Dear Mr. Gonzales:
It’s time for you to go.
You’ve lost Republican Senators. You’ve lost the New York Times. When their editorial page writes:
If Attorney General Alberto Gonzales had gone to the Senate yesterday to convince the world that he ought to be fired, it’s hard to imagine how he could have done a better job, short of simply admitting the obvious: that the firing of eight United States attorneys was a partisan purge. Mr. Gonzales came across as a dull-witted apparatchik incapable of running one of the most important departments in the executive branch.
then one has to legitimately wonder why it is you’re still in your job. Worse, one has to wonder why you were ever qualified for your job to begin with. Later, when the Times calls you “incompetant,” I have to favor the latter, that you were never qualified.
At least, never qualified in the sense of serving as the chief law enforcement officer of the United States. It seems clear, Mr. Gonzales, that you are eminently qualified in serving as the President’s consigliere; you, after all, know where the bodies are buried. Now it’s entirely clear why Harriet Miers was nominated for the Supreme Court. She, too, knows where the bodies are buried. But as Richard Nixon learned in the 1970s, the Department of Justice and the Attorney General don’t serve to protect the President. They serve to protect the United States. This isn’t France. There is no “L’etat, c’est moi” the President can proclaim without being roundly mocked as a dunce.
If you had any decency, you would resign.
But you won’t go. You know where the bodies, yadda yadda yadda. Watching you flail, watching you in the death throes of your position will be amusing. More than that, it will leave a stench around the Presidency, a stench that will fasten to every Republican in Congress by the time the next election rolls around. Your flailing, your survival will bring your party down come 2008.