Rove Deadline Delayed

John Conyers has delayed Rove’s deadline to give a deposition by three weeks–from February 2 to February 23.

But before he left office, Bush, acting through former White House Counsel Fred Fielding, decided not to respond to any congressional subpoenas. Bush, citing executive privilege, asserted an “absolute immunity” claim in responding to such subpoenas, meaning senior Bush aides were directed not to even appear when subpoenaed.

Obama and his legal advisors have rejected that view as an overbroad reading of the president’s authority, but they have yet to fully formulate their own response to the question.

Conyers had demanded that Rove comply with the subpoena by next Tuesday, Feb. 2, but the deadline has been extended to Feb. 23, according to sources close to the issue.

I realize at least one of you was planning your birthday around Rove’s testimony (though it’s not yet clear whether it’ll be public or not), but I think this is a good thing.

I expect Obama to reject at least some parts of what Rove is trying to do here–certainly the idea that former senior aides have absolute immunity from showing up before Congress if not the notion of absolute immunity in general (to say nothing of former aides of former Presidents). Pushing the deadline out gives Obama several additional ways to respond here. They can respond through their filing on the suit, which is due on February 18. And, presumably before this deadline, Dawn Johnsen will also be installed at OLC with the option to pull Steven Bradbury’s opinion authorizing "absolute immunity" for former aides, which (after all) literally contradicts the logic Rehnquist used to justify absolute immunity in the first place.

Bush’s legal team keeps pretending there will be some point at which Obama is forced to negotiate with the Bush Administration on this. And that’s probably true for Miers’ testimony. But given the sketchiness surrounding Bush’s claim to privilege for Rove, that may not be true at all for Turdblossom.

    • bobschacht says:

      Wasn’t Rahmbo supposed to be Obama’s great guru in managing the House of Reps, and helping Obama with the bipartisan thing?

      So, how does that big goose egg look, Rahm? You couldn’t even shake one single vote out of the Republican caucus for the stimulus package?

      Jus’ wonderin’

      Bob in HI

      • lllphd says:

        bob, i actually think the goose egg is a gift. this actually makes the repugs look perfectly stupid. obama bends over backwards to listen, accommodate, compromise, concede. they praise him, then stab him in the back. willing to take down the country just to stand up to the prez. you think the american public doesn’t get that? they read it, loud and clear. the low polls for congress are heavily weighted against the repugs; dems are gaining respect. this little vignette just put the nails in their collective coffin because it gives the dems all the reason in the world to just ignore them now! why not? apparently no matter what the dems try to do to go at this in a bipartisan way, the repugs are going to pout and sulk and take their skates and go home. to hell with the economy and the american people. they want to get credit for being heroes, but are not at all interested in saving anybody. but themselves, of course. now this is patently obvious, can’t get around it.

        so the dems are now perfectly free to recraft the bill in the senate the way they originally intended, send it back to the house, and pass it anyway, without the obstructionist repugs. and the public will not blame them a bit.

        seems to me this was a masterful stroke of genius. one that likely required obama to hogtie and gag rahm to keep him from his normal bully tactics. perhaps when he sees how well it worked, he’ll grow out of his childish ways.

  1. scribe says:

    No surprise on this – the issues presented are rather thorny and will need kicking around through the various offices in the Admin before they go with a position.

    After all, the same precedent set here could be used against Obama or any other president in the future.

  2. emptywheel says:

    Actually, the central issue is not thorny at all. Should Presidents have available absolute immunity, which has only been used successfully once (Reagan’s EPA Administrator, and that, only bc they ran out the clock as they tried to do here)?

    There’s not much point for it, really, and Obama could easily eliminate it as an option for all presidents going forward.

    • LabDancer says:

      This is a good point, one I think is at risk of being lost in granting due consideration to the more serious point of where to draw lines to ensure some functional level of executive confidentiality, like what scribe alludes to @ 3. I get the impression that you might think Isikoff is serving – AOT – the tactic of blurring the distinction to Rove’s advantage [:)].

      Do you think this snuggles up pretty close to Secret Steve’s blogiwick, and makes you ask after his perspective in the larger scheme of things [plus there’s a world of other stuff he passes on that in the news now, particularly with NARA’s supposed receipt of the Dickwad Papers]? So I’m wondering if you might consider inviting him into a little cross-contaminating live-blog session? The guy gives such terrific testimony, he’s gotta be lots of fun in the blograck – whereas the format at Secret News appears more geared to engender understatement & thus his great posts rich with linked content tend to lose out in the blogroar.

  3. iremember54 says:

    This is all a joke anyhow. Even if they ever force Rove to testify he will either lie or claim the fifth. All of Bushes Buds will get off free and so will Mr. Bush. This country only holds ordinary citizens to uphold the law and do the right thing. So to even think or waste the time on this is useless. We gave the country away and now asking to get it back is like asking spilled milk to fly back into the carton.

    • LabDancer says:

      Well, I for one certainly don’t remember you, so I can’t tell if you’re someone we should alert freep to or if you think you have some serious purpose in expressing this. So you just want to give up, then? Fine; go ahead. I don’t agree, and I doubt most here do, and more importantly, I doubt folks like Conyers and Feingold do either.

