | Report abuse

What continually amazes me is that the entire Bush administration are not only incompetent, but intellectually inferior (commonly known as "dumb"). Compare Gonzales' defense to that of Bill Clinton or Bill Gates in court. Clinton and Gates were also evasive but they succeeded, whereas Gonzales failed miserably. In fact, this guy Gonzales is just so stupid, think about it, if from the very beginning, he had said "I'm totally involved in the firings. But the administration has every right to fire any US attorney", and stuck to his guns, instead of telling a casual lie of him not being involved in the process, all this mess would have been avoided. Gonzales is such a stupid idiot. I think just for his low IQ, he should concede his Attorney General position to a smarter person.

The other amazing thing is how people these days think the American public is stupid. I mean, does Gonzales really think that the American people are going to buy his crappy defense? What's he smoking?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if "We the People..." could demand an amendment to the Constitution that says something like: "No political party shall influence the policies of the United States of America." In effect, perhaps, we could outlaw party politics and move forward as independent, free citizens!

Posted by: David in Colorado | April 19, 2007 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I'll try to make this simple for everyone, including this threads whipping boy, Lublubs.

The US Attorneys were fired for political reasons. No one doubts that. The problem lies in the fact that the Bush administration tried to cover their unprecedented mid-term firings by claiming that the US Attorneys were fired for poor job performance. The Administration had the right to fire at their convenience, but they chose to smear the US Attorneys with wholly unsupported performance claims in an incompetent attempt to cover their political motives. This is why Gonzales has been so evasive. It's sad that our highest ranking law enforcement official has become another fall guy for Karl Rove.

History won't be very kind to W.

Posted by: flatlander | April 19, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

"I just pray to God that you guys wake up one day and understand that NO Country can survive when its political process is attacked with lies and vile garbage every single day. It just can't. The damage is done. You guys have succeeded and you should be congratulated. You have started the destruction of the greatest Country this world has ever seen."

s4c - absolutely pathetic. Get out of yor black and white world and get an education. You know as much about this country as you do about God - absolutely nothing. It's quite humorous in fact.

If I didn't know for a fact the God lives in you, I'd throw the same rant back at you. But I live the principle that "what ou do unto the least of my brothers." So my love goes out to the Christ in you - maybe someday you'll let that light shine through you instead of hiding it behind you ignorant hatred of others.

Posted by: JoCat | April 19, 2007 3:10 PM | Report abuse

For those who are blindly supporting this govt. - please take a look at their track record - libby - plame, rumsfeld - iraq, cheney - halliburton, brown - fema, New Orleans, wolfowitz - iraq wmd, world bank, gonzo - attorney firing. How much more proof do you need? They are all incompetent or dishonest. And Bush continues to defend them. The only credible person in this govt. - Collin Powell - left years ago. Check out the rise in prices for gas, milk, bread from the last 3 years??? Rove is driving a "divide and rule" strategy. Stop this left / right, dems / repubs, conservative / liberal finger pointing. Judge people by what they have done and not by who they are. One of the biggest reasons that the US is the greatest country on earth is our unity. The last 6 years have divided us like never before. Wake up and impeach this incompetent, dishonest, divisive regime.

Posted by: don | April 19, 2007 3:11 PM | Report abuse

My 2 observations here.

1. Yes, the president has the right to fire or hire his US attorneys. However, he, the Attorney General and his secretive inner circle cannot OBSTRUCT justice and interfer with their work. Please don't use Clinton as an example again. He fired almost everone right off the bat and that is pretty much across the board. Now that is a clean cut firing and other presidents have done it. However, you just don't fire somebody who you just gave a good review for his job performance.

The whole sorry affair sure has a stench to it.

2. Why is it that we have to hate our country just because we do not agree with Bush about the way he runs thing. It is exactly because we care and love enough about this country that we want to fix things that are terribly wrong. Don't you think some people are extremely arrogant to think that our country is always right and can do no wrong.

What is wrong to listen to other people? Why does the president like to tell people that he does not listen to the polls? Doesn't he works for us? If he pays more attention to what people are saying, he may not be so out of touch! Be a little more humble will do him good.

Posted by: my 5cents | April 19, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Go David. I have voted for both Democratic and Republican Presidents and I was proud to do so. I am neither indecisive nor "wishy washy". I vote for the person whom I think will do what is best for our great country. Unfortunately, of late, there have been few choices. Must I always choose the best of the worst, so to speak. We need to dump the two party system, it is destroying this country.

