The Attorney General's Lawyer: Inside the Meese Justice Department

By Douglas W. Kmiec | Go to book overview

major issue: placing limits on honoraria and outside income for members of Congress. The thinking that emerged from the White House was that since the President was also going to be asking Congress to significantly increase executive and judicial salaries, it was "prudent" to leave Congress' outside income problem for another day.

As it turned out, uniformity of treatment did carry the day--although not exactly in the manner anticipated by the public. All three branches got a substantial pay boost. While some of Bush's ethics reforms have been enacted into law, 53 it remains to be seen whether such reform results in more than the entrapment of the uninitiated and a mild challenge to the ingenuity of influence peddlers.


NOTES
1.
Memorandum to Douglas W. Kmiec from Arthur B. Culvahouse, Jr., Counsel to the President 1 (undated).
2.
Ostrow, Unit Looks into Meese Wedtech Ties; Justice Department Weighs Appointment of Special Counsel, L.A. Times, May 6, 1987, at 4, col. 1 (quoting former Senator Harrison Schmitt of New Mexico, who served as vice-chairman of the Senate ethics committee from 1977-79).
3.
"Report of Independent Counsel" In re Edwin Meese III 20 ( July 5, 1988) [hereinafter "In Re Meese Report"].
4.
"Meese Denies Impropriety on Disclosure of Trust Details", Wash. Post, July 10, 1987, at A1.
5.
Id.
6.
This was true again with regard to a proposed pipeline from Iraq to Aqaba, Jordan. Wallach was hired to help arrange an insurance fund against the possibility of an Israeli attack on the pipeline. One of the plans involved part of the revenue from the pipeline being paid to Israel. Meese's only role was to introduce Wallach and the idea to Robert McFarlane, the National Security Advisor. However, in one memorandum to Meese, Wallach intimated that part of the Israeli funds would be paid to the Labor Party, an action that arguably constituted a violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Wallach was an unstoppable memo writer, and the recipients, Meese and others, often left his memos unread. For a variety of reasons, the pipeline was never built, and because there was no evidence other than Wallach's gratuitous memo that an improper payment was contemplated to be paid to the Labor Party, and more importantly, no evidence that Meese actually knew of this proposal, "[t]he independent counsel... determined that the available admissible evidence [was] insufficient to conclude that Mr. Meese's activities in furtherance of the pipeline project violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act." In re Meese Report, supra note 3, at 49.

Mr. Wallach was tried and convicted of various federal crimes flowing out of his relationship with Wedtech; however, these convictions were reversed and a new trial ordered because of the perjury of a principal government witness. The perjury was substantively unrelated to the facts as they pertain to Wallach but did go to the veracity of the witness. See U.S. v. Wallach, 935 F. 2d 445 (2d Cir. 1991).

-214-

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The Attorney General's Lawyer: Inside the Meese Justice Department
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents ix
  • Foreword xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Note 3
  • Part I - Beginnings 5
  • 1 - Surmounting the Independent Counsel 7
  • Notes 16
  • 2 - In Search of Original Intent 17
  • 3 - The Unitary Executive 47
  • Notes 65
  • Part II - The Essence 69
  • 4 - Family: Abortion, Aids, Pornography, and School Choice 71
  • Notes 106
  • 5 - Work: Securing Economic Liberty 111
  • Notes 129
  • 6 - Neighborhood: The Revival of Federalism 132
  • 7 - Peace: The Color-Blind Society 152
  • Notes 175
  • 8 - Freedom: Iran-Contra and the Criminalization of the Separation of Powers 179
  • Notes 188
  • Part III - The Finale 191
  • 9 - Ethics, Give Us More Ethics 193
  • Notes 214
  • Epilogue 219
  • Notes 220
  • Selected Bibliography 221
  • Index 225
  • About the Author 235
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