U.S. attorneygate | Arkansas Blog

U.S. attorneygate

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Brummett rummages through the contradictory testimony of a former White House political operative last week about the U.S. attorney shuffle and finds yet another Bush administration mess.

The real significance has to do with a conversation I had with a Republican insider. This fellow said the Bush administration managed to maltreat both Cummins, a loyal Republican who got ousted, and Tim Griffin, the loyal Republican whom Bush put in to replace him. I said that was a metaphor for all of the Bush presidency. The man said, alas, he had to agree.

There's a hint that maybe Tim Griffin could have been the source of the notion expressed by aide Sara Taylor that Bud Cummins was lazy.

Asked about that before senators last week, Taylor said she wanted to apologize to Cummins. She said her characterization was unkind and unnecessary, based only on something she'd heard.

U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, freshman Democrat of Rhode Island and former U.S. attorney himself, pressed her on how she came to hear such a thing. She invoked her handy-dandy presidential privilege. That would mean the assessment was made in the White House by persons working for the president.

A lot of people have noticed that the only person who worked both for Cummins in the U.S. attorney's office in Little Rock and later with Taylor in the White House was Griffin himself. I've made telephonic and other electronic efforts to ask Griffin whether he ever said to anyone in the White House that Cummins was lazy. He has not responded.

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