Posts Tagged ‘Karl Rove’
Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Former interim U.S. Attorney Tim Griffin, now a Republican candidate for Congress in central Arkansas, told the Associated Press that he respects the Justice Department’s decision not to file charges in connection with the Bush administration’s firing of U.S. Attorneys.

Tim Griffin (Tim Griffin for Congress)

Justice Department officials said Wednesday that Assistant U.S. Attorney Nora Dannehy has concluded that no criminal charges are warranted in connection with the 2006 dismissals.

“There were a lot of political games being played and I think it could have been handled much better,” Griffin said in an interview with the AP. “I’m talking about jobs and spending and all of the things Arkansans I talk with are interested in. If other people want to talk about it, that’s fine. That’s their right… As far as this story goes, I think it speaks for itself.”

Griffin had replaced former U.S. Attorney for Eastern Arkansas Bud Cummins, who was forced out by the Bush administration. At the time of his appointment, Griffin was an aide to Karl Rove.

Sarah Palin had singled out Griffin as one of the “good candidates” running in Arkansas this year.

The probe did not focused on Griffin’s hiring, instead centering on the firing of New Mexico U.S. Attorney David Iglesias. Dannehy also was tasked with determining whether White House or DOJ officials made false statements to Congress or to the Justice Department’s Inspector General and Office of Professional Responsibility, which also investigated the dismissals.

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Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

David Iglesias, the former U.S. Attorney for New Mexico who was dismissed in the U.S. attorney firings in 2006, shot back at former White House adviser Karl Rove Tuesday, calling the former Bush official’s allegations “a complete fabrication,” reported the Washington Independent.

In his memoir “Courage and Consequences” released Tuesday by Simon and Schuster, Rove said he did not put Iglesias’ name on the DOJ firing list. But Rove did cop to forwarding three complaints about Iglesias to the Justice Department. The complaints alleged that Iglesias of failed to investigate claims of voter fraud in Albuquerque after the 2004 election, “bungled” a high-profile corruption case involving state treasurers and that he declined to file an indictment against several prominent state Democrats allegedly involved in a kickback scheme until after the November 2006 election.

Iglesias took issue with Rove’s assertion that he “bungled” the corruption investigation, noting state treasurer Michael Montoya plead guilty and he won a conviction against a second treasurer, Robert Vigil.

But Iglesias saved his most harsh criticism for Rove’s description of the kickback scheme, which involved construction contracts for a courthouse in Bernalillo County.

“That’s a complete fabrication,” Iglesias told the Independent. “That indictment didn’t get filed until three weeks after I left office — in March 2007. Look, here’s where Rove’s lack of knowledge of DOJ policy hurts him factually. It’s standing policy that you can’t file an indictment right before an election if you think it will effect the outcome. But I’m sure Rove heard from local Republicans that I was intentionally keeping my powder dry.”

Iglesias also denied that he had planned to run for the Senate in 2006. Rove suggested in his memoir that the prosecutor held off on the indictment because he wanted to run for the Senate seat and needed the support of local Democrats.

Read Iglesias’ complete response at the Independent.

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Former White House adviser Karl Rove’s memoir Courage and Consequences was released Tuesday. Main Justice has a copy and will be blogging any interesting bits on the Justice Department.

In the new memoir, former White House adviser Karl Rove only briefly discusses the U.S. Attorney firings controversy and denies that the White House had anything more than a peripheral involvement in the selection of which attorneys got the ax.

“Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and top aides removed the attorneys after a two-year review of all U.S. Attorneys that began after the 2004 election,” Rove wrote. “They made the decision because the attorneys were not performing well or were going to leave anyway, not because they were disloyal to the Republican Party. No one at the White House compiled a list of U.S. attorneys to be removed or ordered the Justice Department to add a name to the list.”

In 2006, the White House dismissed seven U.S. attorneys. Soon after, congressional Democrats began an investigation of the firings, alleging that some of the removals were politically motivated. Gonzales and several of his top aides at the Justice Department ultimately resigned. But Rove devotes only four pages out of the 520-page book to the scandal.

