I was struck by a point made by Andrew McCarthy in his article on Lynne Stewart and her apologists:
According to Preston’s article, Harris has told the judge that the terrorism counts against Ms. Stewart were “unwarranted overkill.” Harris reportedly elaborated that Stewart “didn’t have a clue that the stick she was poking in the government’s eye was going to have consequences beyond her imagination.”I was curious to know more about this Clinton appointee who rallied to the defense of a terror-supporter. A little googling turned up this old Robert Novak column which is especially interesting:
[Fran] Townsend moved to the U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan -- notoriously liberal-laden amid a Republican administration. Townsend's boss and patron there was Jo Ann Harris, whose orientation was liberal Democratic.See also here and here.
When Attorney General Reno in 1993 summoned Harris to Washington as assistant attorney general running the Criminal Division, Harris immediately brought Townsend along as her aide. Townsend was promoted to oversee international law enforcement and then became counsel to the attorney general for terrorism and head of the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR) -- a political Reno appointment for a supposed career slot.