  4. JohnLopresti says:

    There are links to both Miers and Rove lameduck letters from Fielding at Newsweek; JB appears to agree it is a stretch, seemingly absolute fiction, in the WHC formulation. The links provided are for a runtime which obligates the browser to visit the site, but the letters are entire, as far as I can discern. I imagine each missive included a 40pp blind appendix with the caselaw cites. Noting the authorship of the Newsweek article providing the links appears to be a clue that the deployment is an ack-ack tactic.

  5. Leen says:

    How many chances do these thugs get? Here’s the line…no here’s the line…no here’s the line. WTF. No one is above the law horse shit. When will these Dems make a stand?

      • randiego says:

        Heh, that means you turned 50 on 02/02/02! (I turned 40 that day).

        Woo Hoo! We share birthdays with such luminaries as Farrah Fawcett, Christie Brinkley, and my (and TBogg’s) personal fave, Shakira.

        Go Groundhogs!

        • siri says:

          ROGER THAT! heh heh

          i was truly REALLY lookin’ forward to Rove this year.

          Go Groundhogs, INDEED!

          we’ll be fine tho without the Rove circus. (or lack of)
          Groundhog party’s are ALWAYS just ROCKIN’, till we give up the shadow and cave.
          lol!
          i’ll be lookin’ for ya, randiego, here on the Lake on 2/2!

          i got the first round.
          k?

      • Leen says:

        Happy Birthday to all of the ground hog folks. I always forget is it when the ground hog sees or does not see its shadow.. what happens?

        Who came up with this one?

        • skdadl says:

          It is weirdly counterintuitive. If the groundhog sees his/her shadow (meaning it’s a sunny day), winter will go on for another six weeks. If not (meaning it’s a cloudy day), presumably winter will end sooner — maybe because the groundhog isn’t scared by his own shadow and stays outside or something?

          Even stranger, we play this game in Canada too. We have our Wiarton Willie to match your Punxsutawney Phil and others. But the whole thing is moot up here — no way winter is gone by mid-March anywhere in Canada except maybe Victoria.

  6. MadDog says:

    A couple of points.

    I would not be surprised that an at least “informal” review of the Turdblossom absolute immunity privilege letter was being conducted by the OLC-To-Be cast of Legal Eagles.

    Though Dawn Johnson and Marty Lederman have yet to undergo the Senate confirmation process, I would expect that the Obama White House Counsel Greg Craig to have at least solicited their opinions rather than just review the letter in house.

    Secondly, as was the case with Holder’s nomination, I would also expect the Repugs to make quite a fuss in both Dawn’s and Marty’s hearings to further attempt to intimidate the Obama DOJ from “looking back”.

  7. bobschacht says:

    I think Omerta will reign supreme over the Bush-Cheney syndicate until one of the capo de capi gets sent to prison. That’s one reason for running out the clock as long as they can. Remember how the rumors started going when it looked like Scooter Libby might actually see some jail time? Alfredo and KKKarl rank up there with enough riding on their coat tails to get noticed. I’m not quite so sure about Bolton, Miers and others, whose name is legion.

    If Rove does get turned on the spit (i.e, takes his turn in the witness chair, under oath), the squealing will commence, and the other members of the syndicate will be running for cover. The cover-up may not hold, as each co-conspirator tries to keep their bacon from being fried.

    My interest is that I want to see the Constitution-shredding crew gets so thoroughly held up to public shame and ridicule that their unConstitutional ideology gets thoroughly discredited. May they become the Benedict Arnolds of this generation of vipers. May their names be forever stained because of what they have done.

    However, I do not wish physical harm on any one of them.

    Bob in HI

  8. perris says:

    you know, this delay will result in another delay, Obama is being too cagey as is conyers.

    I cannot believe they are allowing this precedent, they WANT people to refuse subpoena, they have ceded their power and they simply do not want it back

  9. Quzi says:

    But given the sketchiness surrounding Bush’s claim to privilege for Rove, that may not be true at all for Turdblossom.

    I hope you are right, EW!

    I am still hoping that someone is held responsible for the death of the Justice department on Bushie’s reign…as much as I hate the government spying on the American people and torture – the desecration of the DOJ has made me livid.

  10. perris says:

    I remember how happy I was when the democrats won majorities in both houses

    but what did they do with that power?

    nothing that’s what, now we have the president as well and what is congress doing?

    they are allowing this depravity go on, rove and meirs simply must be thrown in jail

    • lllphd says:

      how quickly we forget.
      http://lawprofessors.typepad.c…..rst_1.html

      and we also seem to forget that, no matter what the dems might have wanted to do, or even passed, there was always bush who was more than willing to finally use his veto power.

      did you really expect him and the dick to just roll over and say ‘otay bu’wheat’ and sign laws that would toast their own asses??? get a grip.

      you think these people suddenly have magic wands they can wave and make it all better?? what planet are you living on, anyway? this is not a rotating tyranny, dude; this is a democracy. and like it or not, there are other opinions besides ours. even if they’re illegal and criminal, they have to be contended with, not thrown in jail because we just know we’re right and have all the facts, etc.

      i mean, isn’t that what we’ve been so disgusted with bush about?

