Robert Greenwald, director of Uncovered, Outfoxed and Iraq For Sale has produced a video which calls for the Impeachment of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales based on his false House and Senate Testimony on the phantom firings of possibly as many as dozen U.S. Attorneys.
It's about time...
The video recounts that on 03/12/07 Alberto Gonzales Stated that...
"I was not involved in seeing any memos, was not involved in any discussions about what was going on."
Following that statement Kyle Sampson testified to whether Gonzales had "been involved in any discussions."
"So he (Gonzales) was involved in discussions in contrast to his statement" this month? Specter asked.
"Yes." Sampson replied.
Sen. Charles Schumer then asked about Gonzales also claiming that he saw no documents on this matter.
Sampson replied: "I don't think it's entirely accurate."
Schumer: "There was repeated discussions??
Sampson: "Yes...at least five."
Gonzales later testified to the Senate that...
I made the decision
Even though he also said...
I don't remember making the decision
As a result of his testimony many Senator, even Republicans, were not amused.
Arlen Specter. (R-PA)
The Pennsylvania Republican said Gonzales' description was "significantly if not totally at variance with the facts."
Tom Coburn (R-OK)
Mr. Attorney General, it’s my considered opinion that the exact same standards should be applied to you in how this was handled. It was handled incompetently, the communication was atrocious. It was inconsistent. It’s generous to say that there was misstatements, that’s a generous statement. And I believe you ought to suffer the consequences that these others have suffered, and I believe the best way to put this behind us is your resignation.
"Putting this behind us" shouldn't be the goal, finding the truth and upholding the law should be. The fact is that there have been multiple Federal crimes which need to be looked at in this firing situation, some of which were laid out Adam Cohen in the New York Times.
There's Lying to Congress.
Misrepresentations to Congress. The relevant provision, 18 U.S.C. § 1505, is very broad. It is illegal to lie to Congress, and also to "impede" it in getting information. Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty indicated to Congress that the White House’s involvement in firing the United States attorneys was minimal, something that Justice Department e-mail messages suggest to be untrue.
As it turns out, McNulty was lied to about the involvement of the White House - by Karl Rove. This leads us to our next crime, Witness Tampering.
Witness Tampering. 18 U.S.C. § 1512 (b) makes it illegal to intimidate Congressional witnesses. Michael Elston, Mr. McNulty’s chief of staff, contacted one of the fired attorneys, H. E. Cummins, and suggested, according to Mr. Cummins, that if he kept speaking out, there would be retaliation. Mr. Cummins took the call as a threat, and sent an e-mail message to other fired prosecutors warning them of it. Several of them told Congress that if Mr. Elston had placed a similar call to one of their witnesses in a criminal case, they would have opened an investigation of it.
If these calls from McNulty's chief were made under the direction of either McNulty or Gonzales - both should be deep trouble. And lastly there's Obstruction of Justice.
As part of the Sarbanes-Oxley reforms, Congress passed an extremely broad obstruction of justice provision, 18 U.S.C. § 1512 (c), which applies to anyone who corruptly "obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so," including U.S. attorney investigations.
David Iglesias, the New Mexico United States attorney, says Senator Pete Domenici, Republican of New Mexico, called him and asked whether he intended to bring indictments in a corruption case against Democrats before last November’s election. Mr. Iglesias said he "felt pressured" by the call. If members of Congress try to get a United States attorney to indict people he wasn’t certain he wanted to indict, or try to affect the timing of an indictment, they may be violating the law.
This also would apply to Gonzales, if he fired any of these Attorney's simply because they did persue legitimate investigation or didn't persue illigitimate ones.
Such as whether or not to implement a bogus investigation to the Washington State Governor's Race.
"Fired U.S. Attorney John McKay said Sunday he believes the Justice Department is covering up the real reason for his ouster. ... ‘I still don’t know if the 2004 governor’s election was the principal reason I was asked to step down,’ McKay said in a speech. ... ‘If it was, I think it is an entirely improper and perhaps illegal reason for my termination," said McKay.’"
Hmm.. ya think?
Here's what NY Governor and Hero State AG Elliot Spitzer thinks.
I think it is a blight upon the Department of Justice that Alberto Gonzales is still the attorney general," said New York state Gov. Eliot Spitzer (D), who was also previously the state’s Attorney General. "We are brought back to the days, the dark days of the Nixon era, where the tentacles of politics reach into the Department of Justice and threaten our core notions of what justice means."
Democrats say they're serious about holding the no-confidence vote, but it's not clear they will be able to make it happen. The Senate has a full plate this week, with the debate over immigration, and wrangling over the Iraq spending bill. In addition, Republican leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., indicated he'd be unlikely to let a simple no-confidence vote proceed.
"In the Senate, nobody gets a clear shot," he said.
Ain't that the truth?
At any rate it remains clear that the Fredo isn't going to resign, and the President isn't going to ask him too - Bush can't afford to let Gonzales go since with him in place the White House can play rope-a-dope with all the Congressional Subpoena's they want.
"In a letter to White House Counsel Fred Fielding Monday, Reps. John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) and Linda Sanchez (D-CA) expressed their ‘extreme disappointment’ in the White House’s unwillingness to cooperate in their investigation into the firings of U.S. attorneys and threatened a ‘compulsory process’ if the White House continues to be unresponsive." Conyers and Sanchez note that despite the central role that White House officials appear to play in this scandal, they have yet to turn over a single document or conduct a single interview.
President Bush says a Senate vote of no confidence in Attorney General Alberto Gonzales would be "pure political theater." Bush added, "He has got my confidence. He has done nothing wrong. ... I stand by Al Gonzales, and I would hope that people would...get the job done of passing legislation, as opposed to figuring how to be actors on the political theater stage."
The only real option left, is to Impeachment Gonzales - Which will probably start to become a serious topic once Monica Goodling finally testifies tomorrow and let's us know what Gonzales really knew, and when he knew it about the Attorney Firings.
Even without Goodling there's still the various issues of attempting to strong-Arm his predeccesor into implementing an illegal wire-tap program, The Voter Suppression, the War Crimes and the Torture.
So in the meantime - for those who really don't need the Goodling shoe to drop, or want to have their foot already on the accelerator when it does - you can visit ImpeachGonzales.Org and sign the official petition to have this human boil forcibly removed from the Ass of American Justice system.
I figure a couple million signees just might turn some heads in Congress.
Vyan(Just for the record the petition counter was 36,194 when I first posted this)