That scene came to mind again recently when we read the latest news about Mark Fuller, the federal judge in charge of the Don Siegelman case. The Montgomery-based judge wants another judge to determine if Fuller should recuse himself--even though the record is filled with evidence that Fuller never should have been on the case in the first place.
What would Dean Wormer tell Mark Fuller? "Corrupt, gutless, lazy, and whiny is no way to go through life, son."
But that's the way Mark Fuller is, and he shows no sign of changing.
It's been apparent for a long time that Fuller is corrupt. The rampant errors in the Siegelman case prove it. John Caylor, a veteran investigator and journalist in Alabama and north Florida, has called for Fuller's impeachment. Caylor knows the territory from growing up with Fuller in Enterprise, Alabama. Here's how we reported it in an earlier post:
"Mark Fuller is dirty," Caylor says. "I personally know he is dirty. Moreover, I know the whole damn bunch associated with him."
How does Caylor know? It's partly because of his own family ties to the Dixie Mafia. Caylor's father was police chief in Enterprise, a welcoming figure for mobsters looking for a new home after being kicked out of Phenix City. Fuller's father was a state district attorney in Enterprise.
Fuller, Caylor says, has held a longstanding grudge against Siegelman and railroaded the former governor as part of a sweeping effort by the George W. Bush administration to prosecute prominent Democrats. Caylor once lived near Karl Rove in north Florida, and says the former White House strategist directed the scheme to target Siegelman and others.
So we've established the corrupt part. What about gutless? Under 28 U.S. Code 455, it is abundantly clear that Fuller has a duty to recuse himself--on multiple grounds. The law says a judge "shall disqualify himself . . . . " In other words, Fuller has an obligation under the law to act, but he is shoving it off on another judge.
As for lazy, codefendant Richard Scrushy filed the motion to recuse on June 26, 2009, and Siegelman joined it last October. So Fuller has been sitting on the motion for almost a year, and is only acting now because Scrushy recently filed a motion that said, in so many words, "Get off your ass and do your job!"
As for whiny, get this from Fuller's latest memorandum opinion:
The Court has taken no particular pleasure in presiding over this matter. Nonetheless, it has not been an unbearable burden either. Should the judge to whom the instant motion to recuse is referred decide that the Court need not disqualify itself, then there will be a further duty for this Court to perform in this case, and the Court will, as it must, perform that duty conscientiously.Well, doesn't that ease your mind? Presiding over the Siegelman case has not been an "unbearable burden" for Fuller. Sure nice to know that the case is all about him. Also nice to know that a federal judge isn't burdened by the fact that his corrupt actions have caused two innocent men to go to prison.
It's also clear, from this statement, that Fuller intends to stay on the case--in spite of what the law says--unless another judge forces him off.
Mark Fuller: What a waste of carbon. This guy makes Kent Dorfman look like one of life's winners. You can check out Fuller's latest handiwork below: