Obama to Name a Politically Connected Dem as US Attorney in Iowa

Richard Henry Lee
Another “Politics as Usual” moment for Obama as he is poised to name a Democrat as US Attorney for Iowa’s Southern District.  The Des Moines Register reports that Democrat US Senator Tom Harkin has announced he will submit the name of Nick Klinefeldt for Obama’s consideration. Klinefeldt is an attorney who is connected to the Iowa Democratic Party. According to the Register,
The West Des Moines resident also represented the Iowa Democratic Party, the Obama campaign and state House and Senate candidates in campaign matters, according to his resume.
Klinefeldt also is a former law clerk for Robert Pratt, the chief judge in U.S. District Court in Des Moines. Pratt is a longtime friend and supporter of Harkin.
Later in the article, Harkin is quoted as stating that there were no political considerations involved:
"I can tell you right now, the political considerations were not the deciding factor, considering some of the people who did not get it,".
It is hard to keep a straight face when reading this.

A search of campaign finance records reveals that Klinefeldt donated $500 to Obama’s presidential campaign and $250 to ACTBLUE, a Democratic political committee. Klinefeld would replace Matt Whitaker, who was appointed by President Bush in 2004.

This practice of Senators from the same party as the president nominating US Attorneys has been going on for some time, and this practice seems to be continuing despite Obama’s promise to be bipartisan in the selection of nominees.

Harkin also nominated a woman for US Attorney of Northern Iowa, Stephanie Rose, who is currently serving as an Assistant US Attorney in that office. There is no mention of her political affiliation and a search of campaign contributions yielded nothing.

The Washinton Post also has a
story describing the dilemma that Obama is facing since the Democrats cried foul when President Bush fired some US Attorneys for supposedly political reasons.
One of the better spoils of winning the presidency is the power to appoint nearly 100 top prosecutors across the country. But filling the plum jobs has become a test of competing priorities for President Obama. While he pledged bipartisanship during his campaign, replacing the cadre of mostly conservative U.S. attorneys would signal a new direction.
The statement about a new direction is curious since the "new direction" would be old politics.
The WaPo story also states that US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who is currently prosecuting former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, will remain. Fitzgerald also secured the conviction of Tony Rezko who was a prominent, early supporter of Obama and who helped Obama purchase his home.

Regarding Rezko, there was speculation that he might turn state’s evidence to assist Fitzgerald in the prosecution of corruption in Illlinois. We are still waiting for him to sing.
Another “Politics as Usual” moment for Obama as he is poised to name a Democrat as US Attorney for Iowa’s Southern District.  The Des Moines Register reports that Democrat US Senator Tom Harkin has announced he will submit the name of Nick Klinefeldt for Obama’s consideration. Klinefeldt is an attorney who is connected to the Iowa Democratic Party. According to the Register,
The West Des Moines resident also represented the Iowa Democratic Party, the Obama campaign and state House and Senate candidates in campaign matters, according to his resume.
Klinefeldt also is a former law clerk for Robert Pratt, the chief judge in U.S. District Court in Des Moines. Pratt is a longtime friend and supporter of Harkin.
Later in the article, Harkin is quoted as stating that there were no political considerations involved:
"I can tell you right now, the political considerations were not the deciding factor, considering some of the people who did not get it,".
It is hard to keep a straight face when reading this.

A search of campaign finance records reveals that Klinefeldt donated $500 to Obama’s presidential campaign and $250 to ACTBLUE, a Democratic political committee. Klinefeld would replace Matt Whitaker, who was appointed by President Bush in 2004.

This practice of Senators from the same party as the president nominating US Attorneys has been going on for some time, and this practice seems to be continuing despite Obama’s promise to be bipartisan in the selection of nominees.

Harkin also nominated a woman for US Attorney of Northern Iowa, Stephanie Rose, who is currently serving as an Assistant US Attorney in that office. There is no mention of her political affiliation and a search of campaign contributions yielded nothing.

The Washinton Post also has a
story describing the dilemma that Obama is facing since the Democrats cried foul when President Bush fired some US Attorneys for supposedly political reasons.
One of the better spoils of winning the presidency is the power to appoint nearly 100 top prosecutors across the country. But filling the plum jobs has become a test of competing priorities for President Obama. While he pledged bipartisanship during his campaign, replacing the cadre of mostly conservative U.S. attorneys would signal a new direction.
The statement about a new direction is curious since the "new direction" would be old politics.
The WaPo story also states that US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who is currently prosecuting former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, will remain. Fitzgerald also secured the conviction of Tony Rezko who was a prominent, early supporter of Obama and who helped Obama purchase his home.

Regarding Rezko, there was speculation that he might turn state’s evidence to assist Fitzgerald in the prosecution of corruption in Illlinois. We are still waiting for him to sing.