Former Rove aide 'aggressively sought' US Attorney post
The "unusual appointment" of a former Rove aide to a US Attorney post that he "aggressively sought" has become one of the central issues in the current controversy, an article in Friday's Washington Post reports.
"Two months before Bud Cummins was fired as U.S. attorney in Little Rock, a protege of presidential adviser Karl Rove was maneuvering with the Justice Department to take his place," Dan Eggen and Amy Goldstein write.
The article continues, "Last April, Tim Griffin, a Rove aide and longtime GOP operative, sent the attorney general's chief of staff a flattering letter about himself written by Cummins, the prosecutor he was trying to replace, internal e-mails released this week show. Rove and Harriet Miers, then the White House counsel, were keenly interested in putting him in the position, e-mails reveal. New documents also show that Justice and White House officials were preparing for President Bush's approval of the appointment as early as last summer, five months before Griffin took the job."
"The unusual appointment of Griffin, now serving as the interim U.S. attorney in Little Rock, has been one of the central issues in the Justice Department's firing of eight U.S. attorneys, which led to this week's constitutional showdown between Congress and the White House over the testimony of some of Bush's closest advisers," the Post reports.
Radar Online took note of another Griffin email which showed him "aggressively" hustling for Cummins' job.
"One of the most controversial judicial appointments was that of J. Timothy Griffin, whose strongest qualifications for being named the U.S. attorney for Arkansas were that he worked as Karl Rove's assistant in 2005 and did opposition research for the Republicans during the 2000 campaign," the website noted. "In an e-mail to Monica Goodling, the Justice Department's liaison to the White House, Griffin passes along a few references that don't pop up on his resumé."
"I am good friends with both chiefs of staff to [Arkansas Senators] Pryor and Lincoln. Pryor's chief of staff is a good friend and Lincoln's was my high school girlfriend," Griffin wrote. "Should I say anything to them? I would hate for my senators to be told without my peeps knowing? [sic]"
Radar Online mocked, "The former girlfriend reference—always a solid way into a job as U.S. attorney!"
Excerpts from Post article:
Cummins said he had no idea of those plans until he was notified of his firing last June. Sometime in the next couple of months, he said, it became clear that Griffin was going to get the job, and Cummins stepped aside in December. "Was it because Tim Griffin was working for Karl Rove?" Cummins said this week. "I don't know, and I don't think it really matters at this point."
The e-mails, however, show just how aggressively Griffin sought the appointment. On April 27, for example, he used a private e-mail account to send a note to Sampson.
"Kyle, This might also be helpful," Griffin wrote, enclosing the flattering, four-paragraph note that Cummins had written nearly four years earlier, after Griffin had worked in his office as a special assistant U.S. attorney. "Just thought you should have it," Griffin said.
FULL POST ARTICLE CAN BE READ AT THIS LINK