Court upholds most of Siegelman’s charges

From ThinkProgress:

Today, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta upheld five of the seven charges against former Democratic Alabama governor Don Siegelman, who was the victim of political prosecution by Karl RoveMore..

More from The New York Times:

…The three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals was unanimous in ruling that there was enough evidence to convict Mr. Siegelman of bribery for having appointed a campaign contributor to a state hospital licensing board, rejecting his arguments that the testimony of a key aide who turned against him was not enough.

The judges threw out two lesser charges against Mr. Siegelman having to do principally with the actions of the businessman he appointed to the hospital board, Richard Scrushy, whose separate conviction was upheld. The judges thus rejected the prosecution’s contention that Mr. Siegelman had participated in a “broader self-dealing scheme.”

The appeals court judges also ordered that the former governor return to the trial court to be sentenced anew. He has already served nine months of his sentence, in a federal penitentiary in Louisiana…. Read more..

This is really wrong.

Siegelman: Rove ‘a two-headed rattlesnake’

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Don Siegelman was a guest on The Rachel Maddow Show last night on MSNBC. They discussed Karl Rove’s ‘imminent’ testimony before the House Judiciary Committee behind closed doors. Issues to be brought up before the committee will likely be the firing of U.S. Attorneys to what role Rove played in the case of Don Siegelman (and his political prosecution).

Maddow: “Are you optimistic that this particular form of testimony by Karl Rove is going to be an appropriate venue for learning the truth about your case?”

Siegelman: “Karl Rove is like a double-headed rattlesnake. You’re going to have to back him into a corner before you get anything out of him, and, just like an infected wound, the wound that has been created in this country by the subversion of our Constitutional rights, the abuse of power, the use of the Department of Justice as a political weapon, this wound also has to be cleaned before the American people can feel safe about their democracy again.

So getting at the truth is not going to be easy and it’s not going to be quick, and I think that rushing through this is not going to instill faith in the American people that we’ve done a good job.

So, I would encourage Congress to take their time and to look at other people who also can lay the foundation to put Karl Rove in check. There are other people—Karl Rove didn’t fire these U.S. Attorneys on his own. He didn’t plot the prosecution of Democrats by himself. He didn’t carry those acts out by himself….”

Siegelman believes Rove will never testify truthfully.

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Don Siegelman on Karl Rove showing up (or not) in front of Congress

From YouTube (VRA):

In 2002 Karl Rove and members of the Bush political machine hijacked the Alabama Gubernatorial Election.

On the night of the election, popular Democrat Don Siegelman went to bed with the election won, only to wake up the next morning and find the election had been stolen. He was then jailed on trumped up corruption charges, and remained there until 2008 when he was released pending his appeal.

Congress is investigating the Republican case against Siegelman, and Karl Rove has been subpoenaed to testify on July 10th, 2008.

He is not expected to show up.

Here’s more from Larisa AlexandrovnaMuch info coming out about the Siegelman case…

Rove says no to testifying?

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Raw Story:

A House Judiciary Committee deadline passed Monday with former White House adviser Karl Rove standing by his refusal to testify about allegations that he pushed the Justice Department to prosecute former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman.

In his latest offer to settle the matter, Rove sent the panel a letter offering to respond to questions in writing, according to his attorney. But he reiterated that he would not testify publicly and under oath.

Committee leaders did not immediately answer questions about how they will respond. Earlier this month, they threatened to subpoena Rove if he did not agree to appear voluntarily by Monday.

The dispute is the latest in a standoff between President Bush and Congress over testimony from current and former White House staffers on a variety of issues.

Hmmmm. Seems he’s now singing a different tune… What a liar – and a coward.

On April 7th, 2008, Rove’s attorney said he would agree to testify if subpoenaed by Congress. I wonder what changed his mind..? Perhaps the fact that Don Siegelman is out of prison awaiting an appeal – and talking?

Will Karl Rove stall over the course of the next six months in hopes of receiving his very own “get out of jail free” card (more likely “keep out of jail” card) from the president?