Posted by: teacup | April 19, 2007 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Gonzales should just give up and resign. He's in a catch-22 position. If he says he's not involved, he sounds outright incompetent. What kind of Attorney General is he that can claim he's doing a good job, yet isn't involved in such a major decision as firing 8 US attorneys? But if he says he is indeed involved, then he admits to being a liar.

There's no way he can win. My advice to him is just give up and go home. I'm sure he can still find a good job in a private law firm and live comfortably ever after. And at the same time, the American public can get a new attorney general who's more competent, hopefully.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 3:17 PM | Report abuse

JoCat, God bless us! We are fighting a machine like none we have ever seen. The current Democrat party exhibits treasonous behavior that far exceeds the likes of Benedict Arnold. The party is maniacal. The hypocrisy it unbelievable. The blind that follow them are horribly ignorant, and I far more violent towards those that oppose their opinions.
Thank goodness.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 3:21 PM | Report abuse

As an English teacher I'm pleased to see some attempt to think about what words actually mean.

Unfortunately, lublubs, you've replaced one inappropriate word with another.

Substantiative is a VERB, whereas the original word, substantive, was working in that sentence as an adjective. The most appropriate word would probably be substantial.

In other words, vitriol is not a replacement for a substantial argument. Slinging slander and focusing on the character of the people making the arguments, rather than on the points that they make, is not a replacement for actually making a convincing argument.

Since you haven't yet done so, maybe you should spend more time reading the dictionary, and less time throwing out empty character assasinations to make you feel better about your substantial inadequacies, rhetorical and otherwise.

Posted by: jmolidor | April 19, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Holy smokes, I should finish my statement!
Thank goodness the right has common sense on its side. Thank you.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Flatlander: see SRosenbach. It was a good try, though.

s4c: I'm thrilled to see there is another rational soul, yet, on this planet.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

You cannot fire Gonzalez because his brain is fried; it is a reaonsable accommodation.
Dr. Ada

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

NEA squirrel jmolidor:

"Substantiate" is a verb. "Substantiative" is an adjective.

Go back to your freaking broken education system.

Friggin embarrassing.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 3:28 PM | Report abuse

JoCat, thank you for the blessing. In todays America where morals and values have taken a backseat to the HATESPEECH being dished out by the leaders of the Democrat Party on a daily basis, it is refreshing to see some reference to God. Even though you have Slandered the name of God to try and make some obscure political point, I do at least appreciate you mentioning him.

For the record, im neither uneducated (far from it actually), nor do I hate anyone. I hate the behaviour of those that are leading the Democrat Party...that is for sure! I dont belive they have the best interest of God, or this country in mind, when they say the vile things they say. I just dont see Republicans spewing out the hatred that I see from your party...I just dont. The Dems have become the Party of hate. It is what they have become. In every speech you hear them spewing more hate. It is where Howard Dean has led you. We now live in an America where half the country doesnt care if a sitting Senator calls our troops Nazis for goodness sake! Im not going to relist all the vile...it has been said enough in this thread.

But enough is enough. Enough of the Democrats making up scandals yet completely ignoring Kerry when he calls our troops stupid. Enough of you guys ignoring the fact that your dem leaders are embolding our enemies and giving them hope with the hatespeech that spills forth. Enough of ignoring one of your own cramming top secret docs down his pants. How come he isnt in jail?

Enough is Enough. Though I know you were using God in a sarcastic tone, I would ask that you get to know him by praying with a sincere heart. Maybe the love of His son and warmth of His spirit will lead you away from the party of "baby-killers (abortion)" and to an understanding of love, compassion, morals, and principles.

Instead of being in a party that spends millions a year to remove God from our schools and from our society, maybe He will lead you to understand that maybe all the craziness that has been happening began when we removed Him from our lives.

Only Through the Power of Christ can he turn your heart...I am unable.

Souldier 4 Christ
s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

It's amazing how GOP cronies see things, during Clinton, the AG serve the poeple, during Bush The AG serve the white house Hmmmmmm, double standard !

Posted by: T Serpenti | April 19, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

s4c; Where to begin...Is calling someone a babykiller not hate-speach? Is someone bearing an unwanted pregnancy worhty of that epithet?
"Kerry called our troops idiots"..
How do you spell Soldier? perhaps s4c is as close as you need to get.
I wonder at your presumption that anyone disagreeing with your view is a blight on the soul of this country. I have no hate in my heart for compassionate people. I pray you will find some. Meanwhile, the venom you spew preys on my tolerance.

Posted by: Cass Kunst | April 19, 2007 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Hi, all, thanx4 great comments and unshakable determination to make the U.S. a great country once again. Political people have fanned out across all agencies -- it's not just the Dept. of Justice. Ask global warming scientists at NSA (Hansen) or NOAA if their agencies have a political commissar at the gate. And guess which White House political commissar was sent to the Depts of Defense and DOJ to bring their ideas about THE meaning of "torture" into line?

