This just in ... The Congress (both houses) craft legislation.
This just in ... The President of the US (POTUS) has the ability to fire US attorneys !!! < OH NO !!! RUN FOR THE BORDERS FOLKS - THIS IS CLEARLY A SIGN OF THE APOCALYPSE!!!>
Ok - I'll now remove tongue from cheek.
Just watched Pres. Bush's press conference earlier today (regarding allowing his advisors testifying before Congress) and wanted to say something I've not said to him in awhile...
"BRAVO MR. PRESIDENT !!!!"
Pres. Bush basically told the Democrats in Congress to go pound sand. AND ITS ABOUT TIME!!! Stand up and fight Mr. President. Stop letting people like us carry your water for you.
Lets face it my friends. This attorney firing scandal is anything BUT a scandal.
Lets get some facts out of the way;
1.) The US attorneys are not inherently vested with the power to prosecute citizens by the Constitution. That prerogative is vested in the Executive Branch.
2.) The Executive Branch consists of exactly ONE person. That would be the President. The Legislative consists of the Congress. The Judicial consists of the Supreme Court. The Executive begins and ends with the President as far as the Constitution is concerned.
3.) Since the Executive (POTUS) cannot be everywhere at once, he basically delegates his authority to prosecute to the various US attorneys nationwide.
4.) These attorneys follow the direction the POTUS lays down. So if one year, the POTUS decides there will be a focus on prosecuting money laundering over other crimes, it will be expected that the US attorneys will be aggressive in investigating and prosecuting such cases.
5.) These US attorneys owe their positions to Executive patronage. Which means that each US attorney serves at the pleasure of the POTUS.
6.) US attorneys serve 4 year terms at which time they are either let go or reappointed.
7.) The position as US attorney is therefore a POLITICAL position.
Therefore the POTUS can fire these attorneys ANYTIME HE WANTS TO AND FOR ANY REASON !!
In past presidencies it is natural that the POTUS would want "his people" in to make sure that his direction is followed. Past Presidents kind of eased out US attorneys as they went with one, HUGE, notable exception.
In 1993, Clinton fired 93 US attorneys (pretty much all of them)in order to put "his people" in place.
Noone batted an eye. No cries for an investigating from the Press or from Democrats who controlled Congress. In fact, we were told that these were political jobs and that Presidents always put their people in place. Which is not necessarily the case. Billie replaced all of the holdovers from previous GOP administrations without worrying about whether they were actually any good at their jobs. One of the attorneys he fired was investigating the Whitewater deal (anyone remember that?)
Fast forward 13 years and now a Republican president (after 6 years in office) fires a grand total of 8 US attorneys. Now I didn't learn any of the "New Math" but that would be... by my count... exactly 85 less than Bill Clinton fired in his first year in office. Even more important is the fact that while these US attorneys are mostly Clinton appointees they were RE-APPOINTED by Bush. So essentially he's just firing people he appointed.
Democrats in Congress (after winning the House and Senate on a themes of corruption) are naturally trying to play this up as another example of corruption.
I say let them come. Let them try to play this up and then SMACK them down with their own hypocrisy. Let the record show that Sens. Fienstein, Leahy, et al are guilty of playing politics and wasting the People's Time on matters that are not subject to their purview.
Let the sun shine in and let the public find out that the President has absolute authority to fire and appoint US attorneys and that the Congress should BUTT OUT !!
About the only thing I'm pissed about is AG Gonzales' performance to-date regarding this so-called "controversy". He seems to be shooting himself in the foot and if the Dems weren't howling for his scalp I'd be recommending he get fired. But since the Dems are trying to get him to resign as proxy to weaken Bush I'm standing by him.
So ... CONGRATULATIONS PRESIDENT BUSH !!! I'm glad to see you get your cajones back. You could see how pissed Sen. Schumer was when telling the press that because accounts would differ that it was important to get it under-oath and transcribed. They were hoping this would be like another Scooter Libby set-up and were hoping to nail Karl Rove
So go right ahead Pres. Bush.
Tell them to "pound sand".
Tell them - "no testimony under-oath".
And just to show them who is boss concerning whose prerogative it is to fire and appoint US attorneys...
Fire another 8 US attorneys !!!