      • perris says:

        how quickly we forget.
        http://lawprofessors.typepad.c…..rst_1.html

        you’re not serious are you lllphd?

        that was the first 100 hours and while amazing for a hundred hours worth of work it amounts to nothing for the compiled work since they’ve been in power

        did you really expect him and the dick to just roll over and say ‘otay bu’wheat’ and sign laws that would toast their own asses??? get a grip.

        excuse me, they lost their seats in power BECAUSE they obstructed congress and as I said time and again, the democrats NEEDED to deal with the republicans, they needed to offer uncontested seats, they needed to offer pork they needed to do whatever it might take to get this president out of office

        and YES, they would have dealt, they KNEW they would lose more seats but they had no where to do, they had a losing plan and they knew it but that was the only plan they had, the democrats should have offered them a winning plan

        but no, the democrats wanted to guarantee more seats so they did not deal

        let me remind you, it was the REPUBLICANS that walked into nixon’s office to tell him he would be impeached, it was the democrats that persuaded them to do just that

        this time the democrats didn’t even try

        you think these people suddenly have magic wands they can wave and make it all better??

        I really don’t know what you’re talking about

        of COURSE I thought they could wave their “magic wand”, the wand of impeachment, they NEEDED to wave that wand, instead they took that wand and buried it

        and what did bush do as soon as pelosi “took impeachment off the table”?

        he became MORE brazen that’s what he did, once exposed the depravity could get even more aggresive and that’s exactly what he did, since he couldn’t hide anymore his crimes he actually bragged about them

        and still, NOTHING from the democrats

        there are other opinions besides ours

        actually, it was OUR opinions that got them into power, WE voted for them so they would get us out of Iraq, so they would STOP the president, THAT’S why we gained republican seats even after precincts were redistriced to make it impossible for republicans to lose, YET THEY LOST, becuase the “opinions besides ours” were FEW and too few to consider when we are talking about the damage done to this country

        I know you want to defend this congress, I suspect it is becuase they are all we have but this is NOT the congress we elected, the congress we elected were given their seat in power to STOP THE BLEEDING

        they did not even try

        • Stephen says:

          Truly that was the big mistake by Pelosi. Declaring right after the elections that impeachment was off the table. Yes the numbers didn,t add up for the take down but the declaration did not have to be made. As you point out correctly Bush became more brazen. Why did she do it? Hearings could have been conducted with a lot more pressure. Mind you with the wiretapping- blackmail issue out there it could also account for all or some of the brazen misconduct and unconscionable ineptitude.

          • Hmmm says:

            Hey Nancy: The numbers add up now. Pile onto the Blago thing and impeach Dick & W now. And by the doing, tell the whole world that those guys are fair game now.

            • Leen says:

              Soon to have the numbers. I guess they just don’t give a damn that only 10% of the American people have any faith in them. The one thing I could agree with Bush on was that Americans had less faith in congress than they did in Bush and Cheney.

          • lllphd says:

            i disagree. had pelosi been cagey or gone full steam ahead, bush and crew would have been cautious and careful. as it was, he was brazen and bold and cocky as all hell. folks tend to make big mistakes when they’re that cocky.

            you are right, tho; the numbers did not add up for the take down, which i’m sure was part of the calculus. but i also think they decided to give the guy enough rope to hang himself. and hope the tide would turn. he did, and it did.

            congress will act on this; they already are. give it a bit. there are so damn many ways the bushies could be taken down, no need to clamor for all of them all at once. there is a best way to do things. takes time. and patience.

          • perris says:

            Truly that was the big mistake by Pelosi. Declaring right after the elections that impeachment was off the table.Yes the numbers didn,t add up

            your point that she shouldn’t have gone public with impeachment off the table is correct however I take issue with what I made bold

            the numbers were clearly there, it was obvious the more exposed bush became the more everyone wanted him out of office, it is brutally obvious since that’s the reason republicans lost seats

            there is something known as implied odds and if you don’t consider the implied odds then you are not looking at the numbers

            democrats gained votes the more bush was exposed, this implied more exposure would clearly gain them more votes

            but the most important thing, even if an impeachment did not yeild conviction, the actions of the president would go on the record for public consumption

            here’s an example;

            when bush found out his torture programs would go public he began to brag about them as his defense

            that strategy, bragging about your depravity worked because tehy let a little out at a time, if instead it is exposed becaues of trial the bragging strategy would be to his doom not to his asset

            the numbers to impeach were there, implied odds demonstrate this clearly

        • lllphd says:

          sheez; hard to know where to begin with all the ranting.

          first of all, i was first in line complaining about the lack of impeachment will in congress, but after a while i began to see that it really might not be such a great idea. considering how close the numbers were in the senate (why impeach if you can’t convict? he’d just stay in office and we’d all be made to look like idiots), how unfriendly the media are, how stacked the whole damn deck is, the utterly emasculated doj, the supremes (roberts would have presided; can you imagine how he would have ruled? c’mon), i could go on and on.

          at least they would have tried, you would say (since you claim the dems have not even tried). well, what was the goal? impeachment to say they tried? or conviction toward correcting the ship of state? i’d say the latter, and that the former had the deck stacked against it (see previous graf).