(Simon & Schuster)

In the book, Rove acknowledges he forwarded three complaints about David Iglesias, then the U.S. Attorney for New Mexico, to the Justice Department. Rove said he heard complaints that Iglesias failed to investigate claims of voter fraud in Albuquerque after the 2004 election, that he bungled a high-profile corruption case involving state treasurers and that the attorney declined to file an indictment against several prominent state Democrats allegedly involved in a kickback scheme until after the November 2006 election.

Rove pointedly does not say who complained to him about Iglesias. (Allen Weh, the former chairman of the New Mexico Republican Party, has said publicly that he complained to Rove about the New Mexico U.S. Attorney.) But Rove does take Iglesias to task himself, alleging that the prosecutor was interested in running for the U.S. Senate and might have been looking to curry favor with local Democrats.

“I could understand not issuing a politically charged indictment a few days before the election,” Rove said. “The timing of Judge Walsh’s indictment of former Reagan Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger just days before the 1992 presidential election was egregious. But sitting on an indictment for nine to twelve months, allegedly because of political considerations, seemed inappropriate.”

Rove also defended himself for passing along the complaints about Iglesias.

“My responsibility was to pass on such complaints to appropriate officials,” Rove wrote. “Even so, the Bush White House was not like the Clinton White House, where political director Rahm Emanuel was in weekly contact with Justice. We showed deference to the Justice Department’s special position: communications flowed through the White House Counsel’s office to the designated officials at Justice. So I passed the complaints on to the counsel’s office, which decided whether to send them on to Justice and raised to Attorney General Gonzales the question of the department’s policy on prosecuting voter fraud.”

Rove also saved some fire for the Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, whom he called “hyperpartisan and ultraliberal.” While investigating the firings, the panel sought testimony from White House counsel Harriet Miers and Rove. The White House declined to make them available, citing executive privilege. In response, the committee subpoenaed Miers and Rove in 2008. In March 2009, the Obama administration brokered a deal between Rove and the committee that would allow him to testify in a closed-door session. The former adviser eventually testified in two day-long sessions in July 2009.

In the memoir, Rove took a dig at California Democrat Adam Schiff, who was the chief interrogator during the sessions, saying “he was clearly not prepared.”

“The committee staff drew up questions, many of them duplicative, and Schiff appeared to be seeing them for the first time when he sat down,” Rove wrote. “There were long pauses as he silently read the questions before repeating them to me. At times, the questioning veered close to lunacy.”

One other pointed omission in Rove’s memoir — he makes no mention of his interview last year with Acting Connecticut U.S. Attorney Nora R. Dannehy. Then-Attorney General Michael Mukasey appointed Dannehy in September 2008 to investigate the U.S. attorney firings. The results of that investigation have not been made public.

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Monday, March 8th, 2010

Seems Karl Griffin is not to be.

Tim Griffin and his daughter Mary Katherine (Tim Griffin for Congress)

While the two were in the White House when George W. Bush was president, Tim Griffin, then an aide to Bush adviser Karl Rove, jokingly wrote in an e-mail to his boss: “Btw my wife is pregnant. We are thinking about naming him Karl. Lol.”

But the baby turned out to be a girl. Griffin and his wife Elizabeth named her Mary Katherine. (Possible alternative namesakes? — Mary Cheney, the second daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney; Republican strategist Mary Matalin; or Bush administration Transportation Secretary Mary Peters.)

Cut to 2010 and now the couple is expecting again. This time they know for sure it’s a boy. But it looks like Rove’s name won’t live on in the Griffin family.

“Thank you to all who have been asking, but Baby John is not here yet! I will keep you updated! We appreciate your thoughts and prayers,” Griffin tweeted Friday evening.

So which “John” in Griffin’s life could be more important than Karl Rove?

We at Main Justice have a few guesses — John Ashcroft? John McCain? John Roberts?

Griffin played a central role in the 2006 U.S. Attorney firings scandal. Congressional investigators found the White House had ousted Little Rock-based prosecutor Bud Cummins to make way for Griffin to take the plum federal prosecuting post. He served six controversial months before stepping down.

