08/27/07 — Right to go: Alberto Gonzales was too flawed to lead department

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Right to go: Alberto Gonzales was too flawed to lead department

It seems like it has been months since anyone has uttered the name Alberto Gonzales. After all, there were just so many other issues to talk about.

So, the announcement this morning that the embattled attorney general will be leaving office came as a surprise, but not a shock.

Gonzales’ credibility has been flawed for many months now. Even though the charges against him with regard to the firing of the prosecutors were a stretch at best, the fact that he never seemed to know the answer to anything — or be able to give a straight response to queries about his actions — suggests trouble.

So, those who called for his head have won. There will be a new attorney general in the White House.

But before he goes, it is important to point out that the incident that caused the initial uproar is not what it seemed to be.

The removal of political appointees by a new administration is absolutely commonplace. And, for the record, was done with much more vehemence by President George W. Bush’s predecessor Bill Clinton.

And neither can be criticized for the move — not really. Political appointees understand they serve at the will of the commander in chief — and that if he or she is replaced, they might very well experience the same fate.

So, there was no real scandal here. Just politics as usual. In fact, you can see some of that politics locally, too when an administration changes.

What did Gonzales in — and probably should have — was his seeming inability to ever give a credible explanation for anything and his “faulty” memory.

Let’s hope his replacement has better skills.

Published in Editorials on August 27, 2007 11:16 AM