From Wash Post:
Gonzales Helped Set the Course for Detainees

By R. Jeffrey Smith and Dan Eggen
Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, January 5, 2005; Page A01
--------------------
In March 2002, U.S. elation at the capture of al Qaeda operations chief Abu Zubaida was turning to frustration as he refused to bend to CIA interrogation. But the agency's officers, determined to wring more from Abu Zubaida through threatening interrogations, worried about being charged with violating domestic and international proscriptions on torture.

They asked for a legal review -- the first ever by the government -- of how much pain and suffering a U.S. intelligence officer could inflict on a prisoner without violating a 1994 law that imposes severe penalties, including life imprisonment and execution, on convicted torturers. The Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel took up the task, and at least twice during the drafting, top administration officials were briefed on the results.

White House counsel Alberto R. Gonzales chaired the meetings on this issue, which included detailed descriptions of interrogation techniques such as "waterboarding," a tactic intended to make detainees feel as if they are drowning. He raised no objections and, without consulting military and State Department experts in the laws of torture and war, approved an August 2002 memo that gave CIA interrogators the legal blessings they sought.

Gonzales, working closely with a small group of conservative legal officials at the White House, the Justice Department and the Defense Department -- and overseeing deliberations that generally excluded potential dissenters -- helped chart other legal paths in the handling and imprisonment of suspected terrorists and the applicability of international conventions to U.S. military and law enforcement activities.[snip]


Posted by: jerry-VA | April 19, 2007 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Lublubs: You're missing the point, as is SRosenbach. This isn't so much an issue of Presential prerogative as it's a case of a botched CYA excercise. If Bush's people thought they could stand on procedure and precedent, they wouldn't have made spurious job perfromance claims. In the resulting investigation, Alberto Gonzales has been forced to obfuscate and lie. That's become clear to all but the most biased observers.

Posted by: flatlander | April 19, 2007 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Only Through the Power of Christ can he turn your heart...I am unable.

You fake religious types really crack me up. If you support the war in Iraq then you clearly haven't the first clue as to what being a Christian is all about.

I just dont see Republicans spewing out the hatred that I see from your party...I just dont.

Look in the mirror, then. This entire thread is you spewing hate for Democrats and liberals. Of course, you are using the time-honored Rovian tactic of attributing your weakness to your opponent, so this line of reasoning doesn't surprise me.

Posted by: John S. | April 19, 2007 3:49 PM | Report abuse

s4c
Sorry, it took me a while to wash off the acid....I will not respond in kind.
Clubbing me over the head with the Democratic party won't get you very far- I'm not a Democrat.
Nor am I a Republican.
I vote for and support those who further my most cherished values- justice and freedom. I see both being badly damaged by this administration. In short, I am an independend- it's a point of view you should try sometime, it frees you from so much hatred and fear.
And again, I criticize because I love. If you can't understand that, then you define love differently than I.

Posted by: Jabberwocky | April 19, 2007 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Clinton firings? Here's the Congresion Research Service (part of the Library of Congress) report on US Attorney firings 1981-2006(Apologies if this was already posted); http://www.opencrs.com/rpts/RL33889_20070222.pdf.
A greneral summary of the findings (not my own): "The Congressional Research Service report showed that of 468 U.S. attorney confirmations over the last 25 years, only 10 left involuntarily. Two were fired outright for improper (behavior), and in one case, criminal conduct. Six others were implicated in news reports for "questionable" behavior. The CRS was unable to determine the cause for the last two. In other words, the Bush administration fired almost as many U.S. attorneys in one week as had been let go over the past 25 years. "

Posted by: JustTheFacts | April 19, 2007 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Cass, Soul-dier, got it now?
I have a problem with a party that refuses to call a partial-birth abortion murder, lies about stem-cell research, tries to shove inconclusive global-warming fallacies down my throat. Do you have any idea what they do to a perfectly formed child with a heartbeat in a partial-birth abortion?

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Okay, so Gonzalez is fired, what is next? Look into your Democrat crystal balls and tell me what happens when one of them becomes president.
While you are at it, tell me what a spinach farmer has to do with supporting the troops? What was the point in putting forth a bill that you knew in advance that the president would veto, then take off for two weeks??? Honest answers only please.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Then tell me what justifies wasting time and having baby fits over Scooter Libby?
I am tired of the constant smokescreens.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

I disagree with flatlanders contention that this is just a failed CYA situation. Yes, the snowball got rolling when some of the fired attorneys took umbrage about public statements given by the administration officials that the firings were performance related after they had recently received glowing job reviews. And the lies really came flowing from DOJ officials when they tried to deal with this lie, and when into CYA mode.

