Selective amnesia on firing US Attorneys

A common media trick to get editorial opinion into apparent news stories is the use of outside "scholars" to argue the writer's point for him. So, I was not astonished to read this
about the Gonzales kerfuffle in the St Louis Post- Dispatch:
Several former U.S. attorneys and legal scholars say the timing of the Bush administration's replacement of top federal prosecutors is not only atypical, but also a threat to the impartial exercise of justice.

"The sanctity of that position, in terms of that position being immune from any kind of pressure from the administration or Congress, has been the hallmark of the U.S. attorney process. It's been the hallmark of the federal system of justice," said W. Charles Grace, a former U.S. attorney for Illinois' southern district.
The article doesn't say which administration Mr. Grace served in .This is not surprising . When using this trick to squeeze opinion in a news story by using an outside "expert", the writer rarely discloses the expert's bias, usually Democratic. Googling his name, I see that he was a U.S. attorney in 1998 which suggests to me that President Clinton appointed him, and he appointed a lot of them, having fired every single US Attorney when he took office, and 30 more subsequently during his eight year term in office.

And while the number he replaced was astounding, his immediate Democratic predecessor, Jimmy Carter, replaced at least one during the middle of his term of office. Time Magazine reported:

"As Republicans rubbed their hands in glee, the Carter Administration last week found itself trying to explain away a skein of presidential lies. In a letter to Justice Department investigators looking into the firing two weeks ago of Philadelphia's Republican U.S. Attorney, David Marston, Carter last week corrected a misstatement he had made during a nationally televised press conference on Jan. 12. Republican Congressmen saw an opportunity to duplicate last summer's damaging controversy over Bert Lance's financial peccadilloes, and to lay siege again to what was once the President's pride: his credibility."

It was Carter's own fault. During his campaign he rashly declared,

"All federal judges and prosecutors should be appointed strictly on the basis of merit without any consideration of political aspects or influence."

Such appointments are traditionally made on a frankly political basis, and once Carter was ensconced in the Oval Office, that tradition was fully honored. Of the first 65 U.S. Attorneys named by the new Administration, 64 were Democrats. As House Speaker Tip O'Neill put it, "That's the way the System works." And, he might have added, the way Congressmen and Governors want it to work, no matter who is President.
Carter's problem was that he didn't tell the truth - several times - about his role in removing Marston. And it came out that he had been asked to fire Marston by one of the targets of an investigation, Rep. Joshua Eilberg of Pennsylvania. Nevertheless Carter went ahead and fired Marston.

It got worse. Marston had notified a Justice Department official that Eilberg was a target.

For some reason or other, nobody among the Democrats or media seems to remember this incident. And the GOP has not raised it either. That's just lame.
A common media trick to get editorial opinion into apparent news stories is the use of outside "scholars" to argue the writer's point for him. So, I was not astonished to read this
about the Gonzales kerfuffle in the St Louis Post- Dispatch:
Several former U.S. attorneys and legal scholars say the timing of the Bush administration's replacement of top federal prosecutors is not only atypical, but also a threat to the impartial exercise of justice.

"The sanctity of that position, in terms of that position being immune from any kind of pressure from the administration or Congress, has been the hallmark of the U.S. attorney process. It's been the hallmark of the federal system of justice," said W. Charles Grace, a former U.S. attorney for Illinois' southern district.
The article doesn't say which administration Mr. Grace served in .This is not surprising . When using this trick to squeeze opinion in a news story by using an outside "expert", the writer rarely discloses the expert's bias, usually Democratic. Googling his name, I see that he was a U.S. attorney in 1998 which suggests to me that President Clinton appointed him, and he appointed a lot of them, having fired every single US Attorney when he took office, and 30 more subsequently during his eight year term in office.

And while the number he replaced was astounding, his immediate Democratic predecessor, Jimmy Carter, replaced at least one during the middle of his term of office. Time Magazine reported:

"As Republicans rubbed their hands in glee, the Carter Administration last week found itself trying to explain away a skein of presidential lies. In a letter to Justice Department investigators looking into the firing two weeks ago of Philadelphia's Republican U.S. Attorney, David Marston, Carter last week corrected a misstatement he had made during a nationally televised press conference on Jan. 12. Republican Congressmen saw an opportunity to duplicate last summer's damaging controversy over Bert Lance's financial peccadilloes, and to lay siege again to what was once the President's pride: his credibility."

It was Carter's own fault. During his campaign he rashly declared,

"All federal judges and prosecutors should be appointed strictly on the basis of merit without any consideration of political aspects or influence."

Such appointments are traditionally made on a frankly political basis, and once Carter was ensconced in the Oval Office, that tradition was fully honored. Of the first 65 U.S. Attorneys named by the new Administration, 64 were Democrats. As House Speaker Tip O'Neill put it, "That's the way the System works." And, he might have added, the way Congressmen and Governors want it to work, no matter who is President.
Carter's problem was that he didn't tell the truth - several times - about his role in removing Marston. And it came out that he had been asked to fire Marston by one of the targets of an investigation, Rep. Joshua Eilberg of Pennsylvania. Nevertheless Carter went ahead and fired Marston.

It got worse. Marston had notified a Justice Department official that Eilberg was a target.

For some reason or other, nobody among the Democrats or media seems to remember this incident. And the GOP has not raised it either. That's just lame.