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White House Blasted Justice Officials for Revealing Rove Cronyism

An e-mail contained in a batch of documents released to the Senate on Tuesday exposed a searing rebuke from then-White House political affairs director Sara Taylor, who criticized Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty for revealing that a U.S. attorney in Arkansas was fired to make room for a Karl Rove protege, not because of performance.


McClatchy Washington Bureau:

The White House’s former political director was furious at Justice Department officials for disclosing to Congress that the administration had forced out the U.S. attorney in Little Rock, Ark., to make way for a protege of Karl Rove, President Bush’s political adviser, according to documents released late Tuesday.

Then-White House political affairs director Sara Taylor spelled out her frustrations in a Feb. 16 e-mail to Kyle Sampson, then the chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

She sent the message after Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty told the Senate that unlike other federal prosecutors, U.S. Attorney Bud Cummins wasn’t fired for performance reasons, but to make way for former Republican political operative Tim Griffin. Griffin, serving as the interim U.S. attorney, then announced that he wouldn’t seek confirmation to the Arkansas post, but would remain until the Senate confirmed someone else. Griffin has since resigned.

“Tim was put in a horrible position; hung out to dry [with] no heads-up,” Taylor lashed out in the e-mail, which was sent from a Republican Party account rather than from her White House e-mail address. “This is not good for his long-term career.”

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