The following is pretty damning. Not only because it lays out a very succinct timeline of when these firings started to take shape, but also the nature of how politically craven the justifications for the firings were.
Politics entered my life with two phone calls that I received last fall, just before the November election. One came from Representative Heather Wilson and the other from Senator Domenici, both Republicans from my state, New Mexico.
Ms. Wilson asked me about sealed indictments pertaining to a politically charged corruption case widely reported in the news media involving local Democrats. Her question instantly put me on guard. Prosecutors may not legally talk about indictments, so I was evasive. Shortly after speaking to Ms. Wilson, I received a call from Senator Domenici at my home. The senator wanted to know whether I was going to file corruption charges ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? the cases Ms. Wilson had been asking about ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? before November. When I told him that I didnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢t think so, he said, ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œI am very sorry to hear that,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚? and the line went dead.
A few weeks after those phone calls, my name was added to a list of United States attorneys who would be asked to resign ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? even though I had excellent office evaluations, the biggest political corruption prosecutions in New Mexico history, a record number of overall prosecutions and a 95 percent conviction rate. (In one of the documents released this week, I was deemed a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œdiverse up and comerÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚? in 2004. Two years later I was asked to resign with no reasons given.)
Get that folks? That’s his record.
And concerning that voter fraud…
As this story has unfolded these last few weeks, much has been made of my decision to not prosecute alleged voter fraud in New Mexico. Without the benefit of reviewing evidence gleaned from F.B.I. investigative reports, party officials in my state have said that I should have begun a prosecution. What the critics, who donÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢t have any experience as prosecutors, have asserted is reprehensible ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? namely that I should have proceeded without having proof beyond a reasonable doubt. The public has a right to believe that prosecution decisions are made on legal, not political, grounds.
WhatÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s more, their narrative has largely ignored that I was one of just two United States attorneys in the country to create a voter-fraud task force in 2004. Mine was bipartisan, and it included state and local law enforcement and election officials.
After reviewing more than 100 complaints of voter fraud, I felt there was one possible case that should be prosecuted federally. I worked with the F.B.I. and the Justice DepartmentÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s public integrity section. As much as I wanted to prosecute the case, I could not overcome evidentiary problems. The Justice Department and the F.B.I. did not disagree with my decision in the end not to prosecute.
This is a public servant doing his job. And the Bush administration saw fit to fire him for faulty political reasons. True, the President can fire anybody they please at any time, but to consistently lie about the reasons to cover their own ass shows how truly cowardly they can be.
So then, what would Iglesias want to see now?
President Bush addressed this scandal yesterday. I appreciate his gratitude for my service ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? this marks the first time I have been thanked. But only a written retraction by the Justice Department setting the record straight regarding my performance would settle the issue for me.
I wonder if he’ll get it…