News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


Justice’s e-mails made available to the public

The opening sentence of an Associated Press article transmitted for newspapers Monday read:

“WASHINGTON (AP) —Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ hold on his job grew more uncertain Monday as the Justice Department released e-mails with new details about the firings of federal prosecutors.”

“The e-mails delivered Monday to Congress spell out some of the reasons behind the ouster of the eight fired prosecutors and reveal in some cases the heavy-handed manner in which the firings were carried out,” the article also said.

E-mails released Monday followed some 3,000 pages of e-mails and other documents the House and Senate judiciary committees received Wednesday night.

But, you might say, those were released to Congress and not to the local newspaper.

The article continues with, “The House panel posted many of them (e-mails) on its Web site, in addition to those released publicly by Justice Department.”

The Daily continues to attempt to get e-mail headers from Sheriff Greg Bartlett.

Congress apparently isn’t afraid of Justice Department e-mails aiding terrorists as Sheriff Bartlett says might happen if the public sees e-mails of his department.

Congress also isn’t afraid that releasing e-mails will result in inefficient government, as local Circuit Judge Steve Haddock suggested might be the case last week at a hearing over courthouse e-mails.

Conversely, release of the e-mails is helping Congress get to the bottom of why the attorney general fired the eight prosecutors. And to get to the bottom of inappropriate e-mails on county computer servers is what The Daily is attempting to do.

If the country can survive release of Justice Department e-mails, it can survive the public seeing what’s on the servers at the courthouse and the County Jail.

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