Excoriating Bush's 8 Attorney Firings, Ignoring Clinton's 93
Leading the rest of the press, the Times has gotten excited about the Bush administration's firing of eight U.S. attorneys, with hostile coverage that tracks closely to Democratic demands for investigations and for the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
Only one bit of context is missing: While the Bush administration has dismissed eight U.S. attorneys (who do serve at the pleasure of the president), back in March 1993, Bill Clinton's brand new Attorney General Janet Reno demanded the mass resignation of all 93 U.S. attorneys, including attorney Jay Stephens, who was not far from indicting corrupt Rep. Dan Rostenkowski, Democrat of Illinois.
"The recent dismissals upset the cultural order of things. While wholesale dismissals as administrations turn over are not unusual, and individual United States attorneys have occasionally been pushed out over scandals, the recent mass dismissal, on vague and shifting rationales, is unheard of in living memory."