Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficial. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding.”     Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis

March 22, 2007

The U.S. Attorneys Fight: It’s Gonna Go Nuclear

by Doug Mataconis

According to The Politico, both Republicans and Democrats see advantage to be gained the coming confrontation over the U.S. Attorney firings:

The White House and the Democrats who run Congress both see political advantage in the ongoing fight for public testimony by presidential advisers about the controversial firing of eight U.S. attorneys. And both have settled on what they believe will be durable messages for a potentially protracted confrontation, although one that is likely to stop short of a historic conflagration at the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Republican mantra on Capitol Hill can be summed up this way: “Democrats can’t legislate, so they want to investigate.” The gist of the Democratic talking points is: “Republicans want to hide from the truth.”

(…)

For Democrats, the brouhaha is a chance to revel in their new power, an ability to spotlight an embarrassing issue for an administration obsessed with secrecy.

So, it’s just like a lot of Washington “scandals.” Everyone agrees that nothing illegal happened, but both sides are willing to fight because they see advantage to it.

One Republican official said the president’s supporters are thrilled to see him on the offensive. “Our base is excited again,” the official said. “We’re back on our toes and off our heels. Everybody agrees we handled it wrong, but so what? So you’re going to make this a constitutional crisis?”

At the moment, that would appear to be the case.


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