Griffin is now seeking the Republican nomination for Arkansas’ 2nd congressional district House seat.  His campaign did not return a request for comment.

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

Tim Griffin (Tim Griffin for Congress)

Republican Tim Griffin (R) is not only the clear frontrunner in his bid for Congress in public opinion polls but also in fundraising. Griffin, a former Bush administration official who was a key figure in the 2006 U.S. Attorney firings scandal, is one of four candidates seeking to replace Democratic Rep. Vic Snyder in Arkansas’ 2nd District. Snyder dropped his re-election bid earlier this month citing family concerns.

Griffin, who was a former assistant to Karl Rove in the White House under George W. Bush, was installed as the U.S. Attorney in Little Rock in December 2006 under a controversial provision of the Patriot Act that circumvented Senate confirmation. It later emerged in congressional testimony that Griffin’s predecessor, Bud Cummins, had been ousted in an apparent move to make way for Griffin. Griffin stepped down as U.S. Attorney in June 2007.

In the fourth quarter of 2009, Griffin raised $261,457.58 and ended the year with $316,535.42 cash on hand. As was the case earlier in his fund-raising effort, a number of Griffin’s donations came from Republican operatives who worked in the Bush administration or on one of President Bush’s campaigns.

Among Griffin’s donors are Alex Castellanos, a top media adviser to Bush’s 2004 campaign; Benjamin Ginsberg, a partner at Patton Boggs who was national counsel on both of Bush’s campaigns, Kenneth B. Mehlman, Bush’s campaign manager in 2004 and former chairman of the Republican National Committee; and Sara Taylor, who was the director of the White House Office of Political Affairs and deputy assistant to Bush. Taylor, who reported directly to Rove, also was involved in the 2006 dismissal of the U.S. Attorneys.

The one other Republican in the race — restaurant owner Scott Wallace — fell far behind Griffin in the fundraising race at the end of the fourth quarter. Health care project manager David Meeks earlier this week ended his bid for the Republican nomination. Other Republican candidates could emerge. CQPolitics rates the race as “leans Republican.”

Although Snyder didn’t drop out of the race until after the quarter was over, it appears he didn’t do any fundraising in the last quarter of 2009. During the quarter he raised $281.80 and ended the year with $4,182.01 cash on hand. Snyder historically had not been an aggressive fund-raiser early in the two-year election cycle.

The two Democrats now in the race — state Sen. Joyce Elliott and state House Speaker Robbie Wills — did not enter the race until the end of the fourth quarter fundraising period.

Several other Democrats have been mentioned as possible candidates, including Snyder’s chief of staff David Boling, former state Rep. Will Bond, state Sen. Shane Broadway, 2004 presidential candidate Wesley Clark, Lt. Gov. Bill Halter, North Little Rock Mayor Patrick Hays, state Senate President Pro Tempore Bob Johnson, state Sen. Mary Anne Salmon, state Senate Majority Leader Tracy Steele, Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola and state Public Service Commissioner Paul Suskie.

The filing deadline for party candidates is March 8. Both the Republican and Democratic primaries will take place May 18. If needed, a run-off will take place on June 8.

Among Griffin’s donors are:

  • Bryant Forrest Adams, a Republican political consultant and Griffin’s campaign manager — $250
  • Edwin Alderson, Jr., a former Union County Municipal Judge and a former Special Chief Justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court — $1,400
  • Jerald Barnett, chairman of Education America, Inc. — $2,400
  • Charles Basinger, an associate with Alston & Bird who previously served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps, in Baghdad and Mosul, Iraq, as well as Anchorage, Alaska — $25
  • Dominic C. Bellone, a Resident Program Director Governance-Iraq, International Republican Institute and a former producer at Hardball with Chris Matthews — $500
  • Elliot Berke, a former Capitol Hill staffer who once was counsel to the Speaker of the House and served as general counsel to the House Majority Leader — $500
  • Dan Blum, a research and communications consultant who previously was a senior research analyst at the Republican National Committee and a policy analyst at the Senate Republican Conference — $250
  • Tyler Boyd, a senior associate at Kearsarge Global Advisors who worked in the White House with former Vice President Richard Cheney and Republican political strategist Mary Matalin —$333.34
  • Sally Bradshaw, a Republican political consultant who has worked on the presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney and President George H.W. Bush, worked as then-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s (R) chief of staff and campaign manager and served as  associate director of political affairs in President George H.W. Bush’s White House — $500
  • Jason Braswell, an attorney at the Defense Department — $1,000
  • Reginald James Brown, a partner at Wilmer Hale who served as special assistant to the president and associate White House Counsel from 2003 to 2005 — $500
  • Suzie Browning, an accountant who once was Sen. Fred Thompson’s (R-Tenn.) controller — $250
  • Joseph Canizaro, a property developer who was a major Bush supporter and had close personal ties to the White House inner circle — $2,400
  • Stephen Carey, a former Hill staffer who served as legislative director for two members of the House Appropriations Committee and as a legislative assistant to the ranking member of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee — $500
  • Alex Castellanos, a top media adviser to Bush’s 2004 campaign — $250
  • Barbara Comstock, a partner at Corallo Comstock who worked in the Justice Department’s Office of Public Affairs under Attorney General John Ashcroft — $250
  • Mike Davis, was an Assistant Energy Secretary for Conservation and Renewable Energy under President George H.W. Bush — $800
  • Makan Delrahim, an attorney with Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP who was Deputy Assistant Attorney General for DOJ’s antitrust division under Bush, also served as a member of the Attorney General’s Task Force on Intellectual Property — $250
  • Ray C. Dillon, president, CEO and director of Deltic Timber Corporation — $2,000
  • Liam Donovan, a principal at Capitol Entertainment Group who also works on a Republican campaign committee — $250
  • Kelly Eichler, an attorney who worked in then-Ark. Gov. Mike Huckabee’s (R) administration — $1,250
  • Benjamin Ginsberg, a partner at Patton Boggs who was national counsel on both of Bush’s campaigns and Romney’s presidential campaign — $500
  • William Griffin, a partner at Sulgrave Partners who served in senior communications roles at the Treasury Department, three presidential campaigns and as a spokesman at the White House — $310
  • Kris Hammond, a DOJ attorney — $250
  • J. French Hill, Special Assistant to the President and Executive Secretary to the Economic Policy Council under President George H.W. Bush — $200
  • John S. Irving, Jr., a senior counselor at Holland & Knight who was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for nearly 10 years, also serving as counsel to two Deputy Attorneys General — $1,000
  • Jack Kalavritinos, the director of public policy at Covidien, Ltd who previously was the director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services, White House Liaison at the Labor Department and associate administrator of competitive sourcing at the Office of Management and Budget — $250
  • Dennis Kirk, associate general counsel at the U.S. Army — $252
  • Robert Lanford, who previously worked for the Republican Party of Arkansas — $250
  • Heather Larrison, deputy director of finance for Bush’s 2001 inauguration — $500
  • Danny Lopez-Diaz, Bush’s campaign spokesman in New Mexico — $250
  • Mitchell Lowe, an associate at Heidrick and Struggles who was White House Liaison at the Interior Department, Special Assistant to the Administrator at the Federal Highway Administration and Executive Director of Bush’s 2004 campaign in Arkansas — $250
  • Milam D. Mabry, a principal at Bracewell & Giuliani, LLP who previously worked on the Hill — $500
  • John Maher, a partner at  Duane Morris, LLP who previously was the General Counsel for the Office of Personnel Management and was a trial attorney with DOJ in Washington, D.C. — $500
  • J. Allen Martin, a partner at the Livingston Group who previously was chief of staff to Rep. Bob Livingston (R-La.) — $1,000
  • Kenneth B. Mehlman, the managing director and head of Global Public Affairs for Kohlberg Kravis Roberts who was Bush’s campaign manager in 2004 before serving as chairman of the Republican National Committee — $2,400
  • Robert Neil Miller, an associate at DLA Piper LLC who is a former staff member of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance — $250
  • Wade Murphy, a former special assistant and domestic communications director at U.S. Commercial Service who also was a volunteer coordinator during Bush’s 2004 campaign and an oil and gas policy adviser at the Energy Department — $500
  • Robert E. Murray, the CEO of Murray Energy Corporation who was a major Bush donor — $1,000
  • Holland Patterson, a vice president at McBee Strategic who previously served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as the Deputy White House Liaison and was a  Deputy Regional Political Director for the Republican National Committee during the 2004 presidential election — $250
  • Barry Rhoads, the CEO of  The Rhoads Group who previously was tax prosecutor at DOJ — $200
  • Job Serebrov, legal consultant at Serebrov Legal Consulting who previously was a senior counselor to the general counsel and senior adviser to the secretary of Agriculture — $2,000
  • Rachael Seidenschur Slobodien, the communications manager at the National Taxpayers Union, who previously was a press secretary on the Hill and served as a communications executive assistant at The Heritage Foundation — $300
  • Sara Taylor, a partner at Bluefront Group who was the director of the White House Office of Political Affairs and deputy assistant to Bush. — $1,000
  • Alexander Vogel, a partner at Mehlman & Vogel Inc. and previously chief counsel to then-Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) — $1,000
  • Andrew R. Wheeler, the minority staff director of the Senate Committee on Environmental & Public Works — $500
  • Liza Wright, Assistant to the President for Presidential Personnel and Director of Presidential Personnel in the Bush White House — $250
  • April Elizabeth-Anne Zentmeyer, a staff assistant in the Bush White House — $500

