Thursday, March 29, 2007

Kyle Sampson: one smooth operator

Given his testimony today, ubiquitous on YouTube (TPMmuckraker is a great source for contextualized clips), you can see why he was touted as the next Karl Rove. He looks like him, he sounds like him, he's a shrewd, canny operator. He held his own as best as he could given the bunk he was defending. He was forced to acknowledge, for e.g., that if he were in a position to do it over, he wouldn't fire U.S. attorney David Iglesias, given Iglesias' stellar performance record. And of course, he regrets his role in the entire mess. Naturally, now that he's been caught.

Also of note today, he admitted that he brought up Patrick Fitzgerald's name as a possible attorney to be fired but was given the cold shoulder. He certainly pushed the limits of possibilities, this Rove acolyte. The nerve of these little Bush piss ants with little prosecutorial experience having the brazen audacity to suggest that one of the most highly regarded prosecutors in the U.S. be turfed while that prosecutor is in the midst of conducting an investigation/prosecution of the Vice President's Chief of Staff, Scooter Libby. And he freely admits to the world, oh yes, I raised it and it was inappropriate.

I don't think anyone should be under any illusions about the effect of Sampson's statement today and the previous acknowledgement that Fitzgerald had been ranked as "not distinguished" on Sampson's ongoing list of prosecutors status. It is a distinct possibility, that had the Democrats not won in November, Patrick Fitzgerald would have been turfed by now. Who would have stopped them?

Other big news from Sampson's testimony made early in the day, this: Sampson contradicting A.G. Gonzales' professed lack of involvement in the firings. And Gonzales is going to be called to testify again.

Here's a fair synopsis on the effect of Sampson's testimony:
Sampson today may be earnest and even on occasion honest. But he is painting a devastating picture of a Justice Department and White House that decided first what was to be done and then tried to figure out a way to justify it. When you work backwards like that, you usually get in big trouble. And little Sampson has said during his first few hours of testimony suggests otherwise. His words to the senators make it even more likely that the Attorney General will have to leave his post, sooner rather than later.