Yesterday’s headlines were bombarded with news about the Supreme Court ruling on race in public school assignments, and some of us might have missed this. Yesterday too, Bush stonewalled important documents about the firing of those U.S. attorneys that has Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Bush stepping deeper into corruption quicksand. The Associated Press reported:
President Bush, in a constitutional showdown with Congress, claimed executive privilege Thursday and rejected demands for White House documents and testimony about the firing of U.S. attorneys. His decision was denounced as "Nixonian stonewalling" by the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Bush rejected subpoenas for documents from former presidential counsel Harriet Miers and former political director Sara Taylor. The White House made clear neither one would testify next month, as directed by the subpoenas. Presidential counsel Fred Fielding said Bush had made a reasonable attempt at compromise but Congress forced the confrontation by issuing subpoenas. "With respect, it is with much regret that we are forced down this unfortunate path which we sought to avoid by finding grounds for mutual accommodation." The assertion of executive privilege was the latest turn in increasingly hostile standoffs between the administration and the Democratic-controlled Congress over the Iraq war, executive power, the war on terror and Vice President Dick Cheney’s authority. A day earlier, the Senate Judiciary Committee delivered subpoenas to the offices of Bush, Cheney, the national security adviser and the Justice Department about the administration’s warrantless wiretapping program.
And many of us are so distracted by all the other mess happening in the Courts and with immigration, that we can hardly see too how Bush is reversing every major ethical standard created out of past, political disasters.