Three papers from the old center of the steel industry have joined the media chorus of Mike Nifong’s critics. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review noted the supreme irony of this case: “that while Nifong conspired to get three young men and win an election, he may have gotten himself.” The bar wants him out, good evidence exists that “candidate Nifong played the race card and sacrificed three young men on the altar of his political aspirations,” and the Nifong-Meehan conspiracy “may be a crime.”
No wonder, the Tribune-Review observes, Nifong took the oath of office in private.
A bit to the west, the News-Herald, based in northeastern
As the N-H comments, Nifong “didn’t seem to mind helping to sell newspapers when he brought the charges in the first place, making daily public statements smearing the players and calling them ‘hooligans.’” That the D.A. clings to the case “defies logic, and the whole sordid tale raises serious questions about his integrity.”
Meanwhile, the N-H appropriately awards a bouquet to the Duke administration for lifting the suspensions of Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty. “Duke administrators,” the editors observe, “apparently see what Nifong refuses to admit, which is that there is overwhelming doubt about the guilt of the accused players.”
The most devastating editorial comes from
It goes without saying, the P-D reasons, that “Nifong has so badly managed the matter that he must recuse himself.”
Correctly, the editors realize that while “Nifong’s prejudicial comments spurred a formal disciplinary complaint to the North Carolina State Bar, . . . they have turned out to be the least of his offenses.” The procedural monstrosity of the April 4 lineup and the Nifong-Meehan DNA conspiracy far exceed the prejudicial comments on the scale of wrongdoing. The latter, according to the P-D, offers “the strongest evidence yet that the prosecutor himself should be the subject of an investigation, and that he should have no further connection with this case.”
It’s “ridiculous to believe an impartial jury could convict the defendants on the remaining charges,” the P-D concludes.
With virtually every major paper in the country (absent the New York Times) and dozens of smaller papers denouncing Nifong, for what is AG Gonzales waiting? ABC news reports that Walter Jones wants to know the answer to this question: yesterday, he sent a third letter to the AG demanding a federal inquiry into Nifong’s misconduct. While David Price has reverted to the states’ rights position of civil rights opponents in