But the real landmine that the Bush administration is trying not to step on is having it come to light that the public officials paid to administer justice by the American people might have been pressured to prosecute or not prosecute people in an effort to aid Republicans in elections.

That is not there job, and abusing the Department of Justice in this fashion should not be tolerated by any American of any party. If due diligence by the US attorneys causes political pain for any party, that is the consequence of the guilty person's actions and not the DOJ.

But if Senator Domenici or Karl Rove conspires with DOJ officials to try and influence elections by directing prosecutions, that is not a good thing for American democracy.

And that is what we need to find out in these hearings.

By the way, presidential pardons await any guilt parties. So don't sweat it too much, Bush apologists. Guilty parties only reap rewards in the GOP universe.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Alberto es un culero.

Posted by: jorge | April 19, 2007 4:18 PM | Report abuse

DBS, s4c: friends, the socialists do not get it. They do not value preservation of life. If one cannot understand the difference of killing and/or interrogating a terrorist and partial birth abortion (aka: reproductive right), one is not fit to debate. It is simply a lost cause. They ignore logic. They soak up the media's causes (embryonic stem cell research, global warming) with a child-like faith, yet criticize this administration for faith-based initiatives. It is disheartening.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Socialists:
Ask yourself one question: which party is most likely to prosecute a child molester? Which party is most likely to strictly adhere to the Constitution? Which party can "understand" bus bombings of innocent Israelis? Which party values the rights of terrorists over life itself? You people defy all preservation.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 4:26 PM | Report abuse

lublubs--when you begin to use proper grammar and word choice then your attempt at intellectual superiority might have a scintilla of credence. Now, howver, you are little more than an obtuse and irritating sideshow.

Posted by: tocs | April 19, 2007 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Self: that was actually four questions.

Posted by: Lublubs | April 19, 2007 4:32 PM | Report abuse

lol DBS thank you for pointing out the obvious spelling of my name. :)

CASS U SAID: s4c; Where to begin...Is calling someone a babykiller not hate-speach? Is someone bearing an unwanted pregnancy worhty of that epithet?

No it isn't hate speech. Someone who purposely kills a baby is a babykiller. That's not hate speech. A Senator calling our President a Traitor (Al Gore), or Calling our troops Nazis (Dick Durbin) or saying our troops are killing innocent people in the dead of night (Kerry), or saying only the uneducated go to Iraq to serve (Kerry). or saying that Hussein ran prisons better than the USA (Kennedy). All those things would be defined as hate speech.

Calling people who take vacuum cleaners to rip babies from the womb babykillers is not hate speech.

See the difference?

Souldier 4 Christ (s4c)

Jabber, once again you, or anyone, cant defend the outrageous statements made by the leaders of your party.

The silence is deafening.

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse

The Democratic party stands against everything I believe in, bar none. On this one though, I hope they nail the La Raza boy and banish him out of the Atty. Generals office.
This man is an incompetent puppet of traitor, open-borders globalist Jorge W. Bush. He needs to go and his puppeteer should be impeached for treason.

Posted by: hippie69 | April 19, 2007 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Now I feel bad for lublubs.

From another site:

About: Lublub is a lone teenager, sitting in front of the computer in her own room. Getting connected online to hundreds of other GLBT people, all alone as well and sitting in front of the computer in their own rooms. All waiting for that one chance when they can see someone, anyone, face to face, and turn what is virtual into reality.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 4:37 PM | Report abuse

s4c
Let me see if I understand your comments correctly. Make up a story (lie). Are you referring to the reason for getting into Iraq? Tell it a million times. The ignorant base (Republicans) will believe it. Dems only hate what this administration has done to America. What countries other than Israel held the press conferences to denounce Pelosi's visit. Let's talk about treason, what would you call Bush allowing the bin Laden family and other Saudi royalty the opportunity to get out of the US on (9/12) when all air traffic for domestic travel was shut down. I especially enjoyed the picture of your prez walking in the rose garden holding hands with a Saudi prince. That was an intimate moment that should not have been photographed. Make me puke. Or how about the video of your prez right after he was informed of 9/11. I really liked the way he jumped into action. NOT
Still has'nt been proved that your prez ever completed his military obligation. AWOL The only thing your prez is doing wrong is making believe he knows what he is doing. Since you have'nt been in Cuba how the hell would you know whether their medical system is any better or worse than ours? The repubs are the only ones killing this country by sucking up to oil, banking, insurance, corporate welfare and in general big money. This administration is so inept,and intellectually challenged they can't tell a lie without getting caught. This administration was supposed to bring honesty and morality back to the presidency and has succeeded in doing just the opposite. This administration without a doubt has been the most corrupt ever. PS I am a registered Republican and am ashamed I ever voted for the shrub sitting in the whitehouse. Along with the legend in his own mind (Rove) and little Dick the troll who has a few beers and then shoots his hunting partner. How pitiful. Almost as bad as an alcoholic coke head as prez

