Bush New England chair quits in phone-jamming scandal

More evidence of the willingness of the leadership of God’s Official Party to interfere with the elections process.

The Bush regional campaign chair for New England says he didn’t do anything wrong in connection with the jamming of Democrats’ phone lines in the 2002 New Hampshire Senate race narrowly won by John Sununu, but he’s quitting anyway, just for the hell of it.

Meantime, the U.S. Department of Justice has asked the New Hampshire courts to keep the Democrats from getting depositions from the people involved, because it might compromise matters now before a federal grand jury. Two Republican officials have already pleaded guilty and apparently are providing testimony in return for leniency. According to Josh Marshall, quoting his own sources and the Manchester Union-Leader, one of the co-conspirators they named is James Tobin, the man who just quit. Josh also points out that

Note that, if the Democrats were barking up the wrong tree in charging top Republican officials with complicity in the illegal jamming, there would be no basis for the DoJ motion. You can’t reveal what the Grand Jury is learning unless the Grand Jury is actually learning something about the subject of your inquiry. So the DoJ motion confirms Marshall’s story.

No doubt the indictments of Republican higher-ups, like those of the top Administration officials who revealed Valerie Plame’s identity as an undercover CIA officer, will be handed up sometime after November 2.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com