Comey Defends Fired Attorneys

Most were strong performers, former deputy AG tells House panel
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted May 4, 2007 8:52 AM CDT

(Newser) – Most of the U.S. attorneys axed en masse by the Justice Department last year weren't underperforming, former Deputy Attorney General James Comey told a House panel yesterday. Comey, who left Justice over a year before the firings, said he'd rated the attorneys' performance for Chief of Staff Kyle Sampson in 2005.

Six of the eight who were later fired got good grades. Comey said Sampson asked him for a list of the weakest attorneys; only one of the names he provided ended up on the chopping block. Republicans on the panel said the testimony was irrelevant, pointing to the gap between Comey's departure and the firings.