Abramoff Prosecutor Steps Down After Promoted by Bush

NYT reports that, “The investigation of Jack Abramoff, the disgraced Republican lobbyist, took a surprising new turn on Thursday when the Justice Department said the chief prosecutor in the inquiry would step down next week because he had been nominated to a federal judgeship by President Bush.”

Karl Rove is clearly losing his touch. While I am reasonably sure the appointment is above board–there was a reason he was put in charge of a high profile case like this to begin with, after all–it is positively dumb timing from a public relations standpoint.

FILED UNDER: General, , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. legion says:

    Surprisingly, I think this might actually be above-board… from what I’ve heard, the guy was originally tapped for this as early as last spring.

    Of course, it remains to be seen what sort of person he gets replaced with…

  2. Wait — it’s bad timing to promote the guy who charged, and got a guilty pleas from, Abramoff?

    So they shouldn‘t reward him?

  3. James Joyner says:

    Charlie: The investigation is ongoing. Taking the head guy out therefore disrupts it.

  4. nfn fnke says:

    While I am reasonably sure the appointment is above board–there was a reason he was put in charge of a high profile case like this to begin with, after all–it is positively dumb timing from a public relations standpoint.

    You may not like Karl Rove, James, but he is not stupid nor inclined to do things that may be perceived as irrational with regards to public relations.

    Rove is a political realist and it is pretty clear that the Abramoff corruption investigation has a good chance of spinning out of control for the White House. This is a clear move towards disrupting the investigation. The White House may take some knocks for this, but Rove is clearly hedging his bet that enduring slightly damaging criticism now is preferable to enduring widespread condemnation at a later date.