          nixon was very different. republicans in congress had not held and abused power for 15 years the way this crew had; they became drunk with power and corruption. remember? jeffords may have been the last responsible republican to serve in congress, and he left the party because bush was such a whacko. with watergate, dems had held congress for a while, and republicans then could claim at least some men of integrity. the parties had worked well together, and nixon had even signed off on many dem bills, the epa not least among them. the reason the repugs approached nixon was they knew he was guilty; the tapes proved it. and goldwater insisted that he not take the party down any further. they had foresight, unlike these idiots. they were not complicit like this entire party is. and the dems started impeachment proceedings only after the wapo stories made it unequivocally clear what was going on; it wasn’t like the dems were on this like stink on dog poop. they waited until the press laid out the case for them; surely you noticed that our current media find the notion of impeachment laughable, thanks to the repug fiasco with monica. watergate was a fascinating era, and certainly showed more cahunas in both parties than we see now, but it wasn’t like dems were fighting against any wind. it was completely behind their backs.

          which is totally different from what these guys now have faced. totally different. the wind has been forcefully in their faces. a far more dangerous time. these thugs play for keeps, and they play really really dirty. how can you make the watergate comparison when even john dean said these guys made nixon look like a boy scout? it’s so damn true! i lived through that time. i watched all those assassinations (in memphis when king was shot) and the church bombings and the riots and kent state and the hatred for civil rights and anti-war protesters and hippies and all of it. and i have to tell you, as bad as all that was, i was far far far – by a lightning long shot – far more scared of these freaks than i ever was of nixon and his ilk. there were many times over the past 8 years when i really feared we would lose the country, they’d declare martial law, and shove us all into camps. don’t you remember those fears? do you not even notice that they’re gone?? and did that not begin at least a little when the dems recovered congress two years ago? is that not powerful for you?

          and yes, despite the fact that i have been frequently frustrated with the dems in congress, i will defend their attempts to stand up to this monster that the republican machinery has become, the monster that is now destroying itself like a scorpion.

          how can you say they have done NOTHING?? what about conyers? and waxman? and leahy and whitehouse and feingold? and barbara boxer? she stood up for congresswoman tubb-jones (god rest her good soul; hate she missed seeing obama win) in questioning the OH presidential election numbers. i mean really dude; it’s not as if these people were just sucking their thumbs. granted, in a perfect world, they’d have stood up like the cavalry and charged the enemy. but this was not a B grade cowboy movie (go rent reagan for that thrill, buddy), this was way too surreal/real. these jokers had the entire country hiked up by the beltloops with 9/11 petrification, the media piling on like hiway rubberneckers. the mood of this country was extremely different than it was 35 years ago, and so were the particulars. you can’t even draw reasonable comparisons, it was so different. parallel, but orders of magnitude different in intensity and scope.

          and speaking of reasonable, forgive me, but that whole section about seats and power and pork, you’ve got too many pronouns in there without clear antecedents. you lost me. were you saying the dems should have offered the repugs pork to tell bush he should resign? to get them on board for impeachment? were you not paying attention to that crew?? they were more in lock step than the nazis. rove and cheney kept them all in line, with indefatigable support from delay and lott. which is a huge part of why those guys are in so much trouble now (not ok to mix the politics with governance like that); they were all branded and complicit. and they were NEVER interested in governing, they were ONLY interested in maintaining power. period. they’d have laughed in pelosi’s face if she’d approached them about impeachment, even with all the evidence that’s out there. they’d have laughed, and thumbed their noses, just like they’re doing now. but now, increasingly, they look like the asses they are.

          i suspect pelosi knew this about them. in fact, i’m quite sure of it. and it just might be that the leadership made a calculated decision to give bush all the rope he needed to hang his sorry self. you’re right, he got all cocky. when idiots like him get cocky, they also get careless. that calculus makes sense to me now. better to let the tide turn on bush because he is so adept at bringing it on, idiot that he is. and they had to believe the tide would turn. hell, they could only hope – HOPE – it would. and it has. still is. it is still unfolding, this change.

          maybe you’re just too cynical to see it, but there is such a remarkable shift, and so much is changing already. but there is such a thing as shifting direction too quickly. i sense that obama is keenly aware of this. it is pure wisdom. if you want change that is deep and holds and lasts and that destroys only the disease and not the patient as well, you have to move with great care and finesse.

          forgive me, perris, but this IS the congress we elected. deal with it. and it ain’t so dreadful as you think. try being grateful for the good that is there. keep their feets to the fires, but recognize their efforts toward correcting an enormous mess. try avoiding so many negative hyperboles and remind yourself of the completely different direction we’ve taken. bush gets in office, and there are immediate tax cuts for the rich and religious fanatics get orgasms without condoms, while cheney locks in secret profits for oil. it only went downhill from there; hell, we were attacked on their watch!! if you can’t see the remarkable differences now, in this congress, in obama, then all i can say is you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.

