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Tag: Bush

Senate Confirms Nashville U.S. Atty. Jerry E. Martin

Jerry Martin

Jerry Martin

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Jerry E. Martin was confirmed as the U.S. Attorney of Nashville on Wednesday night, the website Main Justice reported.

Martin will replace U.S. Attorney Ed Yarbrough, a Bush appointee, who announced that he has accepted a position with the law firm Walker Tipps and Malone in Nashville.

Main Justice, which closely tracks appointments of U.S. Attorneys, said the Senate has now confirmed 48 U.S. Attorney appointments under the new administration.

Yarbrough told he Nashville Post:

“There is no greater job in the American system of justice than United States Attorney, with its myriad responsibilities and potential for public service. I have been proud to lead the office in Nashville for two and a half years and see firsthand the amazing capabilities of the dedicated lawyers and staff here. The people of Middle Tennessee can be secure in the knowledge that federal prosecutors are looking out for them and doing everything in their power to make our city and state a safer place to live and work.”

Baton Rouge U.S. Atty. David Dugas Stepping Down This Week

baton rouge mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Baton Rouge U.S. Attorney David R. Dugas, a Bush appointee who took office five weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, announced he is stepping down at the end of the week to join a national law firm with offices in Louisiana.

“Serving as United States Attorney has been the greatest honor and most rewarding experience of my professional career,” Dugas said in a statement. “I have had the privilege of serving alongside dedicated and professional public servants in the United States Attorney’s Office and in the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in this district and across the country. I owe a deep debt of gratitude to President Bush and to President Obama for allowing me to serve the cause of justice in their administrations.”

Duggas noted in his press release that he was appointed Director of the National Center for Disaster Fraud (formerly the Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force National Command Center) in December of 2005 “and personally directed the design, creation and operation of the Command Center since its inception.”

Dugas also noted that “he spearheaded the creation of a dedicated FBI Public Corruption squad in Baton Rouge as well as the FBI’s Public Corruption and White Collar Crime Task Force.”

The Salahis Weren’t the First to Embarrass the Secret Service

The publicity seeking Salahis/facebook photo
The publicity seeking Salahis/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
For Sphere.com (A New AOL News Site)

WASHINGTON – The Salahis were hardly the first to embarrass the Secret Service by crashing presidential security. And it will probably happen again.

One man did it twice. The Rev. Rich C. Weber shook hands with President Clinton at his second inauguration, then was back four years later in 2001, welcoming President George W. Bush with a brief conversation.

There were also more frightening incidents — a man who hopped the White House gate with a .38-caliber revolver and got within 50 feet of the residence. Another man crashed a plane into the White House.

But until Tareq and Michaele Salahi attended a state dinner uninvited last week, even posing for pictures, maybe none of the intruders displayed quite the aplomb that Robert Latta did on Jan. 20, 1985.

Latta, a 45-year-old water meter reader from Denver, sneaked into the East Entrance of the White House with the Marine Band about two hours before President Reagan was sworn in for his second term.

For Full Story

More Bush U.S. Attys. Clinging to Office Longer than Predecessors in Clinton Admin.

Bush Holdover U.S. Atty. Mary Beth Buchanan

Bush Holdover U.S. Atty. Mary Beth Buchanan

At this point, there may be far more Bush holdovers serving as U.S. Attorneys than there were during the Clinton regime. Still,  the current selection process for U.S. Attorneys remains, in most instances, very political and partisan. Too bad. It would be nice, and better for the sake of justice, if that weren’t the case.

By Andrew Ramonas
Main Justice
WASHINGTON — U.S. Attorneys appointed by President Bush are clinging to office longer than their predecessors in the Clinton administration did, according to Justice Department and Senate data.

More than eight months after Democrat Barack Obama took office, 23 Senate-confirmed U.S. Attorneys from the Bush administration remain in office. Another eight U.S. Attorneys who were appointed during the Bush administration, but not confirmed by the Senate, are also still in office.

That makes a total of 31 Bush-era appointees who are still running the top federal prosecuting offices around the country, out of 93 U.S. Attorney positions nationwide.

For Full Story

Ex-Homeland Chief Tom Ridge Criticizes Waterboarding and Indefinite Detention

Tom Ridge/gov photo

Tom Ridge/gov photo

It’s too bad this happens in every administration: Some high-ranking people only seem to be willing to  speak up after it’s all over. The lesson here: express yourself to the powers that be when you’re there, not when you’ve left and decided to cash in with a book.

By Michael Scherer
Time
WASHINGTON — Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge does not want to “second-guess” the motivations of his former colleagues in the Bush Administration.

But with a new memoir, The Test of Our Times, about to hit bookstores, he is ready to talk about all the second thoughts he has been having.

For instance, he thinks waterboarding “was and is torture,” and he wishes the Bush Administration had not permitted it.

He thinks President George W. Bush should have gone to Congress sooner to get permission to expand the National Security Agency’s domestic-spying program.

He even frowns upon the Bush policy of indefinite detention for suspected terrorists, a policy that the Obama Administration has hinted it may continue to some degree.

For Full Story

Ridge Backpedals on Accusations that Bush Admin. Played Politics with Color Code Alerts

There’s a reason Tom Ridge was not effective as he could have been as our nation’s Homeland Security chief. He was left out of key meetings. He didn’t always get necessary info from the FBI. In his new book, he suggests that the Bush administration may have played politics with the color code alerts like orange. Now he’s backing down. Call it the weenie factor, call it what you like.

color-codes

By Mimi Hall
USA TODAY
WASHINGTON – Former Homeland Security secretary Tom Ridge, speaking for the first time about accusations made in his new book, says he did not mean to suggest that other top Bush administration officials were playing politics with the nation’s security before the 2004 presidential election.

“I’m not second-guessing my colleagues,” Ridge said in an interview about The Test of Our Times, which comes out Tuesday and recounts his experiences as head of the nation’s homeland security efforts in the first several years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

For Full Story

No Surprise: Tom Ridge Says He Was Pressured to Raise Terror Alert Before 2004 Election

Just as we suspected. There was something fishy about the code orange alerts. Sure it’s hard to believe politics could play into this all in a town like Washington where we know everything is above board and transparent.

Tom Ridge/gov photo

Tom Ridge/gov photo

By DEB RIECHMANN and EILEEN SULLIVAN
WASHINGTON — Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge claims in a new book that he was pressured by other members of President George W. Bush’s Cabinet to raise the nation’s terror alert level just before the 2004 presidential election.

Ridge says he objected to raising the security level despite the urgings of former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and then-Attorney General John Ashcroft, according to a publicity release from Ridge’s publisher. He said the episode convinced him to follow through with his plans to leave the administration; he resigned on Nov. 30, 2004.

For Full Story

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

N.Y. Times Editorial Urges Authorities to Keep Digging into U.S. Atty. Firings

Karl Rove

Karl Rove

By The New York Times
Editorial Page

Documents released by Congress, including testimony from Karl Rove, offer powerful new evidence that the Bush administration fired top prosecutors who refused to use their offices to promote the electoral fortunes of Republicans.

Turning law enforcement into a tool of partisan politics is a serious offense, and a Justice Department investigation is under way. Congress must also continue its investigation and call Mr. Rove and others to testify publicly so the American people can hear for themselves how the justice system was hijacked.

The materials released on Tuesday paint an ugly picture of fair-minded prosecutors under siege by the White House for refusing to politicize their offices. And it puts Mr. Rove, former President George W. Bush’s chief political operative, at the center of it.

To Read More

Read Kansas City Star Editorial on Firing of Local U.S. Attorney