For more on Don Siegelman, who he is and how this all relates to Karl Rove, read these previous posts:

From TheZoo

From BradBlog

From Larisa Alexandrovna

From Scott Horton (Harper’s Magazine)

From Raw Story (Part 1), Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, and Part 6.

Siegelman: Rove ‘hijacked’ the Dept. of Justice to win elections

Raw Story

In an extensive interview with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, who was released from prison on bond last month pending an appeal of his conviction on corruption charges, laid the blame for his prosecution squarely on Karl Rove’s “hijacking” of the federal Department of Justice.

“This is not about me, it’s not about my case,” Siegelman emphasized in his appearance on Air America’s Ring of Fire, a show hosted by Kennedy and Mike Papantonio available online at GoLeft.tv. “This is about America, and about a quest now that must be pursued to find out who was responsible for hijacking the Department of Justice and using it as a political tool to win elections. I believe that person that Congress will ultimately hold responsible is Karl Rove.”

To view this EXCELLENT interview, watch this video: go here – and scroll down. It is well worth it.

Heh. I’m getting popcorn…

ThinkProgress:

Over a week ago, Faiz did a post on ThinkProgress about Rove’s attorney saying he would agree to testify in the case of former Alabama Governor Siegelman. At the time, I thought “that ain’t happening,” but I was sure I was wrong since Rove would probably be under subpoena.

MSNBC’s Dan Abrams reported:

ABRAMS: We asked this question to his attorney: Will Karl Rove agree to testify if Congress issues a subpoena to him as part of an investigation into the Siegelman case? The answer we got — “Sure.”

Silly old gullible me…

But now Luskin is saying that Rove won’t testify unless the White House says he can, claiming that MSNBC took his comments “out of context.” Roll Call reports:

MSNBC provided Roll Call with an e-mail exchange with Luskin that the network broadcast in which a producer asked, “Will Karl Rove agree to testify if Congress issues a subpoena to him as part of an investigation into the Siegelman case?”

“Sure,” wrote Luskin, according to the e-mail. “Although it seems to me that the question is somewhat offensive. It assumes he has something to hide.”

But in an interview with Roll Call, Luskin said that his MSNBC comments were taken out of context.

“Whether, when and about what a former White House official will testify … is not for me or my client to decide,” but is part of an ongoing negotiation between the White House and Congress over executive privilege issues, Luskin said.

To paraphrase the Great Jon Stewart:  The only way that comment could be taken out of context, is if I said “Would I be a big giant asshole if I said ‘Sure?'”  Come on…

By the way, assuming Karl Rove has something to hide, is a safe assumption.  I’m not a gambling kind of girl, but I’d put my life’s savings on that one.

Is claiming “Executive Privilege” a little sticky once you don’t work in the White House anymore?  Anyone…?

House committee asks Rove to testify about Alabama governor

Raw Story

The House Judiciary Committee is taking Karl Rove up on an offer to testify about claims that he influenced a federal corruption case against former Democratic Gov. Don Siegelman of Alabama.

Calling Rove the “missing link” in its investigation into politicization of the justice department, the committee on Thursday asked the former White House adviser to appear under oath soon. The panel also wants the Justice Department’s inspector general to investigate allegations that political motivations drove the Siegelman case and several other federal prosecutions during the Bush administration.

“There continue to be numerous complaints of selective or politically motivated prosecution since our investigation began last year. The actions we are taking today, including calling Karl Rove to testify, are an effort to get to the bottom of this matter,” Judiciary Committee chairman John Conyers said.

“The Justice Department has simply not been forthcoming,” he continued, “and I feel the only way to move this investigation forward is to seek further independent investigation and testimony from Karl Rove, who appears to be the missing link in a chain from the White House to the Justice Department.”

Balls in your court Karl.. Time to put your money where your mouth is.

Or… Time to put your mouth where your money is.. Thanks Walt! 😀

Previous articles on TheZoo about Don Siegelman.

He’s out!!

Freed Alabama Ex-Governor Sees Politics in His Case

via: The New York Times

Former Governor Don Siegelman of Alabama, released from prison today on bond in a bribery case, said he was as convinced as ever that politics played a leading role in his prosecution.

