Tuesday, May 19, 2009

InstaKaus worries about U.S. Attorney politicization

Kaus P.S.s:

Will Obama rescue John Edwards by replacing the U.S. Attorney who is investigating him? ... If he does, will Josh Marshall kick up a fuss about it? ... [Thanks to alert reader R.H. ... See also Insta]

When you hold your nose and see also "Insta" you get an excerpt from the same story and the rhetorical question:

If Republicans were doing this, would it be a scandal?

Of course, what's actually being done is... very little. Nothing, in fact. Not only has the U.S. attorney in question not been fired, to protect John Edwards or for any other reason, but the only reason to think he will be soon is because U.S. attorneys are frequently replaced when a new administration takes over. In fact the story notes that by historical standards Obama has been taking his sweet time replacing the Bush-appointed USAs, including this guy Holding who continues to investigate two high profile Democrats.

The News Observer ran with the headline "Democrats fix sights on GOP prosecutor" without any actual evidence that they are doing so (i.e. singling out this particular USA for removal). They mention that junior senator Kay Hagan has been tasked with finding a replacement for Holding, and imply that she has Democratic sympathies, but there's literally nothing connecting any part of the U.S. Attorney process to the investigations of John Edwards or former governor Mike Easley.

Don't get me wrong, if an analogous situation arose in which it became clear that the Obama administration were axing U.S. attorneys for prosecuting Democrats or not prosecuting Republicans, as the Bush administration did, that would be very bad. It's just that as far as we know it hasn't, um, happened yet.

No comments: