Man Denied DOJ Job Because of Wife’s Democrat Ties Is Identified

July 29, 2008 10:31 am

Among our coverage yesterday of the OIG report, was the specific case of an “experienced terrorism prosecutor” who was denied a DOJ promotion because Monica Goodling discovered that his wife was a longtime Democrat.

That man has now been identified by The Buffalo News as William J. Hochul Jr., a career federal prosecutor from Western New York, whose wife, Kathleen Hochul, was a longtime Democrat:

The report does not name that attorney, but sources told The Buffalo News that it was William J. Hochul Jr., a winner of the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service — and the husband of Kathleen C. Hochul, a longtime Democratic activist and former Hamburg Town Board member who was elected Erie County clerk in 2007.

The Justice Department’s liaison to the Bush White House, Monica M. Goodling, blocked Hochul’s appointment to the counterterrorism post, sources said.

“As a result, a much less experienced, but politically acceptable, attorney was assigned this important responsibility,” says the report, issued by the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility and Inspector General.

The Buffalo News also identifies another Western New York federal prosecutor mentioned in the report, who was also nixed by Goodling for a promotion to Main Justice:

Similarly, although Michael A. Battle — former U. S. attorney in Western New York — headed the Executive Office of U. S. Attorneys from 2005 to 2007, Goodling blocked his choice for his own top assistant.

Goodling viewed Battle’s pick as a “political infant” who had not proved himself to the Republican Party, Battle told investigators. Sources identified the failed nominee as John Kelly of the U. S. attorney’s office in Rochester.

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