ITEM: On January 17, 1998, the Monica Lewinsky story broke on the Drudge Report. Exactly ten years ago today.
ITEM: Willamette Week broke the news yesterday: Senator Gordon Smith will nominate Karin Immergut, the U.S. Attorney for Oregon, to the federal bench - to the seat currently held by Judge Garr King (an excellent jurist with a strong record, originally nominated by Senator Wyden and appointed by President Clinton.)
In the last year of the Bush Administration, Senator Smith is trying to sneak in one last federal judge. As usual, he'd like us to think it's a nice, uncontroversial pick.
Not a chance.
And Monica Lewinsky is about to get back in the news.
Eight sources—many of whom declined to speak on the record—said Immergut is the favorite of U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith, who as Oregon’s Republican senator will make the key recommendation to the Republican White House on whom to nominate. ...
But in today’s charged political climate, Immergut could face stiff opposition from U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and powerful members of Congress because of several pieces of baggage she brings—including work she did 10 years ago as a team member on Special Prosecutor Ken Starr’s investigation of President Clinton’s sexual foibles. ...
It was Immergut who personally questioned Monica Lewinsky in an Aug. 6, 1998, deposition, famously asking whether the president was wearing pants when he received oral sex.
It's worth noting that Immergut doesn't include the Ken Starr gig on her official biography. What's she hiding? Is she not proud of the work she did solving the mystery of a presidential blow job? Spending millions of taxpayer dollars interrogating Monica about the blue dress?
But the past is the past. Let's talk about the present. Here's my questions:
- Karin Immergut was a Democrat when she left Portland to work for Ken Starr. After that gig, she became a Republican in order to become a U.S. Attorney under George W. Bush. Strangely, she wasn't among the U.S. Attorneys that got fired by Alberto Gonzales. What did Karin Immergut do to avoid getting fired along with all the others that refused to kowtow to Karl Rove?
- Karin Immergut is clearly an aggressive climber of the career ladder. That's fine, so are lots of people. But if she's willing to change political parties, work for Ken Starr, and bow and scrape to Karl Rove in order to rise up through the ranks... what would Immergut be willing to do to move up from federal District Court judge to federal Court of Appeals judge? After all, the only way judges move up through those ranks is to do the bidding of the right-wing of the Republican party.
I don't trust Karin Immergut. And neither should you.
And the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee need to pay attention to this one. Don't let Gordon Smith sneak a bad judge through in the last year of President Bush's term (and the last year of Smith's Senate career, too.)