I've been speculating all week on whether there was a connection bewteen Paul McNulty's resignation on Monday--from the USA meeting in San Antonio, TX--and Jim Comey's testimony on Tuesday. Add at least one more event into the equation, a contentious meeting between Gonzales and the USAs on Wednesday.
At an executive session Wednesday during the Justice Department's annual U.S. attorneys conference, Gonzales met with most of the nation's 93 U.S. attorneys to apologize for the controversy over the firings of nine prosecutors last year and to attempt to shore up sagging morale.
More than a dozen U.S. attorneys spoke during the morning session, most of them expressing concern to Gonzales about the scandal's impact on their own offices and the overall image of the department, several participants said.
"People were very plainspoken," said one U.S. attorney, who along with others interviewed spoke on the condition of anonymity because the session was private. "The overwhelming majority of the comments were about the controversy and how people are still not happy in the way things were going."
So let me get this straight. On Monday, McNulty resigns from San Antonio. At first, Gonzales issues a really sweet statement celebrating McNulty. But by the following morning at the National Press Club, Gonzales blames McNulty for everything. Only to have his actions in the "hospital meeting" finally exposed by Comey, that same morning. The day after Comey's testimony, Gonzales gets an earful from the USAs he has put through this mess. On Thursday, the WaPo reports that 26 USAs were targeted for firing and then McClatchy says the number was really 30. And on Friday, Gonzales' closest ally on the Democratic side calls for his resignation (possibly after meeting him face to face).
You get the feeling a few people want Gonzales gone? And yet, Gonzales is still the Attorney General.