          • perris says:

            just like you lllphd I don’t know where to start, too much to pick through so I’ll take what I believe the heart of your post and respond;

            at least they would have tried, you would say (since you claim the dems have not even tried). well, what was the goal? impeachment to say they tried? or conviction toward correcting the ship of state? i’d say the latter, and that the former had the deck stacked against it (see previous graf).

            knowledge lllphd is innoculation, the more he was exposed the more he lost his voters, the more the voters saw what he was about the more they wanted him out of office

            a trial of impeachment would have exposed his crimes, the republican constituents would have gone balistic and demanded bush removed from office

            and just like nixon, when the republicans saw what was going to be exposed they would have insisted he not bring them down further

            lllphd you are taking the events as they happened, declining bush popularity, lost elections and republicans trying to stay in power and converting that to mean more of that would not have accomplished more of what the little exposure was accomplishing

            common snnse tells us what was working would work more if we did it more, the fact that it started to work was not a good reason to stop right there and let the wheels spin, we needed to derail the damage

            how can you say they have done NOTHING?? what about conyers? and waxman? and leahy and whitehouse and feingold? and barbara boxer? she stood up for congresswoman tubb-jones (god rest her good soul; hate she missed seeing obama win) in questioning the OH presidential election numbers. i mean really dude; it’s not as if these people were just sucking their thumbs

            you argue my point for me lllphd, each and every one of them became MORE powerful, MORE popular and won MORE republicans to their side when they exposed bush

            yet congress then did nothing with that exposure, even though the evidence was clear, if they went further exposing the depravity the depravity would have stopped

            now each of our arguments are pretty much based around your quotes there and my responses to them and we are arguing in circles

            congress did nothing with the information they exposed, nobody was brought to trial, nobody was thrown in jail, and the crimes became more brazen

            so their strategy worked a little bit with the little bit they did, we gained more democrats, but it is beyond me how that evidence tells you we would have gotten fewer democrats if we exposed them even more.

            so we go in circles lllphd, you look to what we began to do and argue that was all we could do, I look to what we began to do and argue it was working and there was so much more to go with then we did

            you can have the last word and I guess we’ll not convince each other

            • lllphd says:

              you are right about one thing, perris; we are going in circles.

              but you are not right that going gangbusters would have been a safe thing to do. the time has not been right. the whole zeitgeist has not been right. you talk as if the election system is not rigged to high heavens. you talk as though the polls were showing enormous leads for obama and all the dems. it was tenuous, fragile, delicate. and that had everything to do with the media and the monstrous machinery that was in place. these things did NOT exist with such power with nixon.

              and if you think the dems could have approached the repugs with all the evidence against bush and convinced them to impeach bush, all i can say is you are truly nuts. certifiable. i mean, look at those people!! they’re even nuttier than you for seeing the very same evidence you and i do, and likely more, and they have been adamantly protecting and defending him all along. until now, when he’s gone and they’re scrambling for their very existence. and the reason is they were deeply complicit. they not only went along, they propped the whole thing up. they knew all along what they were doing was wrong, illegal, unconstitutional, and yet they forged ahead, believing rove’s agenda of a permanent republican majority.

              none of that existed in any way shape or form with nixon. he was a paranoid man (altho there is evidence the cia wanted him out, and there is that piece; but it doesn’t support your argument) who didn’t even trust his own party members. bush and his crew grew a mafia in our midst, and all those guys were willing and eager members. agreeing to impeach him would have been like impeaching themselves, and they knew it.

              they still know it. and look where they are. look at who they elected to lead him. look at their nominee and his veep, for chrissake! and the campaign! sheez. they’re a mess, a complete mess. but the country was unable to get a picture of just how bad off they are until the contrast of obama could take hold. and that happened extremely quickly. it’s been pretty breathtaking, actually. the differences are startling, but folks are so unable to see those things until they’re slapped in the face with it.

              that would include you, my friend. forgive my bluntness, you sound a bit like a princess at the beginning of recovery from the plague. all she can do is complain about all the bodies, missing the point that their numbers are rapidly decreasing.

              and speaking of numbers, you are just dead wrong on that point. the numbers were NOT there. not in congress, and not in the public. it’s only this week that polls show support for investigation of questionable activities, but there is still not that much strong support for prosecutions. you mistake your fervor, and that of your comrades, for the entire public’s. obama won, as did his fellow dems, because people are just fed up and they’re really pissed at the economy. issues of illegality were not anywhere near the top of the list of reasons for voting dems in. not for the majority of voters.

              you also strike me as likely quite young. you don’t seem to have lived through the times you were so eager to compare these with. i’ll say it again, though parallel, they are wildly different. that’s easy to forgive, and hopefully with time you’ll learn the importance of forgiving our brethren for their humanity. it’s utterly key to healing. that’s not to say we let these suckers go scott free, but we can’t hang the entire democratic party because you’re offended. wouldn’t that sound a bit more like a dictatorship than a democracy to you?

              and i’ll say this again, while i appreciate your principled stand, please be careful of where that passion can take you. passion over reason carries us away, no matter what the principles might be, no matter how ‘right’ they might be. without the measure of reason to guide us through such fragile times, we’re doomed to the same fate that awaits the repugs and their fundamentalist fanatics. and it ain’t pretty.

