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April 21, 2005

What's going on at DOJ?

I wondered in this post about when and how we will hear from the Justice Department concerning the Booker fix provisions of H.R. 1528 (basics here, commentary here and here and here).  But now that I see this news that Deputy US Attorney General James Comey, the No. 2 person at the Department, has resigned, I am wondering more broadly about what is going on at DOJ.

Orin Kerr notes here that Comey "was highly respected among the career lawyers at DOJ" and calls his departure "a loss for the Department."  And Comey's resignation comes on the heels of the recent transition of the head of DOJ's Criminal Division (from Chris Wray to Alice Fisher, as detailed here). 

I am inclined to joke that all these developments are more fall-out from Blakely and Booker, though I am sure federal sentencing is only a small part of these stories.  Nevertheless, it raises questions about who is developing DOJ sentencing policies at a time when a lot of strategic choices need to be made by the Department.

April 21, 2005 at 09:49 AM | Permalink

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Comments

John Bolton probably.

Posted by: David in NY | Apr 21, 2005 10:35:57 AM

More seriously, there seems to be no place in the DOJ for someone who says, in the linked article above, "I don't care about politics. I don't care about expediency. I care about doing the right thing."

Posted by: David in NY | Apr 21, 2005 10:38:58 AM

I can bet that James Comey has not been sitting at his desk drafting post Booker language. But having an actual respected DOJ attorney as part of the process is great. Thus, Comeys departure could leave a void to put a check on DOJ attorneys that have never seen a courtroom except during their clekships.

Posted by: nick | Apr 21, 2005 11:00:28 AM

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