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Monday, September 19, 2005

Judith Miller Gets the Lawyer She Deserves

Well, the laughably incompetent Floyd Abrams is not counting on his superlative legal skills to get his client Judith Miller out of jail any time soon, it seems:
Although Miller is due to be released when the federal grand jury closes its investigation of the case on Oct. 28, special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald could seek an extension or ask that a new grand jury be convened.

"The prosecutor in open court talked about the possibility of convening a new grand jury," Abrams told E&P Monday, referring to the original sentencing hearing. When Miller was put behind bars on July 6, the sentence was for 18 months or until the grand jury ends its investigation.
Did he really think Fitzgerald was just going to shrug, throw up his hands and say "well, nice try" at the end of October? Watch his two year investigation circle the drain because Judy's a heck of a broad and Tom Brokaw thinks she should go free?
"The sentence imposed by the judge would end on the 28th," Abrams said. "We're hoping that it will end then. I am just not going to go beyond that."
Fitzgerald can either extend the present grand jury, convene a new one, or just say screw it and go snorkling in Aruba. Floyd Abrams must be the only person in the world who actually thinks Door #3 is a realistic option.
Abrams would not comment on previous reports of plea negotiations being done on Miller's behalf, but said he had not spoken with the prosecutor about Miller.
Because as Arianna reported recently, the NYT finally decided to get some realistic legal advice and are no longer relying on dithering idiots like Abrams to salvage what meager hope of any future journalistic credibility they might once again lay claim to.

So Abrams must earn his fat fee by pimping the myth of the Bleeding Martyr:
"She's about the same, It's a difficult situation," Abrams said of her condition. "She's doing the best she can in a very difficult situation."
Oh, wait...there's a tissue here somewhere. Methinks I must daub my weeping eyes.

Or I could just offer a few keystrokes in support of an LTE at Editor and Publisher this morning:
Maybe you should save your pity for the too-many journalists who have died in Iraq....For her publicizing disingenuous lies and disastrous disinformation in The New York Times and for her help in ginning up the war fever in America, she merits a plaque on the wall of Journalism's Hall of Shame.
I feel pretty safe in predicting that if Judy can't fashion some new self-starring drama whereby she heroically rats out her sources in the coming weeks, Fitzgerald will unleash unholy hell on her, the Times and anyone else who impedes his investigation. Even Times Editor Bill Keller has turned apostate, acknowledging both that a) journalistic privilege is not absolute, and b) he's on thin fucking ice.

Fireworks a-coming, kids. Stay tuned.

PS: In the coming weeks I'm going to be doing a series on Fitzgerald for the Huffington Post. So if anyone has any great contacts within the Justice Department or folks who may know him, please email me.