The prosecutors who tried to railroad Republican Senator Ted Stevens will now be investigated by order of the presiding federal judge, who said, “In nearly 25 years on the bench, I have never seen anything approaching the mishandling and misconduct that I have seen in this case.” Like disgraced Duke lacrosse prosecutor Mike Nifong, they could eventually go to jail.
What really needs to be investigated is this: were these Justice Department prosecutors “merely” overzealous, or were they acting for the Democratic Party, trying to drive Stevens out of public life so that the Democrats could increase their majority in the Senate? If that was their objective, they succeeded.
Since he became Attorney General, Eric Holder has moved to politicize the Department, putting it in service of a left-wing agenda. But there is no reason why the Democrats’ misuse of Justice could not have begun when the Department was nominally under Republican control. It ultimately proved that the Duke prosecution arose out of a Democratic official’s hope of partisan political gain. Were the Stevens prosecution, and the misconduct that it engendered, similarly motivated? That is the question that investigators need to get to the bottom of.