The U.S Attorney hiring and firing scandal took an important twist today, with the Office of the Inspector General issuing a report that found that Republican National Committee lawyer, White House liason to the DOJ, and Alberto Gonzales aide Monica Goodling systematically screened candidates for positions at the DOJ for their political leanings, effectively trying to turn the DOJ into a Republicans-only club. This included screening for political appointees as well as non-political appointees, like immigration judges. You can read the report here. How very illegal of you, Ms. Goodling.
While this is a concrete demonstration of how bad things got at the DOJ under Gonzales, and certainly a blow for the lame-duck Bush Administration, I think the Administration and Gonzales lost this one in the Court of Public Opinion a long, long time ago. Their denials didn't pass the straight face test, as my former Tax prof would say.
But the most surprising thing about this, if anything can surprise you with these folks nowadays, is how outrightly obvious these people were. Part of Goodling's approach would be to interview everyone, necessary or not. In the interviews, the Inspector General report says she'd ask questions so obviously political, right down to the "why are you proud to be a Republican" question, that it's shocking that her cover wasn't blown until now.
So, my immediate question to you is this: were the Democrats completely inept here, or complicit? Discussion in the comments thread.