Technical Difficulties


On Sunday, 60 Minutes ran a segment on the federal government's pretty outrageous and politically-motivated prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman. Unlike much of the U.S. Attorney imbroglio, the pursuit of Siegelman reeks of genuine scandal, and may involve actual criminal acts committed by members of the Bush administration.

TPM Muckraker has the incredible video.

Also, Scott Horton at Harper's notes an even odder development:

I am now hearing from readers all across Northern Alabama—from Decatur to Huntsville and considerably on down—that a mysterious "service interruption" blocked the broadcast of only the Siegelman segment of 60 Minutes this evening. The broadcaster is Channel 19 WHNT, which serves Northern Alabama and Southern Tennessee. This station was noteworthy for its hostility to Siegelman and support for his Republican adversary. The station ran a trailer stating "We apologize that you missed the first segment of 60 Minutes tonight featuring 'The Prosecution of Don Siegelman.' It was a technical problem with CBS out of New York." I contacted CBS News in New York and was told that "There were no transmission difficulties. The problems were peculiar to Channel 19, which had the signal and had functioning transmitters." Channel 19 is owned by Oak Hill Capital Partners . . . Oak Hill Partners represents interests of the Bass family, which contribute heavily to the Republican Party.

This is pretty brazen stuff. Siegelman's serving seven years for something that happens every day in this country, at every level of government. If this can happen to a popular former state governor, you wonder what happens to people accused of federal crimes who don't have that kind of clout.

Probably something like this.