Skip to comments.Broader Privilege Claimed In Firings
Posted on 07/20/2007 8:52:39 AM PDT by gondramB
Bush administration officials unveiled a bold new assertion of executive authority yesterday in the dispute over the firing of nine U.S. attorneys, saying that the Justice Department will never be allowed to pursue contempt charges initiated by Congress against White House officials once the president has invoked executive privilege.
The position presents serious legal and political obstacles for congressional Democrats, who have begun laying the groundwork for contempt proceedings against current and former White House officials in order to pry loose information about the dismissals.
Under federal law, a statutory contempt citation by the House or Senate must be submitted to the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, "whose duty it shall be to bring the matter before the grand jury for its action."
But administration officials argued yesterday that Congress has no power to force a U.S. attorney to pursue contempt charges in cases, such as the prosecutor firings, in which the president has declared that testimony or documents are protected from release by executive privilege. Officials pointed to a Justice Department legal opinion during the Reagan administration, which made the same argument in a case that was never resolved by the courts.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Even though conviction seems impossible it will not be good for the country.
Hopefully the Press has this wrong of the President will back off. The President can fire all the attorneys he wants - that's (unfortunately a political position. Tell the Justice Department they cannot pursue charges against the White House would be viewed as political interference in an investigation of which he is a target - that sounds a whole lot like obstruction of justice.
Hopefully the story is wrong.
I guess they don’t understand ‘at the pleasure of the President’.
It’ll be interesting to hear Mark Levin’s opinion on this tonight...
Yep, if the Justice Department can’t do it, then all that’s left is an endless stream of “Special Prosecutors” - and that is certainly a failed experiment.
Let them bring on Impeachment. If the American people punished the Republicans for bringing on Impeachment of Clinton during a time of false, then let’s see how the America people react toward Congress if they go for impeachment during a time of dire war.
The president can definitely fire the attorneys, it’s certainly his pleasure, — but when their terms are up for renewal, NOT in the middle of their terms.
That is the big difference here.
It concluded: The President, through a United States Attorney, need not, indeed may not, prosecute criminally a subordinate for asserting on his behalf a claim of executive privilege. Nor could the Legislative Branch or the courts require or implement the prosecution of such an individual.
You are being hysterical. The President has claimed executive privilege in this case. If the congress disagrees that executive privilege applies then they can take that to the courts. What would the point of a privilege be if the congress could still compel testimony or documents claimed under the privilege?
This is a fishing expedition by congress. Its politically motivated and nothing illegal has been done. So, its not obstruction of justice.
If they had evidence that an illegal act occurred then I might be inclined to see your point of view.
Please show us your source for this law.
US attorneys serve at the pleasure of the President. Period.
That I didn’t know. Thanks for pointing it out.
No, they are at will employees, who can be fired for any reason, including no reason at all, at any time.
This is purely a matter within the powers of the President and not subject to congressional interference.
Congress has absolutely no authority to go on a hunting expedition amongst the Ex. Branch papers with NO hint of wrong doing.
Where did you get this? That is totally wrong.
B*llSh!t gondram! The President must protect the U.S. Constitution and the Executive Office. The U.S. Congress can not compel the Office of the President which includes the advisers! It is the Democrat Congress that is usurping power it does not legitimately hold.
What a load of crap. Please cite the law.
This story is pure spin.
Congress is trying to weaking the presidential power to just a “policeman at the pleasure of congress”.
They want to push a parlamentary system of governance where the house speaker, SELECTED by politicians rather than LEGAL VOTERS, is the head of the USA.