Posted by: Jesse | April 19, 2007 4:38 PM | Report abuse

"Now I feel bad for lublubs.

From another site:

About: Lublub is a lone teenager, sitting in front of the computer in her own room. Getting connected online to hundreds of other GLBT people, all alone as well and sitting in front of the computer in their own rooms. All waiting for that one chance when they can see someone, anyone, face to face, and turn what is virtual into reality.

Posted by: | April 19, 2007 04:37 PM"

Totally untrue! I never chat alone. My cat is always in the room.

Posted by: Lubs | April 19, 2007 4:48 PM | Report abuse

what does "GLBT" stand for?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Oh boy Jesse. Wow you pretty much listed all of the lunatic left-wing Michael Moore Rosie O'donnell conspiricy theories. Good Job! lol.

I was going to comment further about what you posted, but after reading your post again im thinking I am dealing with someone very young or very uneducated...or a little drunk. In any of the three scenarios a conversation would be mute.

lublub: Great posts friend. It is indeed troubling to see the amount of power the Socialist have gained. I believe it was Marx that said America would never fall from a bullet, but rather from a political movement inside its borders. Im afraid he was correct. The Democrats and the Press they control have done an amazing job in turning a large number of people into anti-american, anti-liberty protestors.

I really thought we had chance at one point. I thought we had a chance to turn this country away from the Godless ways of the liberal left and from their henchmen the ACLU, but who could have ever dreamed of the amount of pure hatred and number of lies that the dems and the press could manufacture? I know I never thought it possible.

But just look at these comments by the socialists. My God, the balatant anti-americanism is dis-heartning. Hating America is envogue. It's cool now to hate the country, and the God, that has given you everything. Its the goal of the dems to make people feel sorry for our enemies, and for us to feel bad about our country. It is their goal for Americans to overlook all the good this country does and only focus on few made-up scandals. However, when you own the press AND your followers are mostly from the class of uneducated people, they will soak up anything you say. We need look no further than Michael Moore and Rosie O'Donnell to see that my point is valid. Never has this country had two worst citizens than those...yet they sell movies and these socialists prop them up as heroes while at the same time trying to demonize a strong President that is grounded in strong Christian values.

The democrats doom and gloom speech for over 5 years has taken a heavy toll on this country. Democrats want people to believe that we the people are weak and stupid, and that only the government can save us. It is a Maxim of Socialism that the people are too stupid to run thier lives so the Govt must do it for them.

Make no mistake about it my friends...they have won. They have created a PC environment and a Godless environment that we will never be able to repair. First they took God out of society...out of America. Then they destroyed our political process to the point where serious debate can no longer take place. How do you talk to a party that believes that troops that defend this country are stupid and are akin to Nazi's? You can't.

I promise you this: The first time a Republican calls our troops Nazis or any of the other anti-American garbage that the dems say...I will denounce the party. I wont be like all the dem kool-aid drinkers and try to defend such rhetoric.

s4c

Posted by: s4c | April 19, 2007 5:08 PM | Report abuse

s4c

There was no sarcasm in my use of God and you are wrong in assuming I'm a Democrat. I am actually closer to God that you could ever imagine, but that someday you just might come to know. But this is not a religious thread, so I'll leave it there.

I see most people on this thread, and in this country, are wise enough to ignore your foolishness, so I bid you blessings.

Posted by: JoCat | April 19, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

GLBT = Gay, Lesbian, Bi, Transexual.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

OK, people. Can't we all just dial the rhetoric down a little? There is no need for the nastiness written in the comments above. Why can't we honestly disagree and still manage to treat each other like human beings? It's really demoralizing, no matter what party your're affiliated with. BTW, please do not call yourself a CHristian and then write horrible, hateful things about people who don't agree with you...show some understanding and compassion for others. The word Christian comes from Christ...followers who strive to mold themselves in the image of Jesus. I have read the bible front and back, many times, and no where in its pages have I ever seen Jesus use the kind of hateful attacks that some (DBS and that ilk) choose to display here. It's a good thing Jesus already loves you, though I'm sure he hopes someday you'll grow up and follow his true teachings...love others as yourself, trat people with honor and respect, etc. Sounds like someone needs a refresher course...