In the last quarter of 2009 Griffin also received contributions from political action committees. The donating PACs include:
Anadarko Petroleum Corporation PAC
Bancorp South Bank PAC
Civic Forum PAC
Conservative Opportunity Leadership And
Continuing A Majority PAC
Electrical Contractors PAC
Every Republican Is Crucial (Ericpac)
Iraq Veterans For Congress PAC
Murphy Oil Corporation PAC
Murray Energy Corporation PAC
National Petrochemical & Refiners Assoc
Occidental Petroleum Corporation PAC
People For Enterprise Trade And Economy
Southern Company Employees PAC
Stephens Inc. Federal PAC
Tesoro Petroleum Corporation PAC
Westmoreland For Congress

The campaign also relieved reimbursement for rent for the campaign office, which is located in Griffin’s law office in Little Rock.

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

Tim Griffin (Tim Griffin for Congress)

Tim Griffin, a central player in the 2006 U.S. Attorney firings scandal now running for Congress in Arkansas, has been advanced to “contender” status in the National Republican Congressional Committee’s “Young Guns” program, according to a press release.

Dave Weigel of the Washington Independent says that Democrats he’s spoken to in Arkansas “consider Rep. Vic Snyder (D-Ark.) their most vulnerable incumbent, but are licking their chops over the chance to attack Griffin’s record in government.”

A Nov. poll by Public Policy Polling found Griffin tied with his opponent for the Little Rock-based House seat.

The poll also found that Griffin had relatively low name recognition – which might be a good thing, suggesting that voters aren’t much aware that Griffin played a central role in the 2006 U.S. Attorney firings scandal. One of the ousted U.S. Attorneys, Bud Cummins in Arkansas’s Eastern District, was removed in an apparent attempt by the Bush White House to make room for Griffin, who at the time was an aide to Karl Rove.Griffin only served six controversial months before stepping down in June 2007.

President Barack Obama is unpopular in the district, with a 52 percent disapproval rating, the poll found. Displeasure with Democratic-led health care reform may also be rubbing off against Syder, the poll found.
Stephanie Woodrow contributed to this story.

Tuesday, November 17th, 2009

The Justice Department opposes an appeal from former Alabama Democratic Gov.Don Siegelman for the Supreme Court to reconsider his 2006 conviction on corruption charges, the Associated Press reported yesterday.

