Thursday, April 12, 2007

Attorney Purge - the LiNX Angle

Yesterday, Florida Senator Bill Nelson (D) sent a letter to Paul McNulty at the DOJ questioning the department's commitment on the LiNX program that requires shared information about crime and terrorism between federal, regional and local law enforcement agencies. He also wonders whether it plays a factor in the US Attorney purge.

One of the things that has surfaced recently was a letter sent to the DOJ by fired US Attorney Jim McKay.

McKay had sent a four-page letter to McNulty on Aug. 31 regarding the LInX
system. The letter, which was co-signed by 16 other U.S. Attorneys, strongly
called for the Justice Department to overcome delays in approving funding for
LInX, and in cementing partnerships with the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security.
Interesting to note that 3 of the 17 are among the 8 "purged" and at least one other, Tampa area US Attorney Paul Perez, has quit. If the letter was not a primary reason for his termination, you can bet it was another nail in his coffin.
The letter inspired a sharp response from Justice Department official Mark Connor in an e-mail to Michael Elston and Michael Scudder, who worked for McNulty. "I believe McKay is way out of line here," Connor wrote. "I don't know what McKay's motives are, but this is embarrassing and outrageous."

Initial news reports and McKay himself denied that this had anything to do with his termination but clearly Senator Nelson thinks something is up.

More later.