Posted by: capitolvee | April 19, 2007 5:19 PM | Report abuse

It's clear Pres. blank for brains is correct, we are fighting the extremists here at home. The blinded by the right.

The above article is about the "Frado" Gonzales hearing, so I'll start there. Does the name Monica Goodling mean any thing to you clinic bombing, war mongering, neophytes? In case you "don't recall"(now you don't have to have alzheimer's for that to fly on the stand. Thanks to your beloved arms selling for hostages hero R.R. but I digress) Yes the Pat Robertson law school grad (that had no prosecution experience) is going to get immunity and be forced to send Frado fishing for the last time.

This is clearly the work of Carl Rove and the GOP to gain control of the DOJ. Having GOP hatchet men in place to bring political investigations and influence the "08 election.
AMEN

Posted by: Mike G. | April 19, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse

s4c:

I could not have said it better. But where you say they have won, I am still fighting to believe that they haven't. I do agree, though, that if my party doesn't start soon to get more of a backbone and stand up against the Socialist machine, I too will denounce them.
Political correctness is a scourge. The minions who have chosen to believe the Dems propaganda are lazy, and it disturbs me.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 5:31 PM | Report abuse

I was a fired US Attorney, but only as part of a transition from one administration to another. I think all US Attorneys know and understand that they serve at the will and pleasure of the President. The President's "will" cannot and should not be exercised based on a US Attorneys decision to prosecute or not prosecute a politically sensitive case on the eve of an election. And this of course is the problem--Gonzales doesn't grasp the harm he has done to the federal prosecutorial system. His motives are immaterial at this point because he has established that he is fundamentally inept. We deserve better.

Posted by: rb | April 19, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Yes, let's keep a Middle East religion (Christianity) separate from our American government.

Posted by: Enlightened Democracy | April 19, 2007 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Hateful attacks? That is insane. How can you call legitimate questions hateful attacks? Oh, darn, I forgot for a brief moment who I was dealing with. Ignorance is bliss. I have my reasons for doubting that you have read the Bible from front to back.
So the post after capitolvee's calls me a clinic bomber. I take offense. I can be opposed to the act of a doctor pulling a perfectly formed fetus (20 weeks and up)out of the womb by its feet, sticking scissors in the back of its neck to create a hole and sticking a tube into the hole to suck out its brains without being called a clinic bomber. But then again, sticks and stones will break my bones....oops, there I go again, forgetting who I am dealing with.

Posted by: DBS | April 19, 2007 5:50 PM | Report abuse

DBS: The fetus of a late term abortion is, of course, anesthetized and does not know a thing - very much like George W. Bush and his Republican Guard :)

Posted by: Enlightened Democracy | April 19, 2007 5:59 PM | Report abuse

I have my reasons for doubting that you have read the Bible from front to back.

One would have reason to question whether or not you have read the Bible, either. Or rather, whether you understood what you read.

Perhaps you could reconcile the beatitudes with George Bush's presidency, the Iraq War or the Republican party?

Just a reminder: The seventh beatitude is "blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God".

Posted by: John S. | April 19, 2007 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Nice try DBS,
Personally I'm opposed to abortion. I have been happily divorced for many years. I take responsibility as not to put a woman in a position where she is facing such a difficult decision. You might want to divert the readers attention away from the subject, and I can understand that. After all it's just a matter of time before the U.S. Constitution catches up to the Fascist, oh I'm sorry, I meant republican party

Posted by: Mike G | April 19, 2007 6:10 PM | Report abuse

I have read all the postings and must say with but a few exceptions most are nothing more than moronic partisan mud slinging. To that I say, "A pox on both your Parties!"

For those who compare Bush to Clinton (or Clinton to Bush) I say, "There ain't a dime's worth of difference between the two!"

For those who state that Clinton fired all the US Attorneys, that is untrue -- he kept one and Bush kept him too. Bush later promoted that one Attorney to head the Department of Homeland Security. What a guy that Chertoff! Loved by both Clinton and Bush!

For those "Repubicans" defending the indefensable Alberto Gonzales, I would like to take you on a trip down Memory Lane. While defending Gonzo, did you know that he approves of teachers having sex with their underage students and when getting one pregnant, taking the little girl to have an abortion to eliminate the evidence of the crime -- without the parents (or the law enforcement authorities) being any the wiser? That is how Gonzo voted after Bush appointed him to the bench in Texas. Such "family values" that shows and how very left of center, too.

