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Archive for March 7th, 2007


A senior aide to Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) has been implicated in the controversial firing of eight U.S. attorneys by the Bush administration, which Democrats believe may have been politically motivated, The Hill reports.

Senate Democrats, having launched a probe into the matter, heard testimony before the Judiciary Committee in which former US Attorney John McKay “said that Ed Cassidy, then-chief of staff to Hastings, called him in 2004 to ask whether he was investigating allegations of voter fraud after a Democrat won the Washington state governor’s race in a third recount,” Susan Crabtree writes for The Hill.

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Vermont Votes to Impeach Bush/Cheney

The Nation — When Vermont Governor Jim Douglas, a Republican with reasonably close ties to President Bush, asked if there was any additional business to be considered at the town meeting he was running in Middlebury, Ellen McKay popped up and proposed the impeachment of Bush and Vice President
Dick Cheney.

The governor was not amused. As moderator of the annual meeting, he tried to suggest that the proposal to impeach — along with another proposal to withdraw U.S. troops from
Iraq — could not be voted on.

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INSIDE THE JURY ROOM


WHAT THE JURY THOUGHT, DAY BY DAY, WITNESS BY WITNESS, AT THE SCOOTER LIBBY TRIAL
By Denis Collins, Juror #9

I. Deliberation Day

“This is a case about memory, about recollections and about words.” We’ve heard from the fighting Irishman and weeping Wells, a gaggle of Pulitzer Prize winners, and some of the best and brightest from the CIA, State Department, FBI and office of the Vice President. The Honorable Reggie Walton has just provided us final instructions.

Deliberations in the case of the United States vs. I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby in District Court for the District of Columbia are ready to commence, when one of the jurors offers an unsolicited statement regarding the solemn task before us.

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Prosecutors Say They Felt Pressured, Threatened

Hill Republicans, Justice Dept. Cited

Six fired U.S. attorneys testified on Capitol Hill yesterday that they had separately been the target of complaints, improper telephone calls and thinly veiled threats from a high-ranking Justice Department official or members of Congress, both before and after they were abruptly removed from their jobs.

In back-to-back hearings in the Senate and House, former U.S. attorney David C. Iglesias of New Mexico and five other former prosecutors recounted specific instances in which some said they felt pressured by Republicans on corruption cases and one said a Justice Department official warned him to keep quiet or face retaliation.

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Fitzgerald: No further investigation planned


In a lengthy press conference with reporters after the announcement of four guilty verdicts, federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald said that he did not expect the results of the trial of former White House advsier I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby to result in further investigations or charges. He also promised “appropriate” support for any Congressional investigation that might follow the trial.

“I do not expect to file any further charges, the investigation was inactive prior to the trial,” the Chicago-based federal attorney who led the prosecution said. “We’re all going back to our day jobs.”

However, Fitzgerald did concede “If new information comes to light, of course we’ll do that.”

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After four guilty verdicts were issued in the trial of I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, one blogger who helped cover the trial heavily at the blog FireDogLake said “It’s a good day to be an American, huh?”

The remark was made by Jane Hamsher who, with several partners and guest-bloggers, provided daily, nearly instantaneous coverage of the trial in an activity which seemed in some ways to redefine the free flow of information.

“To say it was tense in the courtroom as we were waiting for a verdict would be an understatement,” Hamsher also said. “My heart was pounding in my chest as it all started to become real for me, all we’d done, how far we’d come.”

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Will a blood clot force Cheney to step down?


Dick Cheney has been diagnosed with a blood clot in his left leg, leading to speculation he will be forced to resign as U.S. Vice-President.

The 66-year-old has a history of major health problems, including four heart attacks, and has undergone quadruple-bypass surgery.

He is a driving force in both the war in Iraq and the ‘war on terror’ and his resignation would be a huge loss to George Bush.

The vice-president is the leader of Washington’s neo-conservatives and is believed to be a dominant influence on Mr Bush’s military and foreign policies.

He is also believed to be the president’s closest political friend.

There has been widespread speculation that if Mr Cheney is unable to complete his term in office through ill health he will be replaced by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, another personal friend of Mr Bush.

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Libby Found Guilty in CIA Leak Trial


WASHINGTON — Once the closest adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was convicted Tuesday of lying and obstructing a leak investigation that shook the top levels of the Bush administration.

He is the highest-ranking White House official convicted in a government scandal since National Security Adviser John Poindexter in the Iran-Contra affair two decades ago.

In the end, jurors said they did not believe Libby’s main defense: that he hadn’t lied but merely had a bad memory.

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