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Walter Jones, From Freedom Fries to Anti-Bush Tomes

Question: Which southern conservative Republican congressman who voted to authorize war with Iraq recently is a big fan of Vincent Bugliosi's provocative new book, "The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder," on tape?

Hint: The guy from the Carolinas who, during the lead-up to the war in 2003, renamed French fries "freedom fries" in House eateries but who later concluded the president took the country to war under false pretenses and soon began calling for troop withdrawal.

Book Jacket

And while Bugliosi himself would neither "confirm nor deny" the mystery congressman is Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), he didn't need to. He described Jones to a tee without ever uttering the congressman's name.

Bugliosi, the lawyer whose biggest claim to fame is prosecuting Charles Manson, tells us a "conservative Southern congressman" called him on June 16 to say he had listened to "The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder" on tape and loved it. "He said he bought several copies of the book and told colleagues, 'Here -- read this book. We've been lied to.'"

In a subsequent phone conversation, Bugliosi says he asked Mr. Southern Conservative Congressman if it would be better that the author not disclose the name of his biggest Republican fan on Capitol Hill. The congressman, according to Bugliosi, replied, "It's better that my name not come out at this point. But I promise you that after the election I'll be standing there by your side."

A source close to the author confirmed to us that the congressman in question is, indeed, North Carolina's Jones. But Bugliosi says he won't name the congressman because he believes him to be "a man with a deep conscience." He says he's worried the congressman "may lose his reelection" if his constituents find out he's been reading a book that espouses the president's prosecution for murder for invading Iraq.

Jones has openly complained about the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq war, including the Pentagon's ban on media coverage and photos of the arrival of fallen service members at military installations. He recently told the Jacksonville Daily News, "To me, it's like an administration doesn't want people to be reminded there is a war."

Jones, a seven-term incumbent, is running for re-election in his district that encompasses the Marine Corps' Camp Lejeune. He declined to return repeated calls and emails through both his chief of staff and press secretary seeking comment about Bugliosi's book.

But we hear from another source that Jones was wild for Bugliosi's anti-Bush tome. Mike Hirsch, a grassroots activist with the group Progressive Democrats of America, tells us he met Congressman Jones during a recent visit to Capitol Hill and discussed Bugliosi's book with him. Hirsch claims Jones was "thrilled and excited, very exuberant about the book."

According to Hirsch, Jones was "raving" about the book. "It took me aback," Hirsch told us. He said it "struck me as unusual that you'd have a Christian conservative from the South" talking about a book that espouses the prosecution of President Bush for murder.

All we can say is, Jones has come a long way in his personal odyssey from eating freedom fries to reading books whose titles suggest Bush be jailed for war crimes.

By Mary Ann Akers  |  August 14, 2008; 9:09 AM ET
 
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Comments

VIDEO of Bugliosi giving an excellent talk on his new book where he also discusses the mysterious Southern Republican...

http://www.hotpotatomash.com/2008/06/video-exclusi-2.html

Posted by: HPM | August 14, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

So if the congressman asked you not to use his name right now, why did you?

Posted by: L Roberts | August 14, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

L Roberts (emphasis added):
So if the congressman asked you not to use his name right now, why did you?

Read the piece again. Jones reportedly asked Bugliosi not to name him (for now). I don't see why 1) you assume that request extends to WaPo or Akers and 2) even if it did why they would be under any ethical obligation to comply with it.

Posted by: Crust | August 14, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Not a big surprise to many of us in the 3rd district of NC, just more of Walter's hate for the President and his shift left. Don't be surprised if he switches parties after November.

Posted by: awilgus | August 14, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Do you not know that Congressman Jones' father served the 3rd District for years as a Democrat? Walter, himself, served in the NC legislature as a Democrat. A little sleuthing on your part might tell you some interesting facts about his decision to run as a Republican for his father's old seat.

Posted by: A. O'Bryan | August 15, 2008 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Why do journalists keep referring to the "mishandling" of the Iraq war? I'm sure that's not the way Mr. Bugliosi describes it. The point is that it is the act of making war, and the deception that accompanied it, that are the problem. Journalists sound like wusses when they mischaracterize Iraq as a war not managed well. That is NOT even-handedness, it is a tacit assumption that once a war is started no one should question it.

