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Connecting dots: Kyle Sampson, Orrin Hatch, and Brett Tolman. And Arlen Specter.

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stevedeshazer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-28-07 09:48 PM
Original message
Connecting dots: Kyle Sampson, Orrin Hatch, and Brett Tolman. And Arlen Specter.
From the Salt Lake City Weekly:

Dual Ambition

How three BYU graduates crossed paths in the recent U.S. attorneys firing scandal.


http://www.slweekly.com/editorial/2007/cityweek_2_2007-...

<snip>

Last December, eight U.S. attorneys were fired by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales; three said they were let go for purely political reasons. At the center of this controversy is Section 502 of the PATRIOT Reauthorization Act of 2005. This provision, which was added to the bills conference report and thus was never heard in a congressional committee, made it possible for Gonzales to replace U.S. attorneys without Senate approval.

It was soon determined that this language could only have been inserted into the Patriot Act by Specter, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee at the time, or a member of his staff. Specter has adamantly denied he tried to slip in any such change and said that the provision was as much a surprise to him as it was to everyone else. Where, then, did it come from?

It is possible, probable even, that the Justice Department and the White House requested that section, and that a Judiciary Committee aide handled its addition without Specter ever being aware of it, said one Senate staffer, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

The aide in question is Provo native Brett Tolman, who, last year, was appointed Utahs U.S. attorney. Tolman arrived in Washington D.C. in 2003, working as a Judiciary Committee lawyer when Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch chaired the committee. In early 2005, Tolman was tasked with overseeing the drafting of the Patriot Acts reauthorization by Specter.

more at link

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Orrin Hatch is directly involved in these shenanigans.
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stevedeshazer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-28-07 09:51 PM
Response to Original message
1. more
Tolman has grabbed headlines over the past few months with a number of high-profile cases. His offices new white-collar crime task force indicted John and Susan Ross for allegedly defrauding the Davis County School District. Hes also taken the unusual step of indicting polygamist leader Warren Jeffs on federal flight charges. Sampson, meanwhile, is slated to testify before the Senate.

Prior to the firings, though, Sampson was confident scandal could be avoided. In his e-mails, Sampson made it clear that, to avoid damaging political fallout, it was crucial those involved maintained a unified front with a consistent story. This is where the plan broke down. When questions were first raised, Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty told Congress that the firings were for performance reasons, but this was vehemently contested by the former U.S. attorneys. Gonzales then claimed had they simply lost confidence, but that didnt quash questions about the timing of the firings.

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There's a lot here....
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Schema Thing Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-28-07 09:59 PM
Response to Original message
2. What Brett Tolman might have done there...
...uhm.. that sounds like perpetrating massive fraud on the American people?

Are there rules against this sort of thing?
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drm604 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-28-07 11:03 PM
Response to Original message
3. What I don't understand about all of this
is how that provision has any legal force. It was added fraudulently and was not what the Senate thought it was voting on. Can someone clear this up for me?
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pscot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-28-07 11:45 PM
Response to Original message
4. Hatch has really been laying low on this one
Given his seniority and his position on judiciary he should have been in the thick of the GOP defense. He's hiding something.
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