Cry, Cry, Baby Now!

James Rowley has a revealing story on Monica Goodling that sheds some light on the network of corruption that leads (so far) back to Karl Rove and Harriet Meiers. Goodling apparently knew already that she would have to take the fall.

A former U.S. Justice Department official and central figure in the firing of eight U.S. attorneys tearfully told a colleague two months ago her government career probably was over as the matter was about to erupt into a political storm, according to closed-door congressional testimony.

Monica Goodling, at the time an aide to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, sobbed for 45 minutes in the office of career Justice Department official David Margolis on March 8 as she related her fears that she would have to quit, according to congressional aides briefed on Margolis's private testimony to House and Senate investigators...

Three hours before Goodling visited his fourth-floor office, Margolis told House and Senate investigators that Sampson dropped by to say he had information Margolis needed to know, one congressional aide said.

Margolis recounted that Sampson read his e-mail exchanges with White House aides that showed the decisions on firing the prosecutors were closely coordinated with members of the president's staff, the aide said.

Stunned Reaction

Margolis recalled that he was stunned to learn the extent of White House involvement in the dismissals, congressional aides said. Margolis testified that preparation for McNulty's Senate testimony -- which took place more than a month before his meetings with Goodling and Sampson -- was based on the assumption that the White House only became involved at the end of the firing process, the aide said.

McNulty told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Feb. 6 that the White House's only involvement was that presidential aides were informed of the decision before the U.S. attorneys were told. Charles E. Schumer, the New York Democrat leading the Senate investigation into the dismissals, has since said that he believes McNulty may have been misled by Sampson.

Margolis testified that Sampson didn't explain why he hadn't disclosed the consultations with White House Counsel Harriet Miers and other White House aides nor did Margolis ask him, the aide said...

After Sampson left his office, Margolis testified that he went toward McNulty's office to inform his boss and stopped because Sampson had already gone into the room carrying the binder filled with White House e-mails, the aide said.

Why do I suspect that those emails were not among those turned over to the Judiciary Committee?

(via Josh Marshall)


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