U.S. Attorney Firings Causing Controversy

March 21, 2007

The firing of eight U.S. attorneys has prompted Democrats on Capitol Hill to seek subpoenas for top White House aides.

House democrats wasted no time firing back Wednesday morning following President Bush's defiant refusal to allow his aides to speak under oath about the controversial firings of eight federal prosecutors.

Democrats say the dismissals were politically motivated and want subpoenas for top White House aides. Republicans, of course, see it

The President is willing to let former counsel Harriet Miers and adviser Karl Rove explain to committee members why the U.S. attorneys were replaced, but claims public testimony would set a bad precedent.

"We will not go along with a partisan fishing expedition aimed at honorable public servants" said President Bush.

With both sides refusing to blink there's a chance this standoff could become a constitutional crisis and eventually be decided by the U-S Supreme Court.

In the meantime the powerful Senate Judiciary committee takes up the issue on Thursday, but its already clear what key Democrats are looking for.

"A conversation is fine, but lets have a conversation under oath with a transcript" said Senator Charles Schumer, D-New York.

And not to be lost in this controversy is the status of Attorney General Albert Gonzales, the man who insists he fired the prosecutors for poor performance issues.

He got another pat on the back from President Bush Tuesday, but that likely wont stop critics from calling for his resignation.

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