Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Don't Forget that it is William Jefferson's Own Fault

Byron York has looked at the affadavit that the Justice Department submitted when it asked a federal judge for the warrant to search Jefferson's office. In it they include a list of all the prior efforts that they had made to get the documents they sought. They explain why they think that a search of his office would be fruitful.
The government has exhausted all other reasonable methods to obtain these records in a timely manner short of requesting this search warrant. A member of Congressman Jefferson's staff has indicated to law enforcement agents that records relevant to the investigation remain in Congressman Jefferson's Capitol Hill office, which the government has been unable to obtain to date. Left with no other method, the government is proceeding in this fashion.
Sounds like they have a source who is talking in Jefferson's own office. What do you want to bet that he deliberately hid documents in his office thinking that he would be able to rely on the Justice Department respecting his taxpayer-funded sanctuary?

They then took extraordinary efforts to set up a special filter team to make sure that they only extracted papers that had to do with their case. Have all these legislators bloviating about their special privileges to be exempt from an FBI search even read this affidavit?

Just as Nixon did not have executive privilege to protect his taped conversations discussing a coverup and Clinton did not have a privilege to protect discussions with aides to cover up an illicit affair, Congressman Jefferson does not have a legislative privilege to protect his activities to accept bribes. There is no constitutional privilege for anyone in any of the three branches to protect them from authorities investigating criminal actions.

When the respect for Congress is at a depressingly low point, could Congressmen have found any surer way to lower it even further?