Bush Invokes Executive Privilege In Showdown With Congress

July 9, 2007

President Bush invoked executive privilege Monday to deny requests made by Congress for testimony from two former aides about the firings of federal prosecutors.

The White House did again offer to have former counsel Harriet Miers and one time political director Sara Taylor available for private, off the record interviews.

In a letter to the heads of the House and Senate Judiciary panels, White House counsel Fred Fielding insisted that Bush was acting in good faith and refused lawmakers' demand that the President explain the basis for invoking the privilege.

Retorted House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers:

"Contrary what the White House may believe, it is the Congress and the courts that will decide whether an invocation of executive privilege is valid, not the White House unilaterally," the Michigan Democrat said in a statement.

President Bush's decision is the latest move in a continuing battle pitting the White House against Congress. If the battle continues and neither side yields the case could end up in federal court.

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