SIGN IN to access Harper’s Magazine
1. Sign in to Customer Care using your account number or postal address.
2. Select Email/Password Information.
3. Enter your new information and click on Save My Changes.
Subscribers can find additional help here. Not a subscriber? Subscribe today!
Today the machinery of justice in America strains under a heavy hand of misdirection coming out of Washington. And now Congress has decided to take up one of the most shameful among many acts of injustice that the Bush Administration has committed. The House Judiciary Committee has demanded that the Department of Justice surrender documents connected with the prosecution of former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman.
[House Committee Chair] Conyers, D-Mich., said in a press release that the committee is “exploring claims that (Siegelman’s) recent conviction, among others, may have been a part of a pattern of selective, political prosecutions by a number of U.S. Attorneys across the country.”
Here’s some detail from Chairman Conyers’s actual letter to Alberto Gonzales, for further clarification:
Allegations that even one of the nation’s 93 U.S. Attorneys is improperly prosecuting or failing to prosecute Democratic officials based on their political affiliation have the potential to taint and undermine the legitimacy of our entire criminal justice system. In fact, the perception that U.S. Attorney’s offices are improperly exercising their prosecutorial powers in a partisan manner is already leading to an increase of motions in court by defense counsel. The Los Angeles Times recently reported that several defense attorneys are citing the allegations of selective prosecution as evidence that federal prosecutors are bringing criminal charges based upon improper political motives. These defense attorneys allege that prosecutors consider a target’s political affiliations when deciding whether or not to issue indictments.
In order to assure the public that everyone, no matter their political affiliation, is treated equally under the law, we are initially requesting documents relating to the Department’s handling of three cases, and in particular any memoranda, analysis, or other communications discussing whether and to what extent criminal charges should be and were pursued against the individuals listed below.
The strange steps taken against the man who was once Karl Rove’s nemesis and the most popular Democrat in Alabama will figure dead-center in the investigation. The Department of Justice has been directed to turn over documents related to the prosecution.
At the same time, a good deal more information has become available to us establishing gross irregularities in the prosecution and trial of Don Siegelman. More on this shortly. In the meantime: truth is on the march.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
Amount that President Obama has added to America’s “brand value” according to the Nation Brands Index:
A study suggested that the health effects of exposure to nuclear radiation at Chernobyl were no worse than ill health resulting from smoking and normal urban air pollution.
A former New York City police officer who had been arrested in 2012 for exchanging online messages about cooking women alive and eating them, and for illegally accessing data about potential victims in law-enforcement databases, was sentenced to time served.
Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!
“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”