  11. freepatriot says:

    off topic, but funny as hell

    well, the repuglitards found the leader to bring change to the repuglitard party

    I guess all the repuglitard candidates are gonna be claiming to be Democrats from now on

    that’s steele’s idea of change, ain’t it

    claim to be a Democrat and hope the voters are too stupid to notice

    • lllphd says:

      honey, they’ve been doing that since reagan’s southern strategy!

      the repugs have known for decades that they can’t win on their platform, that the american people basically want what the dems offer, so they’ve stolen the play book and grafted in orwell’s tongue, along with a whole slew of manipulations secondary to convincing folks their worst nightmares are really in their best interests, and voila! the modern repug party.

      which is why they won’t survive. like the narcissist who invests all psychic energy in the outer image become nothing more than an empty shell, the repugs are a hollow haint, less than nothing.

      sad, really, when you remember their founder was lincoln.

      • freepatriot says:

        honey, they’ve been doing that since reagan’s southern strategy!

        yeah, but didn’t they try to hide it, back in the day ???

        this is the best the repuglitards could come up with ???

        forget the NAZI stuff

        this putz ordered signs that said “steele Democrat”

        and here’s an off-topic nugget;

        who knew the BoyScouts are an Eco-disaster

        curiouser and curiouser

        teh gays fucked up the catholic church AND the Boy Scouts

        fookin irony

        I know, I know, equating homosexuality with pedophilia is wrong, but what ya gonna do, the joke don’t work without it

        I’ll be here till sunday (I didn’t pay the rent so I got no place to go)

        (wink)

        • lllphd says:

          well, if you call announcing your presidency in philadelphia, ms, on a platform of “states’ rights” as code for legalized racism, then i suppose you can say they ‘hid’ it.

          i agree, tho; this band of hooligans is pretty damn ballsy. i mean, in your face rewrite the constitution/day is night ballsy.

          messes with yer haid.

  12. siri says:

    CHIT!
    2/2 is my birthday. I’d planned a whole day of revelry around this.
    j/k

    it does kinda suck since no one in my circle can afford bd presents this year.

    Damn!

  13. 1boringoldman says:

    It seems that Rove, as is his style, has everyone dancing around the wrong issue. If Rove was involved in either the US Attorney ‘matter or the AL Governor prosecution, he committed a crime. Yet they’re playing it for a Presidential/Separation of Powers question between the Executive Branch and the Legislative Branch. The reason Congress is involved is that the DoJ under Bush was dysfunctional, working for the Executive Branch and Congress ’stepped in’ to make up for the DoJ. None of these opinions are about what to do when the DoJ has been rendered inoperative.

    The center of the cases is about the Executive taking over the Justice System which is technically in or under the Executive. That is a structural problem – a crack in our system. How does one investigate crime if the crime is committed by the White House? In some ways, the Nixon Tapes existence allowed us to ‘get around’ the central question [tapes aren’t people].

    The opinions are valid in-so-far as they say Congress shouldn’t be able to interfere with the Executive. What’s wrong is that we also hold that the Executive shouldn’t be able to commit or hide criminal activity. Getting Rove to testify in Congress isn’t the point. What Obama thinks isn’t the point either – Administrations shouldn’t hassle each other.

    I say charge Rove with having committed a crime and let a Grand Jury decide. But as for the structural problem, how about arguing that because the Executive can influence its own DoJ, there should be no Statute of Limitation on crimes committed by the White House [justified by the ‘undo influence’ of the Executive on its own DoJ].

    Whatever the solution to the structural problem, the guiding principle is that we are disavowing Nixon’s, “If the President does it [or his advisors], it’s not a crime.”

    • lllphd says:

      i hear your principled issues, but it’s not so simple as charging rove with a crime. one must have evidence. part of the push to get rove to testify is that he has said so much so far in so many venues, including the fitz grand jury, but that was the only one where the questions were not friendly. there has been so much involved in covering up these crimes, that actually getting to those in particular may never be possible. but perjury and obstruction are. you have to get the guy under oath to do that.

      shades of scooter. it may be all we can get in the end, and this would be the only way to do it. unless there miraculously appears the smoking gun, like those nixon tapes (analogous here to the cleverly vanishing emails).

  14. freepatriot says:

    for the record:

    absolute immunity equals a Presidential Pardon

    george didn’t do that

    Game, Set, Match

    presnit bunny pants fucked up on this one …

    • BayStateLibrul says:

      Do we know for sure that Bushie didn’t pardon his cabal…
      If he believes in absolute Presidential power, he could have issued them
      in secret, no?
      The pardon power doesn’t say he has to go public or does it?

      • freepatriot says:

        the claims of absolute immunity are bullshit

        if kkkarl had a pardon, he would only have to fear contempt charges

        kkkarl has criminal culpability to worry about

        this isn’t about some moot issues

        Seigalman is still an active prosecution

        if rover had a pardon, he could wiggle out of a prosecution

        instead, his phony immunity claim is gonna be tossed, his EP claims have never been made, and ain’t gonna help him now (especially in Seigalman, where they don’t apply)

        only a pardon could have elevated kkkarl out of this hole

        nothing can save him now

        • lllphd says:

          um, still not sure i follow.

          i could be wrong, but my take of what ew is saying is that this new fielding letter does in fact introduce EP. that is my read of the letter as well (http://www.newsweek.com/id/182224 – last full graf, third full line from bottom). however you wanna parse “consistent with” EP, i think that’s what it’s saying.

          still, he’ll likely be compelled to appear and testify, then will take the 5th (which a pardon would not allow), and we won’t know much more than we do now. however, pleading the 5th will be a bit touchy since he’s been mr. blubberblabbermouth on all those fox shows, doncha know.

          i believe they call this that place between a rock and a hard place.

