I Wish I Could Be Middling…

March 20th, 2007at 11:15am Posted by Eli

Yeah, right…

U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald was ranked among prosecutors who had “not distinguished themselves” on a Justice Department chart sent to the White House in March 2005, when he was in the midst of leading the CIA leak investigation that resulted in the perjury conviction of a vice presidential aide, administration officials said yesterday.

The ranking placed Fitzgerald below “strong U.S. Attorneys . . . who exhibited loyalty” to the administration but above “weak U.S. Attorneys who . . . chafed against Administration initiatives, etc.,” according to Justice documents.

The chart was the first step in an effort to identify U.S. attorneys who should be removed. Two prosecutors who received the same ranking as Fitzgerald were later fired, documents show.

Okay, I guess I can see the “loyalty” thing, but that really shouldn’t be at the top of a prosecutor’s priorities list…

Mary Jo White, who supervised Fitzgerald when she served as the U.S. attorney in Manhattan and who has criticized the firings, said ranking him as a middling prosecutor “lacks total credibility across the board.”

“He is probably the best prosecutor in the nation — certainly one of them,” said White, who worked in the Clinton and Bush administrations. “It casts total doubt on the whole process. It’s kind of the icing on the cake.”

Mary Jo White is a pretty good attack dog in her own right – in a perfect world, she would be a great replacement for Gonzo.

But hey, maybe Fitz’s low ranking has nothing to do with the Plame case – maybe they let him handle the ame case because they believed their own ratings and thought he really was mediocre. I know, it’s just too perfect to hope for, but it’s as good an explanation as any for why someone as sharp and independent as Fitz got anywhere near that case.

(h/t Caro Kay at MakeThemAccountable.com)

Entry Filed under: Bush,Corruption/Cronyism,Libby/Plame,Politics,Republicans

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