As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Iglesiasgate: The Other Shoe Drops

Via Kevin Drum, sources are now directly charging Heather Wilson and Pete Domenici for tampering with a federal investigation:

Sen. Pete Domenici and Rep. Heather Wilson of New Mexico pressured the U.S. attorney in their state to speed up indictments in a federal corruption investigation that involved at least one former Democratic state senator, according to two people familiar with the contacts.

The alleged involvement of the two Republican lawmakers raises questions about possible violations of House of Representatives and Senate ethics rules and could taint the criminal investigation into the award of an $82 million courthouse contract.

The two people with knowledge of the incident said Domenici and Wilson intervened in mid-October, when Wilson was in a competitive re-election campaign that she won by 875 votes out of nearly 211,000 cast.

This is huge, and Tuesday's House Judiciary Committee hearing will keep this in the news even more, when Iglesias fingers Wilson and Domenici himself. I heard Iglesias on NPR tonight and he sounded very impressive. He acknowledged that he should have reported the phone calls from Wilson and Domenici to the DoJ sooner, but his candor and his explanation ("I was shocked by the whole thing") sounded human.

There's no way Domenici runs for re-election, I'm predicting it now. He would have had a problem even before this mess, what with all the "I wear pajamas and roam the halls of the Senate aimlessly" stuff.

Josh Marshall is right, we now know that Wilson and Domenici were the first people frustrated with Iglesias, and we know that the Justice Department eventually fired him. Who were the middle men? Who talked to who?

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