  15. plunger says:

    Effectively, Rove was acting in an Agency capacity on behalf of the President. The President is governed by rules that preclude the politicization of the White House, its resources, his staff or agents to achieve purely political ends. Rove’s position was political, and when he acted, he acted under the apparent authority of the chief executive. Problem is the Chief Executive had no authority to task his agent with a political mission that involved the termination of justice department employees.

    One simple charge of Conspiracy against Rove would suffice to turn him against the President (his Principal). He broke the law. The guy used secret or personal information against individuals for political purposes. It’s fucking illegal. Period. There is no executive privilege or any other kind of privilege that affords administration officials the option to blackmail justice department officials or otherwise cause them to lose their jobs over clearly political matters.

    Not even in time of war does the President have the authority to undertake political activities from within the White House – and therefore his agent was knowingly acting without lawful authority (as he clearly knew the laws he was violating).

  16. plunger says:

    The question was asked: Why aren’t “they” letting people withdraw their money from their 401Ks without need to pay the penalty in this time of economic strife?

    THEY are the banksters – who employed Greenspan to intentionally CAUSE this orchestrated global depression. The reason “they’re” not waiving the 10% penalty for early withdrawal of YOUR OWN FUCKING MONEY from the markets is they know damn well that THE MONEY’S NOT THERE!

    They fucking stole it! The only thing keeping the “illusion of a market” intact is the talkers on CNBS and total government intervention.

    The “President’s Working Group” under the guise of “market stabilization” has been spending tax payer money on common shares of stock every single day in order to facilitate the exit of their bankster co-conspirators while affording the appearance that real counterparties are in their acquiring these shares. All the traders used to call it “the invisible hand,” but the moves are so blatant now they’ve taken to simply calling it “the VISIBLE hand.”

    They’ve been doing this for the past three-plus years. It’s the cause of virtually EVERY short squeeze and all of the wild gyrations that caused the volatility index (VIX) to fly off the charts. So guess who will wind up owning all the plummeting common stock of US companies? We the bagholders!

    When the entire thing finally freezes up and they close it down and reveal the truth about who was left holding all these shares of worthless US companies once the music stopped – the answer is YOU!

    If you want your money back, start by arresting David Rockefeller (JP Morgan Chase & Exxon Mobil) and his treasonous co-conspirators.

  17. plunger says:

    Paul Blumenthal blogged about Senator Ensign’s hold on S. 223, the Senate Campaign Finance Disclosure Parity Act, earlier in the week. We have reason to wonder whether the hold was Ensign’s doing all along. Similarly, Senator Jim Bunning now has an objection to moving forward with HR 1255, the Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2007. The bill would overturn an outrageous Executive Order that would keep presidential records hidden from public view indefinitely.

    The EO turns on its head the purpose and principles of the Presidential Records Act, which was enacted in 1978 to ensure that presidential records are the property of the federal government. In a nutshell, the PRA says that once the president leaves office, the National Archives has control of his papers. Many papers, including those that contain national security information and information about confidential communications between the president and his advisors, must be kept secret for 12 years after the president’s last day in office. After that, the records are supposed to become available under FOIA standards, with an exception for classified information.

    President Bush has used his executive order to ensure that the records of his most secretive administration remain hidden indefinitely. Now, all a president has to do is claim a record is privileged and anyone seeking these presidential records has to prove it is not–even if the president’s claim is completely unfounded. A reporter, historian, professor or anyone else trying to learn about a prior administration would also have to prove there is a “demonstrated, specific need” for the documents. But, in case those massive obstacles to transparency weren’t enough, the president’s EO grants control of the documents to the president’s heirs. Years from now, Jenna Bush could claim executive privilege!

    The Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2007 would lift this shroud of secrecy from presidential records. The bill, which was introduced by Congressman Henry Waxman passed the House by a vote of 333 to 93. Under Senator Lieberman’s sponsorship, it sailed through the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs but then came to a dead stop. Why? Because a Senator or Senators put a secret hold on a bill. Now, whether or not he has had the hold all along, Senator Bunning has been forced to take responsibility for the objection. That makes us happy. But until our elected officials in Congress and the White House feel shamed by the efforts they take to keep secrets, we have a lot more work to do.

    http://blog.sunlightfoundation…..-the-dark/

  18. JohnJ says:

    Super discussion!! This is why I come here.

    Here’s some irony…thanks to the fall of the economy I lost my higher paying job; thanks to the wars they started I have enough OT to live.

    Gotta go make some time and a half.

