Monday, August 27, 2007

Rove And Gonzales: Resignation Should Not Equal Off The Hook

The world seemed just a little bit brighter this morning as the radio brought forth the news about the resignation of Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales. It comes on the heels of Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove's recent announcement of his intention to step down at the end of September. Both leave under heavy clouds of suspicion regarding their involvement in activities of questionable legality. Their collective works allegedly include;

• Releasing the identity of a covert CIA operative to the media.
• Crafting guidelines for interrogating techniques that are widely considered to be torture.
• Failing to abide by or enforce Federal guidelines for preserving communications records.
• Bypassing existing laws regarding warrantless surveillance.
• Participating in the dismissal of eight U.S. Attorneys for political reasons.
• Suppressing the right of accused terror suspects to legal counsel and a jury trial.

It is a long and shameful record and our country is better off without their continued service.

Both men have garnered increasing attention from Congress and it would be easy for them to now turn their collective attention elsewhere. To do so, however, would be tantamount to stopping treatment for a disease once the obvious symptoms have gone.

It's sometimes the hidden things that will kill you!

Given the close personal relationship that both Mr. Rove and Mr. Gonzales enjoy with the President, it is likely that they will remain influential. By being out of the Washington limelight, they'll be better able to exert it away from the increasingly watchful gaze of the Democratic controlled Congress. It's critical now, more than ever, that investigations continue.

Some say that the country doesn't need partisan investigations, that to do so amounts to political payback. I disagree. Free roaming inquiries into alleged shady land deals that then morph into allegations of sexual harassment are partisan. Focused investigations into allegations of the suppression of constitutional rights, treason, or violations of the Geneva Conventions are not. They are due diligence, and due diligence lies at the very heart of our system of checks and balances.

Under the 109th Congress, the Executive Branch ran amok. If the 110th does not fully assert it's Constitutional authority and reign the administration back in, then it's members have abandoned their oaths of office.

In order to ensure that this doesn't happen, we need to do our due diligence and let them know that we expect our rights to be protected. Congressional vacations end on September 4. Give them a call: 202-224-3121.


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