Don Siegelman (Gov)

Don Siegelman

Siegelman, who is out on bond pending his appeal, is asking the Supreme Court to review an earlier decision by a federal court in Alabama that let most of his conviction stand. Siegelman, who served as governor from 1999-2003, was sentenced in 2006 to seven years in a federal prison on bribery and mail fraud charges brought by Middle District of Alabama U.S. Attorney Leura Canary. Canary still serves in that post, as a holdover from the Bush administration, while the Obama administration works on getting its own nominee in place. Her then-counterpart in the Northern District of Alabama, Bush U.S. Attorney Alice Martin, also pursued charges against Siegelman, but was unsuccessful.

Members of Congress and 44 former state attorneys general have questioned the conviction, which many critics have claimed was the politically motivated work of then-Bush aide Karl Rove and other Republican officials. We reported last month that the Justice Department Office of Special Counsel found no evidence to support a whistleblower’s claims that the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Middle District of Alabama acted inappropriately in the prosecution of the former governor and his co-defendant, former HealthSouth Corp. CEO Richard Scrushy, who is serving a sentence of almost seven years arising from the 2006 conviction.

Siegelman and Scrushy have maintained their innocence. Their attorneys have argued that donations the health care business executive made to the then-governor’s lottery fund and Scrushy’s later appointment to the Alabama health board wasn’t criminal, just ordinary politics.

DOJ recommended that the Supreme Court not hear the appeal, court papers filed Friday night said, according to the AP.

“Under a standard that requires not just a quid pro quo, but one that is verbally spelled out with all ‘i’s dotted and ‘t’s crossed, all but the most careless public officials will be able to avoid criminal liability for exchanging official action for campaign contributions,” the DOJ argued, according to the AP.

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009

A prominent New Jersey Democrat is urging the Justice Department to investigate whether Chris Christie used the U.S. Attorney’s office to conduct his campaign for governor.

Frank Lautenberg (Gov)

Frank Lautenberg (Gov)

Sen. Frank Lautenberg said it was “shocking” that former New Jersey Assistant U.S. Attorney Michele Brown appeared to use her position to improperly help Christie’s campaign for governor, The Associated Press reported today.

The New York Times reported yesterday that the former Assistant U.S. Attorney was involved with processing a long-delayed Freedom of Information Act request filed by the Gov. Jon Corzine (D) campaign. The request included Brown’s travel records, which showed that Christie allowed Brown to stay at luxury hotels while on official travel.

Brown also argued for the arrests of public officials in a corruption sweep called Operation Bid Rig to occur before U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman took office, according to The Times. This was done “presumably so that Mr. Christie would be given credit for the roundup,” the newspaper said.

“It was particularly distressing that this raw political agenda came into an office with a historic reputation for fair and unbiased dispensation of justice, and Ms. Brown went so far as to try to bring political campaign objectives into the planning of law enforcement actions,” Lautenberg said in a statement.

Christie and Brown have denied the allegations.

Brown resigned in August shortly after Christie revealed that he gave a $46,000 loan to her.

Stephanie Woodrow contributed to this report.

Monday, October 19th, 2009
Tim Griffin (Facebook)

'80s Tim Griffin on Facebook

As he mounts a bid for Congress from Arkansas, Tim Griffin (R) is drawing campaign donations from his former colleagues in the Bush administration.

A one-time aide to White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, Griffin served as interim U.S. Attorney in Little Rock after Bud Cummins was fired in the 2006 U.S. Attorneys scandal. Now he’s running for the Republican nomination to challenge Rep. Vic Snyder (D-Ark.).

“I’m not going to distance myself from anything I’ve done. I’m very proud of my service,” Griffin said in an interview. “I’m just gonna put Tim Griffin out there.”

His third quarter Federal Election Commission report released last week showed A-list donors from the Republican establishment, including  Alex Castellanos, a top media adviser to Bush’s 2004 campaign; Mary Matalin, a Republican strategist who worked on President George H.W. Bush’s 1992 campaign and later for Vice President Dick Cheney; Mark McKinnon, a policy adviser and media consultant to Bush; and Travis Thomas, the national finance director of Bush’s 2004 campaign.

In addition, a sizable chuck of Griffin’s donations comes from the oil industry.

