August 29, 2007

Who Forced Bush to Give Up Alberto Gonzales?

David Kurtz noted that one of the funnier spins being trotted out after Gonzales resigned is now that he is (almost) gone, Bush will take the opportunity to make nice with Congress. Sure wish I could find some of what they are smoking. Because it's clear these dreamers have never understood that Bush's natural instinct is to be a bully. Once upon a time he was his daddy's enforcer.

A more interesting question is what was behind Bush's petulance the other day? It wasn't that long ago that Bush was going to stand by his man no matter what and Bush is a very, very stubborn man. Someone forced him to give up Gonzo, and it wasn't Gonzo. So who was it? Because Gonzo was his last homie and now he gets to be surrounded by Dick's and dad's friends, with Dick having the upperhand.

It's instructive to look back at a piece in Time's August 3rd issue which laid out why Bush would never let Gonzo go. Gonzo was the White House firewall from investigations and George believed that if the Congress forced Bush to fire Gonzo, then the next target would be Rove and then directly into the White House. So what changed from this perspective? Obviously one difference was Karl left to spent time with his family, so one of the lines into the White House was cut. Then there was this:

A post-Gonzales DOJ would be in the hands of a nonpartisan, tough prosecutor, not a political hand. Newly appointed Deputy Attorney General Craig Morford is in line to take over until a new Attorney General could be confirmed. Morford, a 20-year veteran of the department, was brought in to investigate the botched trial of the first major federal antiterrorism case after 9/11. He is in the mold of James Comey, the former Deputy Attorney General who stood up to the White House over its domestic-eavesdropping program. Even New York Senator Charles Schumer, one of Gonzales' harshest critics, called Morford's appointment a positive step. Over the past six months, more than half a dozen top political appointees have left the department amid scandal. The unprecedented coziness that once existed between the Justice Department and the White House now remains solely in the person of Gonzales.

Isn't that interesting? It seems that who ever forced Bush to lose his bud found a way to keep the DoJ from falling in the hands of someone that would put the interests of the country above the interests of Bush. This starts to make it more likely that Bush will try to run out the clock with Solicitor General Paul Clement, doesn't it?

One other question: how did Bush come to know of Alberto Gonzales? It seems that their old friend, Karl Rove, was instrumental in bringing Gonzo to the Bushes attention. So the king maker personally selected the legal counselor. How very interesting.

Posted by Mary at August 29, 2007 05:09 PM | US Politics | TrackBack(1) | Technorati links |

I've been asking myself that same question:

I must say that [the Gonzalez resignation] comes as a surprise. I figured the one person who'd be there at the end of the Bush Administration would be faithful old Abu, the man who always covers for the President. Unfortunately, it looks like the heat is just getting to be too much. That is to say, it's too much for his boss, not Abu. I think you can take it as a given that Abu's doing what he's told, and now he's been told to resign. The question is, why? My guess is that it has something to do with plans by the House and Senate judiciary committees to continue investigating the U.S. Attorney firings, along with the Justice Department's refusal to investigate the contempt of Congress complaint against Harriet Miers, the former White House Counsel who refused to appear before Congress after being subpoenaed.

I'm not all that sure it's anything to do with Congress, though. I just can't think of a better explanation.

Posted by: Cujo359 at September 1, 2007 12:02 PM