In a telephone interview shortly after he walked out of a federal prison in Oakdale, La., Mr. Siegelman said there had been “abuse of power” in his case, and repeatedly cited the influence of Karl Rove, the former White House political director.

“His fingerprints are smeared all over the case,” Mr. Siegelman said, a day after a federal appeals court ordered him released on bond and said there were legitimate questions about his case.

Mr. Rove has strenuously denied any involvement in the conviction of the former governor, who was sentenced to serve seven years last June after being convicted in 2006. He could not immediately be reached for comment today.

Mr. Siegelman served nine months while his lawyers appealed a federal judge’s refusal to release him on bond, pending the ex-governor’s appeal of his conviction. That refusal was overturned by the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit on Thursday.

The former governor, a Democrat, said he would “press” to have Mr. Rove answer questions about his possible involvement in the case before Congress, which has already held a hearing on Mr. Siegelman. On Thursday, the House Judiciary Committee signaled its intention to have Mr. Siegelman testify about the nature of his prosecution.

“It feels great to be out,” Mr. Siegelman said. “I wish I could say it was over. But we’re a long way from the end of this.”

Read entire article…

House Judicial Committee wants Siegelman to testify

via: Raw Story

The House Judiciary Committee asked the Justice Department Thursday to temporarily release former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman from prison in early May to testify before Congress about possible political influence over his prosecution.

A spokeswoman for the committee said Siegelman, a Democrat serving more than seven years in a Louisiana prison, would travel to Washington under guard of the U.S. Marshals Service. She said Committee Chairman John Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, wants to hear directly from Siegelman because lawmakers are having trouble getting information elsewhere, particularly from the Justice Department.

“The chairman has determined it would be appropriate to hear from Mr. Siegelman himself and believes he would have a lot to add to the committee’s investigation into selective prosecution,” spokeswoman Melanie Roussell said.

Democrats last year began reviewing Siegelman’s 2006 corruption conviction as part of a broader investigation into allegations of political meddling at the Justice Department by the Bush administration.

Justice and the federal prosecutors who handled the prosecution have denied any political influence, emphasizing that Siegelman was convicted by a jury. But critics, including about 50 former state attorneys general, have called for a review and said the case raises a number of questions.

The effort gained momentum after a Republican lawyer who had volunteered for Siegelman’s re-election opponent — current Republican Gov. Bob Riley — said she overheard conversations suggesting that former White House adviser Karl Rove was talking with Justice officials about Siegelman’s prosecution.

Last month, CBS’s “60 Minutes” reported that a key witness against Siegelman said that prosecutors met with him some 70 times and had him repeatedly write out his testimony because they were frustrated with his recollection of events.

Siegelman was elected governor in 1998 and served one term. He was convicted in 2006 on six bribery-related and one obstruction of justice charge.

Wow!! Maybe justice will finally see the light of day.

Other posts from TheZoo on the story of Don Siegelman can be found here.

It Does Happen in America; The Political Trial of Don Siegelman

I will continue to post all good articles and posts on the Don Siegelman story. As long as this man is imprisoned for political purposes, then this story must be kept in the forefront. What happened to this man cannot and must not be tolerated in this country.

via: OpEdNews

by Paul Craig Roberts

Don Siegelman, a popular Democratic governor of Alabama, a Republican state, was framed in a crooked trial, convicted on June 29, 2006, and sent to Federal prison by the corrupt and immoral Bush administration.

The frame-up of Siegelman and businessman Richard Scrushy is so crystal clear and blatant that 52 former state attorney generals from across America, both Republicans and Democrats, have urged the US Congress to investigate the Bush administration’s use of the US Department of Justice to rid themselves of a Democratic governor who “they could not beat fair and square,” according to Grant Woods, former Republican Attorney General of Arizona and co-chair of the McCain for President leadership committee. Woods says that he has never seen a case with so “many red flags pointing to injustice.”

