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The DOJ Eight

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Recently I discussed the revelation that DOJ has brought on board seven lawyers who previously represented accused members of al Qaeda. 

I was in error.  It wasn't seven.  It was eight.  The eighth has a really nice office, in that he is the Attorney General.

It has now come out that Eric Holder worked on an amicus brief in the Padilla case.  As Powerline reports,

The Justice Department has admitted that Eric Holder failed to tell Congress during his confirmation process that he had contributed to a legal brief which argued that the President lacks authority to hold Jose Padilla, a U.S citizen declared an "enemy combatant," indefinitely without charge. The Justice Department has also acknowledged what is obvious -- that "the brief should have been disclosed as part of the confirmation process."

DOJ contends that the failure to disclose was not intentional. It says that "In preparing thousands of pages for submission, it was unfortunately and inadvertently missed."

Hello??

 

As Paul Mirengfoff has observed, a number of senators, and others, will view the inadvertence claim with skepticism. The Padilla case was, after all, an extremely high profile matter. Moreover, as Andy McCarthy notes, Holder wrote a letter to Senator McConnell a few months ago discussing the Padilla case at length, making points that seemed to be borrowed from the brief he worked on. This should have reminded Holder of his involvement with that brief and should have prompted him to correct his erroneous statement during his confirmation.

Senator Sessions has already expressed "deep[] concern" over what in a cynical world might be looked upon as a cover-up.  Certainly Senator John Kyl is skeptical of Holder's claim that forgetfulness explains his failure to inform the Senate of his role in the Padilla brief. Kyl asks: "Are we expected to believe that then-nominee Holder, with only a handful of Supreme Court briefs to his name, forgot about his role in one of this country's most publicized terrorism cases?"

To be fair, I worked on briefs in important cases, and I would have a hard time recalling all of them, much less what I said in all of them.  On the other hand, seldom if ever did I work on a case as notorious as Padilla, and no one nominated me to be Attorney General.

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To say that Holder's first 14 months as Attorney General have been horrific is an understatement. From his sanctimonious indictment of the United States as a "nation of cowards" to his shameful declination of prosecution in the New Black Panthers voting case to his reckless and ill-conceived decision to prosecute KSM in a civilian court in the heart of New York City, Holder has been ham-handed at best, antithetical to the interests of most Americans at worst.

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