(This is a guest blog written by "Siegelman 2006" Communications Director Chip Hill. The views expressed are those of Hill and not necessarily those of the publisher of AlabamaElections. Hill's contact information is available at Siegelman 2006
Bill Canary is the husband of the US Attorney, Leura Canary. His bio is available online and while I won't list it in detail, you will see that he has been a GOP operative at the highest levels since the late 80's, a key Lieutenant to Karl Rove in Alabama court races in the 90's, former Chief of Staff to the Republican National Committee, and National Field Director for the Bush/Quayle Campaign.
The following citations are interesting:
"William Canary later joined the Riley campaign and now serves as BCA president."
[Southern trilogy: how Republicans captured governorships in Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama - Case StudiesCampaigns & Elections
, June, 2003
by David Beile
"Canary prides himself on being a well-connected Republican strategist. He has no patience with Democrats at any level. He is wired into Riley’s policy-making, and as it stands now, he likely will be a cheerleader for Riley to seek a second term." [Business Alabama, Ford, Apr. 2004]
"BCA President Bill Canary, who sees himself as a Riley adviser, is not likely to allow the BCA to abandon Riley if he wants a second term" [Business Alabama, Ford, August 2004]
"Bill Canary is a political paratrooper." said former RNC Chairman Rich Bond. "If you've got a problem that needs fixing, you drop him in and it get's fixed." [TIME, Cramer, 3/27/95]
Federal Election Disclosure forms and filings in the Secretary of State's office show that Bill Canary received 40,000 from Bill Pryor to be his political consultant in 98. Almost immediately after taking office Pryor began investigating Siegelman. In 01 Canary received 38,000 from Steve Windom to be his consultant in the 02 Governor's race. Windom ran exclusively on calling for investigation of Siegelman. After her failed run for the Court of Criminal Appeals, Alice Martin received multiple payments from Bill Canary's Capitol Group PAC. Martin then became US Attorney, Northern District in 01 and later indicted Siegelman. And we know that Leura Canary worked for Pryor from 99-01, became US Attorney in 01 and later indicted Siegelman.
Other interesting research has come to light.
Department Of Justice rules of conduct outline the specific steps a US Attorney must take regarding any possible conflict of interest. The recusal must be done immediately after conflict is discovered.
We know that US Attorney Leura Canary only submitted recusal paperwork after Siegelman Attorney David Cromwell Johnson's press conference in March of 02. Then two months after the press conference she "voluntarily recused herself."
The questions are: If these possible conflicts existed two months after she was outed, did they not exist at the outset of her office's investigation? And, did her recusal paperwork accurately reflect all of the conflicts (i.e. Pryor's payment to her husband, Windom's payment to her husband, Her husband's payments to Alice Martin). In other words, did she admit that her husband was financially tied to everyone who had investigated, called for investigations, or indicted Don Siegelman?
Any conflict she reported after Johnson's press conference was already in existence at the outset which, under doj rules, required her to recuse herself up front, which we know she did not.
Also, is it not a valid question to ask if the GJ would have interpreted the testimony and evidence differently had they been made aware of the fact that the US Attorney's husband was financially linked to everyone who had furthered the investigation of Don Siegelman?
Does the fact that the GJ was not made aware of these conflicts not bring into question the validity of the indictments?
Sure Louis Franklin's name is on the indictment, but for them to continually use her "recusal" to excuse all this, is like saying that a newspaper editor has nothing to do with a story because his name is not on the byline. It's asinine.