Statement by Troy A. Eid, United States Attorney, District of Colorado
“The role of a United States Attorney is entirely apolitical, and must be free from outside influence or pressure. That is how I have always approached this position, and I will keep doing so as long as I serve.
“It has been widely reported that I was a partner at Greenberg Traurig (“GT”), the same “lobbying” firm where convicted felon Jack Abramoff worked. This attempt at guilt-by-association is like saying that anyone who has worked for the FBI is tainted because one renegade former agent, Robert Hansen, was convicted of spying.
“GT is one of the world’s largest law firms, and like many others it does engage in lobbying – but at heart it is a full-service, litigation and transactional law firm. There were more than 1,600 attorneys in 34 offices when I was there from Oct. 2003 to Aug. 2006.
“Abramoff and I overlapped in the same firm for only a few months of my GT employment. During that time, while he was a non-lawyer lobbyist in the DC office, I was a litigation partner in the Denver office focused on environmental law. We did not work together.
“After Abramoff was terminated from the firm, I was asked by the managing partner, Cesar Alvarez, to serve on the internal committee that proposed changes designed to help avoid future wrongdoing. At the time I was chairing the Colorado Board of Ethics, and I was selected because of my expertise on ethics issues.
“It has also been suggested that the fact that I worked for GT had something to do with the slow pace with which my Presidential nomination took place. The fact is, my background check took two months – standard for U.S. Attorneys.
“The reason for the hold-up in naming a new U.S. Attorney in Colorado had nothing to do with background checks or investigations, but with the politics of whittling down the list of the three finalists recommended and supported by Colorado’s two U.S. Senators.
“At one point I publicly withdrew from the nomination process, which had dragged out too long, only to be asked to reconsider. My entire Senate confirmation process took less than two months, and the vote was unanimous.
“There is no greater professional honor than to serve as Colorado’s top federal law enforcement officer. I am very grateful to President Bush and the United States Senate – and especially to my colleagues in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Colorado – for this high privilege.”