Tag Archives: FBI

Independent probe needed in Rice case

The case of Ray Rice is getting serious.

The former Baltimore Ravens running back who hit his fiancée — who’s now his wife — is out of a job after knocking his wife unconscious in a New Jersey casino elevator.


But it’s getting complicated now.

National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell said he didn’t see the video of Rice smashing his wife in the face until just the other day. The Associated Press reports that the league office got the video in April, two months after the incident.

The question: Did the commissioner cover up what he knew and when he knew it?

That’s where former FBI director Robert Mueller comes in. He’s going to conduct (presumably) a thorough, independent investigation of what happened. He’ll report back to the NFL and to the public.

At issue is whether the NFL sought to whitewash this case to protect its image. If it turns out Goodell knew far earlier than what he’s acknowledged, he ought to be fired summarily.

The bigger issue, of course, is how the organization is going to handle domestic violence cases involving its employees in the future. Rice initially got a two-game “suspension.” Then the video showing him punching his wife came out. The league suspended Rice indefinitely and the Ravens fired him from the team.

Robert Mueller needs to get to the bottom of this case and he needs to follow every lead he gets to get to the truth — and to who knew what and when they knew it.

Nixon quit, saved the country

Why not put a positive spin on what at the time seemed to many Americans like a dark moment in U.S. history?

Forty years today, President Richard Nixon announced his resignation from office.

How is that a positive development? He saved the country from certain impeachment.


Still, I saw a poll the other day that suggests that more than half of Americans today see the Watergate scandal as just an example of politics as usual.

Those of us who remember that time recall something quite different. President Nixon committed egregious crimes against the Constitution, such as when he ordered federal spooks to cease and desist in their probe of that June 1972 burglary of the Democratic National Committee office at the Watergate building.

He lied to the country. He sought to cover up an event described early on as a “third-rate burglary.” Nixon sought to bring the power of his office to bear while hiding what happened.

If that isn’t abuse of power, then the term has no meaning at all.

I was a newly married college student when the crap hit the fan in 1973-74. I didn’t want the country to go forward with impeachment. Americans knew the stakes. But when the House Judiciary Committee approved articles of impeachment, it became clear to the president he was toast.

He quit his office. In the process the 37th president well might have helped rescue the nation from untold grief.

Time passes. Attitudes have changed, I suppose. The poll I saw, however, must not mean Americans have relegated a serious constitutional crisis to what they now see as just another game of political hardball.

It was a whole lot worse than that.

Let the FBI join the VA probe

U.S. John Cornyn has it right: It’s time to deploy the Federal Bureau of Investigation in this still-metastasizing scandal at the Department of Veterans Affairs.


Cornyn, R-Texas, wants the FBI to begin looking into whether there are criminal charges to be brought against VA staffers complicit in the deaths of veterans waiting too long for health care from an agency charged with caring for them.

VA Secretary Eric Shinseki has quit. The president of the United States has declared his anger over the treatment of veterans. How about calling your pal, the attorney general, Mr. President, and telling him to order the FBI to look at this matter?

This scandal is huge … and yes, it deserves the “scandal” label while most of the other stuff doesn’t rise to that level of deserved outrage.

Dallas Morning News blogger/editorial writer Mike Hashimoto hits it out of the park with this assertion: “Yes, Shinseki had to go, and there’s a long list of VA administrators at three dozen or more hospitals who should join him. And it was beyond shameful that some of them profited from the scheme in the form of undeserved bonus payments. I’m no legal expert, but doesn’t it seem as if some law was broken here? And, if so, don’t we need a criminal investigation?”

In my mind, yes … absolutely.