|Dana and Don Siegelman|
Dana Siegelman, the daughter of Alabama's former governor, approached Karl Rove this week at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. Showing Rove more politeness than he deserved, Ms. Siegelman introduced herself and tried to ask if there is anything Rove could do to help her father. After all, Don Siegelman is due to report to federal custody next Tuesday as the victim of perhaps the most notorious political prosecution in American history.
Did Karl Rove care about the human costs of gross injustice? Not on your life. What did Dana Siegelman get for her trouble? An epic lesson in Republican rudeness.
The TYT Network interviewed Dana Siegelman about her brief experience in Rove's orbit, and you can view the full video at the end of this post. If you ever have asked yourself, "Just how big a jackass is Karl Rove?" Dana Siegelman provides the answer with the following words:
I had no idea that Karl Rove would dare step in this building. And when I found out this morning that he was here, I sort of felt . . . I need to meet this person and let him know what he's done to my family.
He didn't give me that opportunity. Instead, as soon as I introduced myself, which I thought I did very politely--"Sir, Don Siegelman's daughter, I just wanted to meet you and say . . . --he cut me off right away and started shaking his finger in my face: "Tell your dad not to use my name to make money," which Dad obviously isn't . . . so I thought, "OK, buddy, I don't know if you're quite with it."
He certainly knew who Don Siegelman was, and he certainly was angry to know that I was his daughter. I didn't get to ask him what I wanted to ask him, which was, "At this point, is there any way you feel you could help us?" Make him feel important, let him know that I'm not trying to attack him. But also let him know that I think he can do something. He knows the people behind my dad's case, he pulled a lot of strings. . . . He could, if he wanted to, right this wrong--and do it for the country and all the people that were politically prosecuted.
I don't know if meeting him will have any effect. I don't know if it will touch him where it should.
Bottom line? Dana Siegelman tried to interact with Karl Rove in a human way, as one person to another. And she didn't have much luck, probably because Rove is more jackass than human.
The Dana Siegelman interview hit home to me on multiple levels. As she noted, the corruption of our justice system under Karl Rove and others in the George W. Bush administration goes way beyond her father. It goes to Paul Minor, Wes Teel, and John Whitfield, who were unlawfully prosecuted in Mississippi in a case that I call a "bookend" for the Siegelman debacle.
For that matter, it goes right here to the Schnauzer household, where both my wife and I have been cheated out of our jobs because I chose to start a blog and write truthfully about judicial corruption in our state and beyond, including the Siegelman case.
In fact, I am being cheated at this very moment in my wrongful termination lawsuit against the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). My case is before the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, and it is being heard by two of the same justices--Gerald Bard Tjoflat and J.L. Edmondson--who unlawfully upheld convictions in the Siegelman case.
They appear set to uphold the violation of black-letter law by the trial court in Birmingham, which granted summary judgment to the university without giving me an opportunity to conduct any discovery. My lawsuit alleges what tape-recorded evidence clearly proves--that I was fired because of the content on my blog about the Siegelman case--and I repeatedly have criticized Tjoflat and Edmondson, on my blog and some half dozen national Web sites, for their bogus ruling in U.S. v. Siegelman.
So what happens? They wind up on the three-judge panel that is hearing the appeal in my employment lawsuit. The well-known standard for recusal is the following: Could a judge's impartiality reasonably be questioned? By that standard, Tjoflat and Edmondson clearly should never have sat on my panel, and I have filed a motion for them to recuse.
In the past two days, I've written about the latest in my case at the following posts:
* Here's How I Got Screwed By the Same Appellate Court In Atlanta That Cheated Don Siegelman;
* How Did the Same Judges from the Siegelman Case Wind Up On the Appeal of My Lawsuit Against UAB?
Will Tjoflat and Edmondson follow the law and step down? I doubt it. Will the same judges who cheated Don Siegelman continue to cheat me? I imagine so.
That's the system that Karl Rove has given us. And Dana Siegelman makes an eloquent statement about the harm that Rove and others have inflicted on our democracy.