It was almost inevitable that the case of former Preston Gates superlobbyist Jack Abramoff would rise to the surface in the U.S. Attorneys scandal. Before he was sent to prison last year on assorted conspiracy and fraud charges, Abramoff, who worked for Seattle's Preston Gates Ellis law firm (now K&L Gates) as a D.C. lobbyist from the mid-90s through 2001, was the target of a grand jury investigation in Guam. That was in 2002 and involved an unusual arrangement he had consulting for that nation's Supreme Court. But just as the grand jury probe of that deal began, President Bush removed the supervising federal prosecutor and the investigation died off. The Los Angeles Times reported Abramoff was paid with a series of $9,000 checks funneled through a Laguna Beach lawyer to disguise Abramoff's role working for the Guam court. Today, according to TPM Muckraker, a nonpartisan congressional watchdog group called Democracy 21 asked Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty whether there had been political interference in any portions of the investigation and prosecution of Republican loyalist Abramoff. "Based on issues that have been raised in the firing of the eight U.S Attorneys, we're all in a position to want some assurance that there hasn't been political interference in the case," said Demo21 president Fred Wertheimer. Not surprisingly, Purgegate is starting out much like Lobbygate did, with a trail that flows ever backwards.