Posted by: timorgan2008 | August 15, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Why do journalists keep referring to the "mishandling" of the Iraq war? I'm sure that's not the way Mr. Bugliosi describes it. The point is that it is the act of making war, and the deception that accompanied it, that are the problem. Journalists sound like wusses when they mischaracterize Iraq as a war not managed well. That is NOT even-handedness, it is a tacit assumption that once a war is started no one should question it.

Posted by: tmorgan2008 | August 15, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

All the commenters (here and elsewhere) who've tried to characterize Walter Jones as a closet Democrat are full of beans.

I live in Jone's (ridiculously safe) district. He's just another conservative Republican, and if he was once a Democrat, all it means is that he was smarter then than he is now.

I'm gratified that Jones has taken a less hawkish stance on the Iraqi debacle, but as a progressive Democrat, I'd never vote for him in a thousand years.

Posted by: Jerome Norris | August 15, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Walter was upset when he did not win his father's seat because the Democrats felt that a black should get the seat. Republicans bought Walter Jr. and elected him in a district he does not even live in.

Posted by: Don Croom | August 15, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | August 16, 2008 12:26 AM | Report abuse

The Iraqi war has been mishandled basically since about the time the blitzkrieg ended. Any commenter who claims the that journalists have mischaracterized the war as being mismanaged has obviously not read or studied the Iraqi conflict in a serious way. There have been numerous books written by first hand witnesses of the bungled occupation. From de-Baathification to looting to no-bid contracts to reckless, incompetent contractors to bungled military supply lines to unarmored Humvees to soldiers without flak jackets to Abu Gharaib to Rumsfeld to Bush to thousands of dead GIs and Marines the war has been a complete and total debacle for the US of A.

Posted by: nivek | August 16, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Walter Jones has shown great humility and honesty, and I congratulate him. He's "seen the light" and encourages others to drop the spurious patriotism and replace it with true love of country which demands that rule of law and facts come before partisanship. Too bad more members of his fanatical ideology driven party don't behave like "real men" and admit they were wrong. If they truly "support the troops" they will show it by condemning a war for oil profits waged by cowards and thieves.
M.A.Callan

Posted by: mary ann callan | August 17, 2008 6:22 PM | Report abuse

THANKS FOR STANDING UP FOR THE ONES WHO VOTED FOR YOU. AND I WILL SURELY VOTE FOR YOU THIS TIME AGAIN.

Posted by: MAIE NEAL | August 18, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

No one loves you when you're down.

Posted by: Aaron | August 18, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

It is gratifying to see a man so recently a "media darling" for his tome Reclaiming History hoisted upon his own petard for utilizing the same techniques - in sum, ego glorification - in "prosecuting" a popular president for murder as he did in "prosecuting" the ever-unpopular Lee Oswald for the same thing.

Apparently, the great Vinnie Bugliosi, the man who "is most famous for putting away Charles Manson" over 30 years ago, believes that that long-ago victory bestows infallability upon him and all he pronounces now.

One should perhaps read his "Prosecution of Lee Harvey Oswald for Murder" AFTER reading "The Prosecution of Bush" to determine for oneself whether his arguments in the former have any more validity than they do in the latter. It is difficult to imagine that, on inhaling, Bugliosi can be lionized for assuring us that we were "told the truth," and upon exhaling, vilified for trying to tell us we've "been lied to."

One would think that either his arguments and tactics are equally as valid between the two books, or equally as invalid. Or can legal literary man be both genius and fool all in one year?

Posted by: Duke Lane | August 18, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

John McCain, The Real McCain, has been given the classic media blackout treatment.


The Real McCain by Cliff Schecter “Cliff Schecter provides us with some real ‘straight talk’ about John McCain. Everyone who wants to know why John McCain won’t give us healthcare but will ...
www.realmccainbook.com/ - 6k -


Obama Nation vs. The Real McCain: A Study In Contrasts - White ... Aug 14, 2008 ... Anti-Obama book gets front page of Post and Times, anti-McCain book gets nothing Published 60 minutes ago by John Aravosis (DC) ...
beltwayblips.com/story/obama_nation_vs_the_real_mccain_a_study_in_contrasts/ - 44k - 8 hours ago -

Center for Responsive Politics
"Democrat Barack Obama has received nearly six times as much money from troops deployed overseas at the time of their contributions than has Republican John McCain, and the fiercely antiwar Ron Paul, though he suspended his campaign for the Republican nomination months ago, has received more than four times McCain's haul," the report said.
The report also included this surprise: "Members of the armed services overall -- whether stationed overseas or at home -- are also favoring Obama with their campaign contributions in 2008 57 percent has gone to Obama."
The analysis of campaign records found Obama has raised more than $60,000 from 134 men and women deployed overseas. McCain has raised $10,665 from 26 deployed donors.