  19. freepatriot says:

    between a rock and a hard place.

    it gets worse for rover

    I read EW as saying fielding is going the “absolute immunity” route (it’s the only way he can save himself on the siegalman stuff. EP don’t cover interfering with active prosecutions at the DOJ)

    and when the absolute immunity fails, and kkkarl takes the 5th under the klieg lights, he gets frogmarched in front of a Grand Jury

    there ain’t anything that can save him there

    delaying rover’s testimony is actually a GOOD thing

    there is a resentment and outright ANGER building against the repuglitard party right now

    wait till Al Franken gets his senate seat, and Eric Holder get his hands on bushco’s dirty little secrets

    the wave is building

    and America shall be washed clean

    the republican party is a cancer on America

    • Hmmm says:

      I just read a comment on The Great Orange Satan to the effect that the R party is the political arm of the American ruling class. Seeing as how their policies always work against the interests of working people, that’s difficult to argue against. The trick for us now is to make that fact clear for the people who got duped into voting for them, against their own economic self-interest I might add, so that in 2010 their party numbers in the House and Senate dwindle to a level at which they can no longer thwart the peoples’ business. I suggest PBO start by rolling out Ross-Perot-style graphs illustrating the abysmal performance of the US economy during R administrations over the past 40 years — it’s not subtle, and should serve to ’splain to everyone why we should not not not be listening to Rush and the Rs at large as we design the EcStim.

      • freepatriot says:

        Obama is playing chess

        and the repuglitards are drooling on themselves and chewing on checkers

        I think 110 million voters got their own ideas about lush limpballs

        the repuglitatrds are in a suicide spiral (hat tip to Nate Silver)

        toss them some more anchors …

        • Hmmm says:

          It’s true, The Sweetie and have been saying to each other, every time a Boehner or a McConnell starts talking policy, “They got nuthin’.” I still think we gotta connect to their electoral base with that message, they might actually be educable about this.

    • lllphd says:

      i agree the repugs are a cancer, but you seem to be loosely stringing the facts together. i suggest you read fielding’s letter itself (linked above) and find that reference to EP i note, also above. though fielding’s not used EP before, he does in this recent letter. though the immunity is stressed more.

      the more dangerous aspect of EP for bush is that, by rove’s invoking it, it more than suggests bush was privy to the decisions about siegelman and the US atty firings. that is the most logical reason fielding avoided it previously. and why it’s so dangerous for all of them now, fielding included.

      like you, i’m hoping this will be one of the first steps toward a reformation in this country, right down to exposing the reupugs as a ‘ruling class’ party. but i think you’re really flying way to high to even hope we’ll be “washed clean.” this is a nation of humans, after all. and last time i checked, there are still way too many pockets of white supremacists and greedy corporate maggots slithering around.

      may i humbly suggest you check your rhetoric for its zeal and fervor? with very few changes in words (libruhls for repugs, just one example) you sound way too much like the fanatics we’ve been trying to overcome for so long now. we all must be very careful we don’t become the enemy; that’s what happens when our passions for hatred take us over. no matter which side of the aisle we’re on.

      • bmaz says:

        You seem to assert as a matter of fact that Executive Privilege has been officially asserted by way of the January 16 letter to Luskin. In the first place, although the EP words are tossed in, I am not sure that such actually constitutes an assertion of EP; secondly I sure as hell am not sure that it is an effective and proper assertion if it is an assertion at all. I’ll be honest, I am of the take that this letter is a total pike of crap, and really does not even attempt to properly assert EP, but, instead, is a half assed attempt to throw enough doubt into the process to allow litigation and delay.

  20. Hmmm says:

    BTW I’m a little worried about the sudden surge of daylight the Rs are putting between PBO and themselves, i.e. the 0 votes for EcStim, McCain stiffing the Super Bowl invitation, Michael Steele’s hard-ass rhetoric, heck, even this PW post, etc. And there was some hint the other day that something damaging about PBO was about to come out. Anyone else’s Spidey Sense all a-tingle?

  21. 4jkb4ia says:

    plunger was working on a good comment but spoiled it all by saying that legal trouble would cause Rove to spill the beans. Rove isn’t Gonzalez. Bush is Rove’s political career and Rove’s political success. If Rove betrays Bush he may stay out of jail but he will have no legacy or accomplishments for the things he believes in. And it may be even less likely for another candidate ever to hire him.

  22. 4jkb4ia says:

    (When Nicholas Lemann profiled Rove for the New Yorker back in 2004, Rove said that he had admired Bush back when he was in the Texas Air National Guard, simply for charisma and being a natural politician. It would be hard to betray someone you have known for that long)

    • lllphd says:

      on your previous comment, i cannot imagine rove spilling beans. butter would not melt in this guys mouth; he will never sweat. i somehow think he’d rather go down as a martyr for bush than turn.

      on that note, wrt your second comment, i read that profile too, and i was even more struck by the language rove used to describe bush; it was faint and throbbing and went something like “he got off that plane in a flight jacket and jeans with a can of chew in his back pocket, throwing around more charisma than any man has a right to.”

      pure man-crush stuff. it’s not that he’s simply ‘known’ bush for ‘that long;’ he’s been deeply enraptured by him. though i suspect as his perfect mate for achieving their common goal of supremacy.