This is NOT the statement of the US Attorney for the Southern District Of Florida who just resigned. You can find her statement here- a pabulum of "We did our best, I am very proud, we were tough on crime...yada yada yada (yawn) " Nothing new under the sun. Won't be quoted as much as McArthur's farewell address: "Duty. Honor. Country... But I want you to know that when I cross over that river, my last conscious thoughts will be the Corps, and the Corps, and the Corps."
NOT the statement of the departing US Attorney:
When I accepted the nomination to be the first senate confirmed female US Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, I had some soul searching to do. Would I want to be nominated by a man who routinely sexually assaulted women, bragged about grabbing them by their genitalia, engaged in a massive coverup to pay off a pornographic star that would result in his personal attorney going to prison, and was generally considered a sexist lout?
Would I want to be a public servant nominated by Senator Joe McCarthy? Would I have accepted an appointment to be sheriff of Tuscaloosa Alabama by Governor George Wallace? Would I have deployed my officers to protect Wallace as he stood in the door of the University of Alabama to bar entry to African American students seeking an education? Is there is any job worth having where you have to accept appointment by a person who has no concept of what General McArthur called "Duty. Honor. Country? By a person who dodged the Vietnam draft and ridiculed soldiers who fought and died for their county?
What about the ideals of the Justice Department? Was I comfortable with a department who had gone from Attorney General Eric Holder's edict that line prosecutors did not have to indict every defendant for the most serious crime, to a DOJ under Jeff Sessions that sought maximum incarceration on every case? Was I comfortable with a DOJ that went back to prosecuting marijuana cases in the United States in this day and age?
How much are someone's principles worth versus a job they want? This was the choice I was confronted with. Of course one could say that being on the "inside" I could fight for the changes we all know are necessary. But in looking back over my term in office, I did no such thing. It was business as usual. "Follow the guidelines judge. Impose the minimum mandatory. Send the kid to prison for decades if you can. It is what we as representatives of the United States want for this marijuana case." That's what my office did. We were tough on crime by golly. None of that "enlightened justice" crap for us.
How did it feel to be a member of a government where the President of the United States believed the DOJ was his own personal law firm? Where the President fired the director of the FBI because he would not pledge his personal loyalty to the president instead of the country. Well let me ask you this- do you remember that FBI director's name now? (It was James Comey if you forgot). He made a principled stand and what is he up to now? I served as US Attorney and now I have a big money career at a large law firm waiting for me. What does Coney get for his stand? What do principles buy you except a good nights sleep? They don't pay for a Condo in St. Barts and a private jet to fly you there.
Of course if everyone stood up for their principles and refused to join a government run by a moronic fool who nearly killed us all by ignoring a pandemic then maybe we could all have forced some much needed change. But I am no fool. I was not going to put my neck out first. All that would have happened is that it would have gotten chopped off. Sure Israel honors non-Jews who hid Jewish families during Nazism as the "Righteous Among Nations" but what if those people were discovered? They were sent off to concentration camps as well. Who wants that?
I made no principled stand. I took the nomination and there was not one thing that President Trump ever did that made me consider resigning. In for a penny. In for a pound. I towed the DOJ line and took criminal and prosecution and sentencing several steps backwards. I worked for a President who was impeached twice and inspired a group of white militant racists to storm the Capitol and try and stop the certification of Joe Biden as President. A President who in other words wanted a coup d'etat and bullied and threatened public servants in Georgia to try and "find votes" for him to thwart the will of the people. I walked into my office every day under the gaze of President Trump's picture and it did not bother me one bit. You all elected him.
It was an honor to be your US attorney. At least it was for me.