Patterico's Pontifications


More on the Fired U.S. Attorneys

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:02 am

Remember, according to the New York Times:

In partisan Republican circles, the pursuit of voter fraud is code for suppressing the votes of minorities and poor people.

But for those of you who actually take voter fraud seriously, there’s some distressing information on the way a couple of the fired U.S. Attorneys handled voter fraud issues.

John McKay in Washington is the U.S. Attorney who said: “There was no evidence” of voter fraud in the 2004 Governor’s election. Stefan Sharkansky has done yeoman’s work on this issue, and has solid evidence of improper ballots counted. That by itself doesn’t show fraud, but Stefan alleges that election officials made false public statements about the improperly counted ballots, and further contends that records were altered to make the improper votes appear to be genuine votes:

[C]omputer records were modified so that many of the fatal pended voters were improperly recorded on the voter rolls as fully registered voters.

If Stefan is right, it sounds like at least enough to investigate further. Stefan doesn’t think McKay looked at all of his evidence.

Powerline has collected some links here, from an e-mail Stefan wrote them (he wrote me a similar e-mail). You’ll also want to read this.

As for David Iglesias, it turns out that had only one prosecutor working on public corruption cases.

No wonder things were going slowly.

By the way, I think we all agree that it was wrong for Pete Domenici to call Iglesias over a pending case. But I wonder why the charge is being led by Chuck Schumer, in light of this:

January 22, 2004
The Honorable James Comey
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530

Dear Deputy Attorney General Comey:

I write to request an update on the investigation into allegations that senior administration officials committed a federal felony by leaking the identity of a covert CIA operative.

The investigation has been underway for four months now and we have received no meaningful reports regarding the progress you are making. I realize there are limitations on information that can be disclosed regarding an ongoing criminal investigation, but, as we have discussed, a prosecutor has the responsibility to assure public confidence in criminal investigations, especially those of such a serious nature.

In the wake of recent calls by former intelligence operatives for a Congressional investigation, I write to ask that you publicly answer several questions regarding the progress you are making:

Has a grand jury been empaneled in this case? Have members of the White House staff signed waivers, permitting journalists to discuss confidential communications? If so, what percent of the White House staff has signed such waivers? Has anyone who has been asked to sign such a waiver refused to do so?

Have journalists been interviewed as part of the investigation? Has any journalist who has been released from confidentiality (assuming any has), refused to answer questions regarding previously confidential communications?

Were White House staffers ordered as a condition of employment to submit to interviews? Has anyone asked for or been offered immunity? If so, how many individuals fit in each category and what types of immunity have been asked for and offered to each?

What other information can you provide us regarding the progress you are making with this investigation?

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator

Also, a reader has sent along some interesting articles about Iglesias. I still need to verify their authenticity; I hope to have more tonight.

UPDATE: I verified them. They’re worth a new post.

6 Responses to “More on the Fired U.S. Attorneys”

  1. Stephan has performed excellent work using the Freedom of Information Act and peering through the records and envelopes.

    But the votes contested during the election trial were not ruled ‘legal’, it was ruled “We don’t know how they voted, and I’m responsible for adjusting the vote-count.” For 1135 votes.

    The ruling essentially makes contesting an election in Washington impossible – you have to investigate who the illegal vote was cast _for_, not whether the vote was legal in the first place.

    In Judge Bridge commentary, he slams King County for various improprieties, but (properly) follows the written word of the law as far as “Election Challenges” are concerned. Which was clearly written with organized ballot stuffing in mind, not individual issues sufficient to be 10x the size of the margin of victory. Reading Judge Bridge’s commentary, it seems like an open invitation to move up the legal ladder. Proceeding to the Washington Supreme Court is fairly pointless though.

    Another particularly galling piece was the admission under oath by the key absentee ballot person about how exactly she went about doing her ‘reconciliation.’ Like a teller, you have a running tally of exactly what should be the correct tally from a machine. But for the reconciliation, you’re supposed to actually count the contents of the machine. The goal is to find out if there’s been any error. Under oath, she was like “Oh…. really? That’s not how I do it, I write down the number the machine gives me…”. So… one entire level of accounting is pointless.

    Al (b624ac)

  2. […] Since I was away from the computer for most of the weekend and purposely avoided watching the news, I’m still getting back into the groove of finding out the latest on the ’scandal’ involving the 8 fired US attorneys. James Joyner and Patterico (more here) are the go-to guys to read on the most recent developments. […]

    Sister Toldjah » The latest on the fired US attorneys ’scandal’ (1466f5)

  3. patterico, i appreciate that you’re a republican who voted for this administration and still generally supports it, and i acknowledge the yeoman work you’re doing to mitigate/extenuate/justify/spin this thang, but it isn’t going to work. we’ve read the “loyal bushies” email, we know about the secret plan to install new u.s. attorneys without senate confirmation, while still appearing to seek it. you’re peeing into a gale-force wind here, and it’s only gonna blow back on you. turn around and face the other way, dude!

    assistant devil's advocate (fa0bfa)

  4. Patterico

    Was there anything to read into you title starting with MORE ON (say it real fast)

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  5. Of course the Republican appointed replacements immediately got back to investigating & prosecuting voter fraud and drug smuggling. NOT!

    Smitty (0c5714)

  6. You know, of course, that the Washington Secretary of State who oversaw the 2004 election was a Republican, right? Just one who didn’t get (or rejected) the Party über Alles message. I can think of reasons that the US Attorney didn’t look at all of Mr Sharkansky’s “evidence”, if indeed he did not. They remind me of the reasons that math departments don’t look at the “proofs” of angle trisection that come in the mail.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7d46f9)

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