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McClatchy Newspapers breaks important new ground in the U.S. attorneys scandal by confirming that the roster of U.S. attorneys involved is still larger than previously suspected.
The Justice Department last year considered firing two U.S. attorneys in Florida and Colorado, states where allegations of voter fraud and countercharges of voter intimidation have flown in recent years, congressional investigators have learned. That brings to nine the number of battleground election states where the Bush administration set out to replace some of the nation’s top prosecutors. In at least seven states, it now appears, U.S. attorneys were fired or considered for firing as Republicans in those states urged investigations or prosecutions of alleged Democratic voter fraud.
The two prosecutors who were targeted were Gregory Miller, the U.S. attorney for the northern district of Florida in Tallahassee, and Bill Leone, the former acting U.S. attorney for Colorado. Miller appeared on multiple target lists for possible firing from early 2005 through last November, according to a senior congressional aide familiar with Justice Department documents. Miller kept his job.
The story also confirms that the U.S. Attorney in Minneapolis was fired because he refused to support a Justice Department effort to seek to purge voter rolls of presumptively Democratic voters.
This brings the number of U.S. attorney districts involved in the scandal to 15: twice as many as previously reported. And it helps explain why Alberto Gonzales repeatedly refused to answer questions about the number of U.S. attorneys involved in the purge.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”