The abuse of American justice by the Bush administration in order to ruin Siegelman is so crystal clear that even the corporate media organization CBS allowed “60 Minutes” to broadcast on February 24, 2008, a damning indictment of the railroading of Siegelman. Extremely coincidental “technical difficulties” caused WHNT, the CBS station covering the populous northern third of Alabama, to go black during the broadcast. The station initially offered a lame excuse of network difficulties that CBS in New York denied. The Republican-owned print media in Alabama seemed to have the inside track on every aspect of the prosecution’s case against Siegelman. You just have to look at their editorials and articles following the 60 Minutes broadcast to get a taste of what counts for “objective journalism” in their mind.

Continue reading….

Paul Craig Roberts, a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, has been reporting shocking cases of prosecutorial abuse for two decades. A new edition of his book, The Tyranny of Good Intentions, co-authored with Lawrence Stratton, a documented account of how Americans lost the protection of law, is forthcoming from Random House in March, 2008.

BUSH LEAGUE JUSTICE: Abrams Wants Gov. Siegelman Released!

BradBlog has another post about Don Siegelman which covers another segment of “Bush League Justice” with Dan Abrams on MSNBC covering the story.

Siegelman’s Daughter States That Her Father Knows Karl Rove Is Behind His Prosecution
Says Judge ‘Trying To Keep Her Dad Hushed As Long As He Possibly Can’
Dan Abrams once again tackles the Don Siegelman case in his stellar “Bush League Justice” series on MSNBC. Tonight’s guests included Scott Horton of Harper’s, former Alabama GOP operative Dana Jill Simpson, and Governor Siegelman’s daughter, Dana Siegelman.

Read more..

Amazingly, Siegelman is unable to appeal his case because the government has failed to produce a transcript of the trial which was completed over 18 months ago.

What the hell is going on here..? This story REEKS!

The New York Times had an editorial this morning: “Alabama TV News Censorship?

“Bush League Justice” Series (MSNBC) does segment on Don Siegelman

Dan Abrams calls for Attorney General Mukasey to open an investigation. This segment is in a followup to the segment by 60 Minutes which aired last Sunday.

Over at BradBlog, there is a followup post with video showing Karl Rove helping (unwittingly) to hold up a banner that reads “Free Don Siegelman”.. (Awkward..)

There is also audio of a Q&A at the Gibson Amphitheater in Los Angeles where Rove is questioned on (and denies) recent charges made against him by a Republican operative in Alabama concerning the prosecution of Alabama’s former Democratic Governor Don Siegelman.

Who is Don Siegelman? And, why should we care?

This first part is from Mark Crispin Miller’s Blog:

Siegelman Speaks! Alabama Ex-Gov Calls ’02 Election “Stolen” by the White House!
by Mark Crispin Miller

Here is some amazing video: a very candid interview with Don Siegelman, who spoke to Julie Sigwart of Take Back the Media on Sept. 13, 2004–months before the Governor was finally put away on trumped-up charges by the Alabama GOP.

As he himself makes clear, Siegelman’s ordeal began back in 2000, when he came out early on, and publicly, against the presidential bid of his fellow governor, George W. Bush, and backed Al Gore instead. It was a move that Karl Rove never did forget, and never would forgive, says Siegelman.

Rove’s long drive to destroy the Alabama governor resulted in the theft of the 2002 election for Republican Bob Riley. Here Siegelman describes that theft–which took place primarily in Baldwin County–and also talks about his handling of that matter.

So far, the mainstream press coverage of Don Siegelman’s ordeal has pointedly ignored the theft of the 2002 election. Clearly, Siegelman himself does not regard that theft as a side issue, but as a major crime, and one that is quite relevant to his whole story.

Today, the Alabama governor is not allowed to speak up on his own behalf. He’s locked away inside a federal prison cell, and, for good measure, has been silenced by the Alabama courts. As Scott Horton has so aptly put it, Don Siegelman is the Man in the Iron Mask.

So let’s do everything we can to get this interview played far and wide, so that his fellow citizens can finally hear him, and see him, talk about the criminal campaign against him.

PART ONE

PART TWO

On Harpers’ Magazine website, Scott Horton has done a series of 41 blog posts on Don Siegelman and what has happened to him, and why. This takes a while to get through them, but they are VERY worth the read. Scott started writing on this story June 1, 2007.

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