Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Bring Me The Head Of Alberto Gonzales, Pt. II

"We have been patient in allowing the department to work through its concerns regarding the sensitive nature of some of these materials," House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., wrote Gonzales in a letter accompanying the subpoena. "Unfortunately, the department has not indicated any meaningful willingness to find a way to meet our legitimate needs."

Conyers characterized the subpoena as a last resort after weeks of negotiations with Justice over documents and e-mails the committee wants in its pursuit of whether any of the firings were improper.

Meaningful willingness. To quote Leonard Cohen: "Now in Vienna, there are ten pretty women. There's a shoulder where Death comes to cry. There's a lobby with nine hundred windows. There's a tree where the doves come to die."

Yeah. Those doves died, alright, and we can smell them. To be clear, this subpoena is only for documents because they weren't forthcoming in a reasonable period of time. But behind them is Gonza-Lo, who according to Time Magazine, has been intensively prepping for the past couple of weeks for upcoming testimony in front of Congress. He's been faring poorly in the role-playing games. (Perhaps because he's guilty as hell.) His Justice Department leaned heavy on its attorneys for years to prosecute Democrats for vote fraud and anything else they could grab, consistent with the dirtiest kind of machine politics. But this time machine politics was conducted on a centrally directed, national level, and there are e-mail chains aplenty to prove it.

Despite being cogs in the machine, some of the advocated cases were so baseless the Pug attorneys pushed back, and they got fired. Justice stalled on handing over the unredacted documents about those cases and attorneys, thus the congressional subpoena. Too much substance was blacked out. Probably some documents will have to go "missing" via technical glitches, and the White House will stone-wall to the last.

Gonzales will dole out deniability like a manure spreader in May. That's what all the role-playing was for. If Congress doesn't cross-examine him in public view, it's mostly academic. However, this subpoena is an early signal from Congress to the White House that it's going in the direction of grandstanding, and Congress is feeling its oaths. They've got the bit in their teeth, and they're not going to let go.

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