Arianna Huffington's latest piece on HuffingtonPost makes the astute arguement that rather than allowing Bush to play beat the clock on the end of his administration, Congress should move toward Impeachment Hearings of Alberto ("Fredo") Gonzales now rather than later.
If the president continues trying to run out the clock on this scandal, Congress should immediately begin impeachment proceedings against Alberto Gonzales. It's the quickest way to the truth.
Appearing on CNN's Late Edition, [Vicky Toensing's Husband] Joe DiGenova said that if Congress insists on issuing subpoenas, the White House will surely contest them, and the ensuing litigation will last until the end of Bush's term. DiGenova's point was that Congress should go ahead and compromise, but my takeaway was just the opposite: if Bush's game is to stall, Congress should play the impeachment card since, as Robert Kuttner points out, "an impeachment inquiry could be completed in a matter of months."
Kuttner calls Gonzales the administration's "point man for serial assaults against the rule of law." And his sordid track record as White House counsel and AG bears this out: Guantanamo, the misuse of "national security letters," the abuse of the Patriot Act, the illegal spying on American citizens, and now his lies about his involvement in the U.S. Attorney firings.
Bush has 21 months left in office. That's far too long to continue with an Attorney General with such contempt for the law.
Although much of the question of "who really authorized the firings" has since shifted toward the Whitehouse and the 18-Day gap the question of Alberto's personal complicity in the firings and his false statements to congress.
I am fully committed, as the administration’s fully committed, to ensure that, with respect to every United States attorney position in this country, we will have a presidentially appointed, Senate-confirmed United States attorney.
I would never, ever make a change in a United States attorney for political reasons
Problem is, there's more than circumstantial evidence that he did exactly that.
[Fired U.S. Attorney] John McKay of Washington state, who had decided two years earlier not to bring voter fraud charges that could undermine a Democratic victory in a closely fought gubernatorial race, said that White House counsel Harriet Miers and her deputy William Kelley "actually asked me why Republicans in the state of Washington would be angry with me."
McKay said on NBC's "Meet the Press" that the question -- which he took as a challenge to his 2004 decision -- surprised him because the issue was reviewed by his office and supported by the FBI's office in Seattle. "We expected to be supported by people in Washington, D.C., when me make tough decisions like that," McKay said.
And so far has completely stood behind his decision.
Listen, we made a decision at the Department as to the appropriate way forward. There was nothing improper about the decision here ... There’s no evidence whatsoever, and it’s reckless and irresponsible to allege that these decisions were based in any way on improper motives.
Even if he claims he doesn't remember making it.
I was not involved in seeing any memos, was not involved in any discussions about what was going on ... That’s basically what I knew as attorney general.
With more and more information coming out from the various doco and email dumps, not to mention the testimony from Carlon Lam and David Iglesias that these firings were definately political...
"If [my firing] was performance based, there is no way they would have agreed to have allowed me to list them as a reference," he said. "In fact, they agreed, telling me that the true nature was political, not performance."
Congress already has more than enough information and evidence to force Gonzales out based on the numerous crimes he's either committed or aided with these firings including...
- Misrepresentations to Congress (18 U.S.C. § 1505)
- Obstruction of Justice (18 U.S.C. § 1512 (c))
- Witness Tampering (18 U.S.C. § 1512 (b))
Gonzales himself, since he no longer works in the White House, has no "exective priveledge" to hide behind. They must subpeona him to explain himself, and if he continues to lie - or worse refuses the subpeona as he's threatened to do - I say "Impeach His Punk Ass".