John N. Mitchell was the United States Attorney General for President Nixon just as Alberto R. Gonzales is the Attorney General now for President Bush.
Mr. Mitchell was indicted and convicted for actions while Attorney General and served 19 months in prison.
Attorney General Gonzales is also considered a fine lawyer and honest and a good man. He is very patriotic.
Bush and Nixon and Gonzales and Mitchell all advocate the use of wiretips in national security cases without obtaining a court order as required by the Constitution. Where all 4 advocate the Unitary Executive theory that a President decides which laws a President will obey.
We have the 3 branches of government to try and ensure that government officials are honest and good. A Court must issue a warrant before government agents can spy on an American citizen. The President and Attorney General and NSA folks must obey the laws made by Congress just like everybody else. The Unitary Executive theory makes a joke out of the role of checks and balances by the 3 branches of government. The only recourse to restrain a President becomes impeachment and the writers of our Constitution hardly wanted that to be the situation.