Constant's pations

If it's more than 30 minutes old, it's not news. It's a blog.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

White House Counsel Reviewing Sampson, Berenson

The White House internal e-mail, computer access, and personnel entry and exit times today will confirm something very unusual.

There is an ongoing interest between the White House counsel's office, DOJ Staff, and Sidley Austin. Berenson, in issuing his press release, has compounded the White House counsel's office problem and has generated some discussion within the White House Counsel's office. [ Details ]

Using methods which the NSA cannot detect or intercept, we can confirm, Brad Berenson's name was mentioned as was Sampson; and their names are part of and contained in these White House communications.

Despite claims that the White House was not involved with the US Attorney firings, the internal e-mail from today will show there were a series of messages, conversations, and reviews done on Sampson, the US Attorney Firings, and Outside Counsel Sidley Austin.

These issues have been disclosed outside the White House, are known to personnel who are not required to keep silent about these communications, and the White House and outside counsel may not claim that they are unrelated.

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Once these discussions are disclosed, the White House may not claim these issues are privileged.

It is known the White House is concerned about the US Attorney firings, have discussed Sampson, and are aware of Sampson's association with Sidley Austin.

Questions for Congress:

____ What's the plan of the House shut down funding for all AG-direct appointments, which illegally circumvent the Senate confirmation process?

____ Why is the Patriot Act being referred to as if it trumps the US Constitution on the required Senate involvement in the US Attorney confirmations?

____ Why is the White House claiming that this is a "trivial" matter, but their legal counsel are in the office on a Saturday?

____ If there is "no big deal" with this issue, why are legal counsel on a Saturday, discussing an issue which they claim was not a concern?

____ What is the White house plan to claim this is "privileged" when it has been disclosed to outside parties that there were e-mail communications near noon today related to this subject?

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The White House knows fully well Berenson's link with the White House counsel's office is a problem. By issuing an absurd legal statement, Berenson and Elston have jointly showed they're attempting to avoid the key issues.

The White House claims that it is not interested in this issue, and that the Attorney General has their full support. If this was true, then there would be no reason for the white house to follow-up on Sampson's relationship with Sidley Austin; nor spend any time on a Saturday discussing, reviewing, or analyzing the US Attorney developments, especially with someone who supposedly took responsibility.

The White House accepts that the resignation is insufficient, and there are additional legal problems associated with Sampson's association with Berenson.

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Revisiting The US Attorney Firings

IN light of the above stunning development -- shocked, shocked -- we might reconsider the other lines of communication suggesting the Congress has not been provided with all information.

____ Why should we believe the President is fit to remain in office when, despite the "big scary story of terrorism," the President refuses to provide supervision to Gonzalez to maintain focus on terror related issues? Ref

____ Why would DoJ Staff perceive they would have Whitt House support to make threats against US Attorneys using false information that was recklessly without regard to the facts? Ref

____ Which White House and DOJ Staff counsel have not reported their evidence of illegal activity to DOJ OPR as required; and how might this play into a broader review of alleged DoJ Staff counsel recklessness across all divisions of DOJ? Ref

____ Why is the White House claiming it is not interested in an issue; but its internal communications disprove this denial: What are they trying to hide; what issues do they pretend nobody knows about; and how is this pattern of conduct of relevance to a war crimes prosecution? Ref

____ Recusal: Given Berenson's absurd statements which appear no better than Elston's letter, how might we shed light on the motivation of Berenson to couch the legal issues, and distract attention from NSA violations, war crimes, and illegal prisoner abuse allegedly implicating AT&T with war crimes support? Ref

____ How adequately staffed is the Congressional staff counsel, in light of the botched Foley investigation, to review the legal issues with DoJ and White House counsel? Ref

____ What letters has the White House, DoJ, and DoD Staff counsel provided to Members of Congress that should have triggered a Title 28 and Title 50 exception report by the President and Attorney General: Which illegal activity related to the Plame security breach did the White House, in not investigating, choose to violate; and why was this refusal to enforce the law not reported as required in writing to the Congress per Title 28 and Title 50? Ref

____ Is the Congers appropriately taking a broad view of the implications of these developments in the context of the larger pattern of conduct illegally imposed on the American public? Ref

____ How closely is your state attorney general following these issues to decide when they, as a state-level entity, will prosecute a sitting President as hey are permitted? Ref

