EMAIL PAGE THREE
COLUMN SEVENTY-THREE, JULY 1, 2002
(Copyright © 2002 The Blacklisted Journalist)
G.O.P. JUDGE NIXES INVESTIGATION OF INSPECTOR SHITHOUND, THE KENNEL STARR
FW: L[ittle] R[ock] federal judges wanted Kenneth Starr investigated
Date: Fri, 3 May 2002 21:51:24 -0700
From: "venire" <email@example.com>
Rock federal judges wanted Kenneth Starr investigated
Their request, and its denial, have been kept secret.
1999, Francis Mandanici requested an investigation of Independent Counsel
Kenneth Starr for possible conflict of interest and other improprieties in the
Whitewater investigation. Federal Judge John F. Nangle of St. Louis -- a staunch
Republican, like Starr -- not only denied the request in 2000, he derided
Mandanici mercilessly, saying Mandanici's allegations were "nonsense"
and "ridiculous," and he threatened disciplinary action against
Mandanici, not Starr.
Nangle did not say, and what was not revealed to the public until this month,
was that six federal judges in Little Rock, Democrats and Republicans, also had
asked for an investigation of Starr, and Nangle denied their request too. Nangle
put the judges' request for an investigation of Starr, and his denial of the
request, "under seal," meaning the proceedings were unknown to the
public. Unknown, that is, until March 6, 2002, when Robert Ray, Starr's
successor as independent counsel, issued a public report that mentioned the
judges' seeking an investigation of Starr, and Nangle's rebuff. The files
themselves are still sealed, so it's not known if Nangle used the same
intemperate language on the district judges as he did on lawyer Mandanici.
to Ray's report, the Little Rock judges specifically asked for the appointment
of a special prosecutor "to investigate whether any person improperly
sought to have Judge Henry Woods removed from the trial of the then sitting
Governor of Arkansas Jim Guy Tucker." Starr asked for and got Woods'
removal from the Tucker case. The judges apparently later amended the request to
include matters raised by Mandanici, a Connecticut public defender and Starr
critic who accused Starr of eliciting false testimony and other wrongdoing,
including a conflict of interest in Starr's dealings with Richard Mellon Scaife,
a right-wing multimillionaire in Pennsylvania who financed anti-Clinton
Little Rock judges -- Woods, William R. Wilson Jr. and James M. Moody, all
Democratic appointees -- alleged specific wrongdoing, according to Ray. Two
Republican appointees, Chief Judge Susan Webber Wright and Stephen M. Reasoner,
filed a separate petition concurring in the request for an investigation of
Starr's office but "expressing their reluctance to join in the majority's
specific allegations of misconduct." Judge George Howard Jr., a Democratic
appointee, recused from the matter entirely. Ray's report is not entirely clear
on this point, but apparently the other Little Rock district judge, G. Thomas
said Nangle found that "there is absolutely no basis for the motion of the
Eastern District Court judges" for an investigation of Starr's office.
Nangle had been appointed by the chief judge of the Eighth Circuit Court of
Appeals at St. Louis to hear complaints against Starr. Before he was named
independent counsel, Starr had been solicitor general under the first President
Bush, whom Clinton defeated. Before he was appointed judge, Nangle was a member
of the Republican National Committee and had been named "Mr.
Republican" in Missouri.
Nangle's denial of their request, the Little Rock judges' action may have had an
effect, anyway. In 1999, while the request for an investigation was hanging over
him, Starr resigned as independent counsel.
said this week that he would probably file a motion seeking release of the
judges' petition for an investigation and Nangle's denial of the petition.
"Certainly it could have affected the presidential election if the public
knew that prior to that very close election at least five federal judges had
filed a grievance against Starr's office that possibly could have affected his
decision to resign rather than possibly becoming a liability for the Republican
cause if the scandal broke," Mandanici said. "The single judge who
decided the matter had released his decision concerning my grievance and he also
should have released his decision concerning the grievance filed by the
had been appointed originally to investigate real estate dealings involving Jim
McDougal and Bill and Hillary Clinton, but he kept expanding his jurisdiction,
including bringing charges against Tucker, an old political rival of Clinton's;
McDougal and McDougal's ex-wife, Susan. The Clintons were not parties to the
case. In 1995, Woods threw out the indictment of Tucker and the McDougals,
saying it was unrelated to Starr's assignment to investigate Clinton's business
he had not asked Woods to recuse from the case, Starr asked the Eighth Circuit
Court of Appeals to overrule Woods and remove him from the case. Starr alleged
"the appearance of a conflict of interest" by Woods. He submitted
newspaper and magazine articles reflecting that Woods knew the Clintons and that
he'd been active in Democratic politics before he was a judge. A three-judge
panel of the Eighth Circuit, all conservative Republican appointees, cited an
article from Vanity Fair magazine in reversing Woods and removing him from the
case. Judge Howard tried the case instead. Tucker and the McDougals were
convicted of fraud.
Woods said that he was the first judge in the history of Anglo-American
jurisprudence to be removed from a case because of "newspaper accounts,
magazine articles and television transcripts." He acknowledged being
friends with the Clintons, but said he didn't understand what the Clintons had
to do with the Tucker-McDougal case.
Woods, who died March 14, was left with only a slight scar from the Whitewater
terror. Many innocent victims suffered worse.
Copyright (c)2002 Arkansas Times Inc. ##
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