Gonzo is simply Janet Reno in shorter pants. And, before one of you brings up the Waco conflagration, let me remind you that that little debacle was planned by the first Bush Administration. Reno simply carried out their plan with the same results that would have occurred had Bush 41 retained the office. Anyone remember Bush 41's brilliant handling of the Ruby Ridge assassinations? The NRA termed the Bush assassins "Jack-booted thugs" for good reason.

The last Republican president to reside in the White House was Ronald Reagan (he was the last Democrat to hold the office as well, considering that he was originally a Democrat). The Bushes and the Clintons are neither Republicans nor are they Democrats -- they are anti-American Globalists -- dedicated to the destruction of this Republic. Alberto Gonzales is simply a treasonous stooge working to aid in that destruction. And, anyone defending Gonzo, Bush or Clinton is showing their anti-Americanism and favors the destruction of this Republic. You should all be ashamed of yourselves for doing so.

Posted by: TashaTchin | April 19, 2007 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Bravo TashaTchin, As a registered Libertarian for the last twenty plus years, I applaud you insight and analysis.

Oh, and anyone that uses the phrases, " A pox on....." is OK in my book.

Posted by: Mike G | April 19, 2007 6:48 PM | Report abuse

The United States, as the leader of the world, should set a good example to the rest of the world by contributing to make the world a better place. It's a shame sometimes the situation is totally opposite.
Unfortunately, our political leader is not making enough commitment to Kyoto Protocol to stop global warming, or to the U.N.'s Millennium Development Goals to end global poverty.
According to The Borgen Project, it only cost $19 billion to end global poverty.
What can we do for our future generations?
It is not so hard if we are truly willing to make a change.

Posted by: DaShamu | April 19, 2007 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Give me a break!! I just don't understand what all the hop-la is about. Everyone is acting like this is the first time they've seen a cover-up. This has been going on for hundreds of years and will continue for many more to come. Republicans and Democrates alike have been lieing and covering up things for years. It's just as was stated earlier that there's so many people that just hate Bush that they can't or won't see anything else. People get fired everyday for little or no reason,welcome to the real world.

Posted by: A Native American | April 19, 2007 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Impeachment is the only answer. If not for these people, then for whom? At least some of the lot should spend the rest of their lives in a jail. I think you know who I mean, too.

Posted by: robert crawford | April 19, 2007 9:27 PM | Report abuse

It's all about injecting Hispanics to positions of influence and to retain them there. Interestingly, Pres. Bush, so quick to abandon several prominent Republicans in the past, firmly stands behind his incompetent Attorney General. This doesn't help the White House improve President's nosediving approval rates. One might say, like the President like his Attorney General.

Posted by: A Reader | April 19, 2007 11:36 PM | Report abuse

Lublubs--I see your alias is an anagram of Bull sub, is that the same as *male submissive*?

Posted by: Bill MacLeod | April 20, 2007 3:11 PM | Report abuse

It's interesting to note that Gov. Richardson, who last week was supporting Gonzales, has switched. It's not just the Republicans who are distancing themselves from Gonzales, its the Hispanic community as well. Bush has the problem that if Gonzales doesn't quit, he'll be a target for the remainder of Bush's term. If Gonzales does quit, that opens the door to confirmation hearings for a new Attorney General, and puts Rove one step closer to the hot seat.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 20, 2007 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Good luck Chris, on your hope in busting Rove. If Reagan was the teflon President, Rove is the teflon assistant.

Posted by: Bobby | April 20, 2007 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Da Shamu, if you are so concerned about the environment, I suggest you take your complaints to Teddy Kennedy and the Democrats. The US achieved Zero Population Growth long ago and that would have minimized our "carbon footprint" and our destruction of the environment. But, Teddy and the Dems knew better than the American people and decided to do something about their desire to move people from low "carbon footprint" environments to the US where they would increase their "carbon footprint" by five to ten-fold.

Just go to Google Video and search for "Immigration-by-the-Numbers" and watch what Teddy and Company have done to us. The video presentation is about ten years old and things have changed, but not for the better. This video also does not include any illegal immigration in the numbers. Enjoy, and then put the blame where it truly belongs on Teddy Kennedy and the Democrats!

Posted by: TashaTchin | April 20, 2007 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe the morons who are still supporting an adiministration that has jailed border patrol agents and sheriffs, allowed millions of people to not only come into this nation but commit all kinds of fraud, document crime, identity theft,etc. However, and this is emphatic, I don't endorse the Democrats, they are a total joke on protecting American citizens, from identity theft and fraud ,etc. by people who should not even be here. Congressman Tancredo President 08, the corruption and pure thievery of both parties has to end. Americans need to vote for someone who apparently isn't liked that well by both corrupt parties.

