How Am I Doing, Dick..?
All but one of the U.S. attorneys recently fired by the Justice Department had positive job reviews before they were dismissed, but many ran into political trouble with Washington over issues ranging from immigration to the death penalty, according to prosecutors, congressional aides and others familiar with the cases.
Two months after the firings first began to make waves on Capitol Hill, it has also become clear that most of the prosecutors were overseeing significant public-corruption investigations at the time they were asked to leave. Four of the probes target Republican politicians or their supporters, prosecutors and other officials said.
The emerging details stand in contrast to repeated statements from the Justice Department that six of the Republican-appointed prosecutors were dismissed because of poor performance. In one of the most prominent examples, agency officials pointed to widely known management and morale problems surrounding then-U.S. Attorney Kevin Ryan in San Francisco. <more>