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The Laws Need Not Apply

(Photo via L-ines.)

Buried at the end of David Johnston's piece for the NYTimes is this nugget:

In another development, a federal watchdog agency that investigates violations of employment laws has opened a preliminary inquiry into last year’s dismissal of David C. Iglesias, the former United States attorney in New Mexico, an agency spokesman said.

Mr. Iglesias has been interviewed by investigators from the Office of Special Counsel, an executive branch agency that investigates accusations of employment abuses under laws including those that protect the rights of military reservists like Mr. Iglesias, who is a Navy lawyer.

Loren Smith, a spokesman for the agency, said Mr. Iglesias had filed a complaint.

Under the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-employment Rights Act, employees may not be demoted or dismissed because of absences for military service. Some Justice Department officials said Mr. Iglesias was removed in part because he had been absent and had left an assistant in charge.

If the office determined that Mr. Iglesias had a valid claim, it could seek remedies like back pay or reinstatement in administrative proceedings. Mr. Iglesias has said he does not want to return to office. The office does not have authority to conduct criminal investigations.

Mr. Iglesias said that he was gone from his office 36 to 45 days a year for required military service and that he had notified the Justice Department each time he left for duty.

Apparently, for the Bush Administration, the laws need not apply. Unfortunately for the would-be boy king, karma doesn't care about his pet unilateral executive theory — and neither should anyone else who respects the rule of law. Will the Bush Administration get its comeuppance based on their trumped up, faux public rationale — paraded all over New Mexico by willing, deep-pocket stooges doing Rove's dirty smear work? Now that would be worth a parade.

And I do not not want to hear a word — not one word — about how the Bush Administration supports the troops.  Iglesias was serving his nation, in uniform, and the Bush Administration tried to use that service as a public swipe against him.  That is beyond shameful.  This sort of disrespect and disregard for the truth — even with regard to service to one's nation in uniform — might explain the recent spate of underwhelming welcomes that President Bush has been getting at military bases.

Karma — just doesn't play around, does she?

UPDATEAP and the NYTimes just picked up the Minnesota USAtty resignation story.

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com