[O]ne leadership aide said the full quote put it into a different context. According to that aide, Obama said, "It has become increasingly clear in my travel, the campaign -- that the crowds, the enthusiasm, 200,000 people in Berlin, is not about me at all. It's about America. I have just become a symbol."

Posted by: Kathleen M. Smith | August 18, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

If Obama would appear on public TV and swear on a Bible that as President he would have George Bush arrested and convicted of murder Obama could tell that slimy, little monkey to get out of that White House right now . . . I am taking over and Obama would be admired by ninety percent of the people of America forever.

Posted by: Ward Johnston | August 18, 2008 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Prosecuting George W. Bush (et al) for murder? Oooh this makes me deeeeleriously euphoric. And I'd be even happier to see King George Jr. get the death penalty.

Posted by: Guy Fox | August 19, 2008 4:05 AM | Report abuse

Prosecuting George W. Bush (et al) for murder? Oooh this makes me deeeeleriously euphoric. And I'd be even happier to see King George Jr. get the death penalty.

Posted by: Guy Fox | August 19, 2008 4:05 AM | Report abuse

Walter, I would vote for you if you stood up for this Book NOW, election be damned, our Country is at stake !

Posted by: ratface | August 19, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

I've been wondering lately whether the MANSON MURDERS wasn't a CIA Plot to USE the Manson FAmily, which they probably had known about as they were probably even watching the BEACH BOYS at this time, during NIXON's Vietnam War,when they were in Psychedelic Hippie phase, Charles Manson hanging out with BRIAN of the Beach Boys: Charles Manson and his followers were already into LSD so the CIA could have used THEIR LSD to turn the Manson Girl into "loaded weapons".

Then, when the "loaded weapons" predictably went off with a BANG the NIXON Regime, the FBI & the CIA used the sensational MURDER Spree to kill the growing "HIPPIE" counter-culture movement, turn the American PUBLIC against the ANTI-WAR activists, protestors & against the Hippies. The Manson Murders TRIALS also served as a handy DIVERSION to district American People from the WAR & other crimes the NIXON crowd was committing!

It was the beginning of the Right-Wing conservative "CULTURE WARS" against Liberals and helped usher in REAGAN years & the damn "MORAL MAJORITY" thugs! CIA we know experimented on College Students & American Soldiers with LSD, so my theory not so far fetched. Look at how Patty HEARST was "brainwashed" & programmed.

Posted by: Charles Manson | August 19, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

It took Nixon, the rabid anti-communist, to go to Red China. Maybe it will take a Republican to impeach Bush. It might be the path towards redemption for the Party that destroyed America.

Posted by: thebob.bob | August 19, 2008 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Interesting points made by numerous posters here today about Jones. I may not share all his views, but respect his willingness to admit he was very wrong on Iraq.
timorgan: You obviously support the Iraq occupation, so arguing any facts with you is futile.
BTW: I assume you've served there, right?

Posted by: vegasgirl | August 19, 2008 8:57 PM | Report abuse

America was slow to wake up but thank goodness many of us was not fooled by the Bush Adm. Yes he should be charged, found guilty and then hanged. Only when this happens will our dead soldiers be able to rest in peace. We have to get rid of Nancy Pelosi because she made deals with Bush, Cheney, Bill Frist, DeLay and who knows how many others.

Posted by: Buckeye | August 20, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm not Quite as conservative as Cong. Jones, as I think Bush/Cheney should be EXECUTED, not merely jailed, for crimes against the American People.

Posted by: Hub2 | August 20, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

I'm not Quite as pogressive as Hub2, but I think Hub2 should be RAPED IN THE ANUS UNTIL DEAD for crimes against sanity.

Posted by: Molly | August 20, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

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