____ When does the White House have a plan to issue a definitive time line of what did or didn't happen; and why does it appear they have a hard time understanding what really happened with e-mails they created on a plan they devised; but they want us to believe that they are competent to remain in office and manage affairs of state? Ref

____ When does the White House plan to admit that it was doing something that was prohibited under the Constitution; and that it is not going to get away with bungling like this for two more years? Ref

____ What is the interest of the Congress to quickly rush to a legislative solution, when the evidence before us suggests the President ignores the law; and the legislation defies the Supreme Law? Ref

____ Who is Congress to suggest that it has the power to "approve or not approve" something that the Constitution prohibits, does not permit, and expressly requires something else: Senate involvement and approval of the appointment? Ref

____ If there was "no problem" with the US Attorney conduct, why did the US Attorneys for this long remain in office, but they were only fired when political allies of the President were prosecuted? Ref

____ When does Berenson plan to recuse himself from Sampson's legal issues because of Berenson's alleged complicity with the illegal activity, violation of the laws of war, and unlawful assent to illegal conduct while in the White House counsel's office? Ref

____ What is the plan of Congress to work with the DC and State Bars to investigate legal counsel for their allegedly reckless DOJ and White House counsel who appear not to understand their attorney standards of conduct; Ref

____ When does Congress plan to impeach DOJ Staff counsel to preclude the President from pardoning them? Ref

____ What is the White House plan to reconcile the differences between Elston's denial and those released by Bereson and Sampson In re the same issue: Communications with Members of Congress to intimidate US Attorneys to resign; and subsequent inconsistent statements over what did or didn't happen?

____ In light of DOJ OPR being blocked from reviewing the reckless disregard DOJ Staff counsel had for the NSL and warrant requirements, what can we say about the common course of conduct linking the President, Vice President, and Libby with retaliation against people attempting to enforce the law, do the right thing, or bring facts to the table related to GOP and Presidential criminal conduct?

____ How might we reconsider the Vice President's unusual insight into data about Valarie Plame that he supposedly knew nothing about prompting the question; but the apparent communications required with the NSA, State Department and others to create a question unrelated to any facts in the NYT Article? Ref

____ How do we compare the ruse question Rove appears to have raise in re US Attorneys; with the inexplicable line of evidence provided to the US Attorney in re Plame leaks: How many of the conversations does Rove have with the intent to mislead staff and create false lines of evidence knowing fully well he's doing something that is not consistent with the law, and directly related to direction he has from the President, Vice President, Gonzalez and Addington?

___ In light of the above revelations, how might we reconsider the White House-DoJ responses to the House Judiciary Committee in re NSA-FISA violations: Ref Were the responses misleading, in contravention tot he Attorney Standards of conduct; to what extent are the responses provided on the assumption that DOJ OPR would be blocked from following up on the DoJ IG findings in re NSL?

___ In light of the above lessons, what can we say about the reasonableness of these responses Ref relative to the DOJ IG findings on NSL; and how those assessments compare with the original DoJ Staff counsel response here: Ref

___ What do the US Attorney firings say about the pressure put on attorneys defending Guantanamo prisoners; or the Stimson effort to question attorneys who provided legal defense as required under Geneva? It's retaliation against attorneys for asserting their oath of office. This amounts to executive abuse of power: Imposing punishments [Exercising judicial power. Ref

___ What happens when people in positions of authority refuse to challenge the prosecutors and attorneys who have illegally targeted counsel for doing what the Geneva Conventions require. How does this result compare with the President's decision not to investigate the details of Plame name leak; or block DoJ OPR from reviewing findings which DOJ IG said were illegal? Ref

___ What illegal activity have DoJ Counsel engaged Ref; and why did the Attorney General not report this illegal activity , or his decision not to enforce the reports as required under Title 28? Ref

___ Based on the revelations of what was or wasn't done, how does the emerging pattern of conduct -- illegal activity, but failure to notify in writing Congress of a decision to not enforce the law -- reflect on the Attorney General and President in their decision not to fully meet the Title 28 and Title 50 exception report requirements? Ref

The US Attorney firings amount to a decision of the President not to enforce the law; punish people who refused to vioalte their attorney standards of conduct; and failure of the President to communicate in writing to Congerss as required under Title 50 his decision not to enforce the law agaisnt illegal retalation.