Griffin, meanwhile, has embraced new media in his campaign. He’s started Facebook and Twitter pages, and has also signed up with iContribute, a Web site that collects donations through the Internet. While Griffin’s Republican primary opponents are also Twittering, Griffin has out-raised them. He collected $130,000 in donations since announcing his candidacy Sept. 21, the report said. Griffin’s campaign spent $1,600 and had $129,000 cash on hand, according to the report. Twelve percent of his donations — or $15,800 —  came from oil producers.

Neither of Griffin’s GOP primary challengers — David Meeks and Scott Wallace — have filed a quarterly report. Meeks said his campaign was unable to file electronically due to “technical problems,” but said he raised $5,100 this quarter. Wallace launched his campaign after the end of the quarter. “I take my primary opponents very seriously,” Griffin told us. “I expect to have a vigorous primary.”

As for the incumbent, Snyder reported raising no money in the third quarter of this year. But he spent $4,700 and had $7,600 cash on hand. Said Griffin: ”It’s always an uphill battle against an incumbent. Congressman Snyder has been challenged a number of times and has won numerous times.” When asked if any Bush administration officials will be campaigning for him, Griffin said he will be making event and policy announcements in coming months.

Among Griffin’s donors are:

  • Bob Brooks, Vice President of the Alpine Group who was a lawyer for the Republican National Committee in 2000 and who in 2003 went on a golfing trip to St. Andrews in Scotland with Jack Abramoff - $2,400 
  • Joel Starr, a State Department attorney who was a speechwriter on President George H.W. Bush’s 1992 campaign — $4,800
  • Alex Castellanos, a Republican media strategist, a top media adviser to Bush’s 2004 campaign and a partner at National Media, Inc. — $1,000
  • Keith Crass, a Republican candidate for the Arkansas House of Representatives — $500
  • Ray C. Dillon, president, CEO and director of Deltic Timber Corporation — $1,000
  • James Dyke, a communications adviser to Bush and a former RNC communications director — $250
  • Kelly Eichler, an attorney who worked in then-Gov. Mike Huckabee’s (R) administration — $250
  • Adrian Gray, the National Voter Contact Director for Bush’s 2004 campaign — $500
  • William Asa Hutchinson III,  an associate solicitor in the Patent and Trademark Office and an attorney for the Commerce Department during the Bush administration. He is the son of Asa Hutchinson, a former House member from northwest Arkansas who served at the Department of Homeland Security in the Bush administration. Asa Hutchinson is also a former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas — $500
  • David Kustoff, a former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee who was appointed by Bush — $1,000
  • Mary Matalin, Republican strategist  - $250
  • Mark McKinnon, media consultant to Bush and Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign — $250
  • William C. Nolan, chairman of the board of Murphy Oil Corporation — $2,400
  • Mark Rayder, a Republican lobbyist and senior policy adviser at Alston & Bird - $500
  • Matthew Rhoades, the research director for Bush’s 2004 campaign and is a former research director/deputy communications director to the RNC — $1,000
  • Robin Roberts, president of National Media, Inc. and the media buyer for Bush’s 2000 campaign — $1,000
  • Natalie Rule, former director of public affairs for the Federal Emergency Management Agency under Bush, deputy communications director at the 2004 Republican National Convention and the spokeswoman for Bush’s inaugural committee in 2001 — $250.
  • Travis Thomas, the national finance director of Bush’s 2004 campaign — $250
  • Michael Zito, a former trial attorney at the Federal Trade Commission — $250
Monday, September 21st, 2009

A former Bush interim U.S. Attorney in Arkansas will file papers to run for Congress, The Associated Press reported today.

Tim Griffin (DOJ)

Tim Griffin (DOJ)

Tim Griffin, who was a key player in the U.S. Attorney firings scandal, is seeking the Republican nomination to challenge Rep. Vic Snyder (D) for his Little Rock-area House seat next year. He previously decided not to run for Senate against Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D).

He was appointed interim U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas in December 2006 by then-U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales following the dismissal of U.S. Attorney Bud Cummins.

Griffin resigned from the post after six months amid reports that his former boss, Bush White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, helped orchestrate Cummins’ firing to make way for Griffin. Read our report about Griffin’s relationship with Rove here.