Posted by: Bobby | April 20, 2007 9:56 PM | Report abuse

You can tell by reading the posts that most of these people are left wing Dems, who could not find anything to cheer for in this administration if it was the greatest thing to ever happen. WE had 721 dead people vote in WA in the last election and the prosecutor could find nothing to investigate and the Dems had three recounts until they got their way, that is probably why he was fired.

Posted by: tired of it | April 21, 2007 7:16 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Lublub echoes a silly "apples and oranges" comparison that seeks to excuse the Bush regime mid-term canning of US Attorneys for what appear to be corrupt partisan reasons. Nearly every new Pres, Clinton AND Bush included, put on their own team of USAs, subject to Senate approval, at the beginning of their terms. NO former President in the last generation or so has conducted multiple firings, NOT based on misconduct, in the middle of a term....only about 5 USAs have been fired in mid-term during the last 25 years, every one for obvious cause. Find another excuse.

Posted by: mdl | April 23, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

To s4c and all you other people who love to label anybody who thinks different from you as America haters,

You people are the REAL America haters. You are the people who continue to support everything that is AGAISNT what this country stands for. As for your suggestion that us others move to a different counrty, I have the same suggestion for you. In fact, why not try Russia and/or China? Both of those countries would seem to suit you just fine. In both of those countries, you get locked up and/or killed for speaking up about/against corrupt leaders. From the attitudes you people seem to have, you would be right at home in those countries.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 23, 2007 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me or the fact that he originally lied about why they were fired and how much he knew about it seem totally weird? ... once someone lies once... usually they will lie again.

You know this story is intresting in that I had always assumed (yea I know don't assume), both while in the military and once I got out that the President would try to overlook politics to do the best thing for the country.... so why is the AG still here?

Posted by: JustTired | April 23, 2007 5:17 PM | Report abuse

"How do you replace the AG for incompetence when it has become increasingly clear that the President doesn't KNOW anybody competent."

Good post CS! I got a chuckle out of it.

I wonder if somebody has thought to sell T-Shirts that highlight or quote Gonzales (& company - e.g. Scooter Libby, etc.) "I don't recall" responses. If anything, the DNC should consider it as a fundraiser. I know I would shell out $20 bucks for a Top Ten Memorable quotes of our corrupt Republicans leaders. All Bush needs to tell Gonzales now is, "You're doing a heckuva job, Gonzo."

Posted by: T. | April 23, 2007 10:41 PM | Report abuse

THE UNITED STATES SENATE OF AMERICA AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES **THE CONGRESS** AS WELL APROVED SUBPOENAS. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------**** LET THE GAMES CONTINUE ****---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------one down **Kyle Sampson** --- two down **MONICA GOODLING** --- three down **Michael J. Elston** --- FOUR down **JUSTICEDEPARTMENT ARCHIEF THOUSANDS OF FIRINGPAPERS AND EMAILS NOT HANDED OVER TO CONGRESS,GONZALES SUBPOENAED TO DELIVER BY MONDAY 2.00 HOURS** --- --- 5 DOWN William Moschella** --- 6 DOWN Scott Jennings _ to reveal their roles in the firings --- SEVEN DOWN **Rove's deputy, Sara Taylor** --- **GONZALES IS ABOUT TO RESIGN,AND OTHERWISE WILL BE SEND AWAY BEFOR MAY, BY CONGRESS SO WE MAY CONSIDER HIM DOW** --- AND MIERS*S VERTICAL SMILE WILL CHANGE IN A GRIME ONES SHES INDICTED ** OUR COMMANDER IN THEFT AND CHEAT WILL LEAVE US SOON **SOONER** NOW THAT WE HAVE DISCOVERED THE PHONY ANONIMOUS ITALIAN LETTER SPELLED IN FRENCH THAT CHEATED US IN AN UNNECESSARY WAR !! EARLY ELECTIONS ARE ON THE WAY...I.E. BEFORE THIS SUMMER. AND LET US BE CLEAR ALL PERSONS BELONG TO THE GROUP OF EXTREME CHRISTIAN REPUBLICAN TERRORISTS !!! Rep Specter says: **Gonzales is a problem by not remembering facts of the firings 72 times,he is hurting the justice department, no says Prez BU_ll_SH_it Gonzales is a good boy, yes says Gonzales I stay. No says the American people YOU GO AND STOP POLITICIZING THE AMERICAN JUSTICE SYSTEM!!

Posted by: jwh | April 28, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

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