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Monday, February 01, 2010

Conflict of Interest ?


It turns out that one of the people arrested when they were apparently attempting to tap Senator Landrieu's phone is the son of the acting US attorney for Lousiana's Western District.

A fourth person arrested, Robert Flanagan, 24, of New Orleans, the son of the Shreveport-based acting U.S. attorney for Louisiana's Western District, also has been silent.

The son is now charged with a federal crime. The alleged crime was committed in Louisiana's Eastern district, so father is not in charge of investigating and possibly prosecuting son. That's something.

Now fathers and sons can disagree, but it is odd that the son of a Lousiana US attorney is a ciminal enemy of the one Louisiana senator of the Presidents party (that is the person who typically chooses Louisiana US attorneys).

The key, of course, is the word "acting." I'm sure that Mr Flanagan Sr was appointed by Bush and hasn't been replaced because it is impossible to get nominees through the Senate.

Here we have a Senate so disfunctional that it can't protect itself from criminal families.

I think the key feature is that Republicans ignore all norms and traditions, while Obama is determined to raising the level of fair play in Washington and invents new norms which restrict his ability to fight back.

I'm sure the Republic is not doomed. I am confident that something will save it. I just have no idea what that might be.

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