LR issue goes national | Arkansas Blog

LR issue goes national



As we predicted, the complaint that started with Sen.Mark Pryor over Bush's disdain for the confirmation process for U.S. attorneys has gone national. It turns out that the forced retirement of Bud Cummins and installation of a successor, without a confirmation process, has been replicated elsewhere with the help of a previously unnoticed exemption in the Patriot Act.

The NY Times editorializes today, in a sharp contrast to the no-foul apologia issued earlier by the D-G, which  worships Tim Griffin, the Karl Rove lieutenant installed in LR by Bush. (The D-G never said why, if Griffin is so great, the Bush administration fears the customary confirmation hearing.) From the Times:

It is particularly dangerous to put United States attorneys’ offices in the hands of political operatives because federal prosecutors have extraordinary power to issue subpoenas and bring criminal charges. The Senate should fix the law and investigate whether such offices in Arkansas and elsewhere are being politicized.

... There could be unsavory political reasons for putting a party operative in charge of federal criminal investigations in Little Rock, which has been home to two possible presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and former Gov. Mike Huckabee. But it is not necessary to leap to extravagant conclusions. United States attorneys are so powerful that their impartiality must be beyond question. One way to ensure that is to require them to submit to questions from the Senate, and face a confirmation vote.

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