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The Democrats Can't Back Down on Attorneygate

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Today The New York Times had an article about the President’s call to refuse to let White House staffers such as Karl Rove and Harriet Miers testify under oath at a Senate hearing on the firings of eight Federal Attorneys. I There also was a vote on the Patriot Act “to revoke the authority they had granted the administration last year under the USA Patriot Act to install federal prosecutors indefinitely without Senate confirmation”.

So far this has been a good thing for the people of this country. If the Democrats hold firm and don’t cave in to White House pressure to keep Rove and Miers out of testifying under oath, it will be a very good thing but I believe that they will cave. So far, on almost every issue, the Democrats have shown the nation that you can still walk and talk, even hold a full time job, when you are missing a backbone. It must be a miracle of science, but the Democrats are proving everyday that a backbone is something a human being can live without.

If the Democrats do indeed refuse to go to court and negotiate everything away on another trip to the White House, then this nation will be in a worse position than before the firings. It will finally prove that the Democrats do not need to be taken seriously and that there is nothing stopping this administration from doing exactly what it wants. While certain members of the Democratic Party might make some political points in the process, if they don’t carry this ball all the way, they will do so at the peoples expense.

This is an issue that has to be addressed. For this President, or any President or his staff, to be allowed to fire Federal Attorneys for political reasons smacks of dictatorship. Once installed they should be given the right to investigate breaches of the law, regardless of where the chips may fall. A Federal Prosecutor can not have his or her hands tied when it comes to prosecuting crimes. A crime is a crime, whether I commit it, or the President commits it. They should not serve at the will of the President. Already there has been far too much leverage on the Attorney General’s office by this White House. The Attorney General once confirmed should be an in dependant voice of the law, not a personal attorney to the President.

What I truly dread is that politicians from both parties will politicize this issue, but when push comes to shove, they will lie down and claim that they are “doing it for the good of the people, to spare them the spectacle of defying the President in court”. They could claim that they have sufficiently made their point and a court case would not be in anyone’s best interests.

This would be a complete surrender by the Democrats. The last thing this nation needs to see is them backing down on this. They chose this time, and this place to stand up to White House bullying. It’s now time to see if they have the moral convictions of their claims. If they do back down they will be effectively telling this President that he has a green light to do exactly as he wishes. This cannot happen. Already this President has claimed way too much power with his “Unitary Powers” theory. He has used this so-called “War on Terror” to give himself the right to go where no other President has ever dared to go; from the power to try civilians by courts-martial, to invading and searching residences without a warrant. The American people have naively given him anything he has requested. It has to stop somewhere. Let it stop here.
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Tim Gatto is Ret. US Army and has been writing against the Duopoly for the last decade. He has two books on Amazon, Kimchee Days or Stoned Colds Warriors and Complicity to Contempt.

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