Ode to Alberto
By Lee Russ
Monday, March 26, 2007 at 03:40 PM
Let's review Gonzales's claims to the media as the White House now tries to spin the idea that there was no "inconsistency" between Gonzales claiming he didn't know much about the US Attorney firings and the recent evidence that he attended at least one hour long meeting at which he approved the then- list of six attorneys to be fired. Lets go back to what Alberto actually said to the public media back on March 13.From the DOJ transcript of Gonzales's remarks:
ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: What I know is that there began a process of evaluating strong performers, not-as-strong performers, and weak performers. And so far as I knew my chief of staff was involved in the process of determining who were the weak performers. Where were the districts around the country where we could do better for the people in that district, and that's what I knew. But again, with respect to this whole process, like every CEO, I am ultimately accountable and responsible for what happens within the department. But that is in essence what I knew about the process; was not involved in seeing any memos, was not involved in any discussions about what was going on. That's basically what I knew as the Attorney General. ... QUESTION: How could your chief of staff be working closely with the President on which U.S. attorneys to be let go and you not know the specifics?
ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: Well, again, as -- I accept responsibility for everything that happens here within this department. But when you have 110,000 people working in the department obviously there are going to be decisions that I'm not aware of in real time. Many decisions are delegated. We have people who were confirmed by the Senate who, by statute, have been delegated authority to make decisions.
Mr. Sampson was charged with directing the process to ascertain who were weak performers, where we could do better in districts around the country. That is a responsibility that he had during the transition. We worked with respect to U.S. attorneys and presidential personnel at the White House. That was the role that he had when he was in the counsel's office. That was the role that he had when he was at the Department of Justice under General Ashcroft and so naturally when questions came up with respect to the evaluation of performances of U.S. Attorneys it would be Kyle Sampson who would drive that effort.
QUESTION: With all due respect, your -- the sense of being a CEO sounds a little bit like Ken Lay, that he was so detached from the day to day operations. How can you make that statement given the fact that you spend an enormous time at the White House and your chief of staff reports to you and spends, you know, all day with you?
ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: Again, I accept responsibility for what happened here and I regret the fact that information was inadequately shared with individuals within the department of Justice and that consequently information was shared with the Congress that was incomplete. But the charge for the chief of staff here was to drive this process and the mistake that occurred here was that information that he had was not shared with individuals within the department who was then going to be providing testimony and information to the Congress.
QUESTION: (Off mic.)
ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: I just described for Pete the extent of my -- of the knowledge that I had about the process. I never saw documents. We never had a discussion about where things stood. What I knew was that there was ongoing effort that was led by Mr. Sampson, vetted through the Department of Justice, to ascertain where we could make improvements in U.S. attorney performances around the country.
Yes sir, you can see how those comments would not exclude the possibility that, well before the actual firings, Gonzo sat at a lengthy meeting where there were six US Attorneys' names on a list of people to be fired, and discussed.....What?
Do you think it took an hour for everybody to just read the names? Once they read the names, what did they do for the next 57 or 58 minutes, talk about their favorite moment of George Bush bible reading?
Ode to Alberto:
You lied, my friend, you lied, And now you make it worse, By endlessly denying each chapter & each verse.
You lied, you cad, you lied, and now you lie again, When all can see how bad you lied, To whom, and where, and when.
Bite the bullet Alberto. It only hurts until the brain goes numb.