Tuesday, May 23, 2006

FBI Raids Congressional Office

In all appearances, Congressman Jefferson (D-La) is guilty as sin for taking bribes and adding to the already corrupt congress than inhabits D.C. He, along with any other corrupt politician, should be punished for their misdeeds and he should be run out of town on a rail. The fact that he is corrupt does not surprise me in the least. Louisiana has some of the most corrupt politicians in the country (regardless of party). A former Governor (who is now in federal prison) was even re-elected after he was indicted on federal bribery charges. Corruption in Louisiana is as common as the afternoon summer thunderstorm in the Mississippi delta. jefferson even says he plans on running for re-election, and in all honesty, it would not shock me in the least if he is re-elected (pending trial results).

But, the FBI raiding his capital hill office is going way beyond the separations of powers and is down right wrong. His home is one thing, but no congressman of any party should ever have their office raided in the middle of the night.

Even the likes of GOP leaders such as Senator Frist and Newt Gingrich are calling this a serious violation of presidential enforcement powers.

“What happened Saturday night ... is the most blatant violation of the Constitutional Separation of Powers in my lifetime,” Gingrich fumed, after having seen news of the search on CNN. “The President should respond accordingly and should discipline (probably fire) whoever exhibited this extraordinary violation. ... As a former Speaker of the House, I am shaken by this abuse of power.”

Who ever made the final call on this blunder should be given walking papers, and Bush should make sure of this. Of course, Bush doesn't seem to mind any other crossing of constitutional lines.

GOP worry over FBI’s raid on Dem

FBI Raid on Lawmaker's Office Is Questioned

So $90,000 Was in the Freezer. What's Wrong With That?


tommy said...

Well I don't think you should be able to use your office as a haven to store incriminating evidence.

Of all places, it being the property of the people and not the government, if a warrant is valid, it should be subject to search.

Anonymous said...

If it looks like sh**, and it smells like sh**, whether its in your office or under the rug...it probably is sh**!

Dingo said...

warrant or no warrant, it is a seperations of power issue and deliberately in the constitution for a reason. Do you really want the president to be able to have the power to search the offices of congressmen. Just as much as a president can assert presidential priviledge, the constitution was created to give the same protection to the congress to stop the ability of the president to indimidate or otherwise abuse power. There is a good reason even the GOP leadership is pissed about this.

Imagine the power of a president who could trump up some charges and search the office of a presidential contender.

tommy said...

what exactly does the constitution say about this? I thought they couldn't be detained from voting or speeches.

If it actually says that their office is beyond the reach of legal authorities then that gives them a sanctuary to hide any evidence they want.

I don't believe that is what it says.

tommy said...

Or do you believe the only thing Delay did wrong was not keep all the documentation in his office?

Dingo said...

Lets put it this way. As for any lawyer or doctor, law enforecement cannot just go in and search willy nilly unless there is clear evidence that the entire office is abused. They would produce a subpeona for specific documents relating to the issue at had.

Since the a Congressman cannot be detained for arrairs of office, privilege attaches to his papers and effects and his office would be consdered to be the repository of such objects.

Thus, therefore, and therehua, the correct way for this to have been done would be for the DOJ to issue a subpeona for any papers related to bribery investigation. A team of lawyers would be brought into the office and would search through the entire collection of papers. Anything that was not relevant is excluded. Anything where the privilege of office attaches, it is put on a "priviledge list." Anything relevant is turned over. If the DOJ has issues with anything of the privilege list, the DOJ goes in front of a judge and argues why it whould be turned over to the DOJ. If the judge agrees, it will be turned over. If the judge does not agree, it remains privileged.

This way, the consitutional integrety of the Congress as a spereate but equal branch is retained while allowing justice to be served. This is how it has been done with the president. Whis is how it should be done for congress and the judicial branch also.