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Archive for March 15th, 2007

By S-Q @ 12:18 PM MDT

© 2007 Stephen Pitt

During a speech on the House floor on Thursday, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) declared that “impeachment may well be the only remedy which remains to stop a war of aggression against Iran.” The 2004 presidential candidate, who is running again in 2008, told RAW STORY that his House floor statement “speaks for itself.”

“This House cannot avoid its constitutionally authorized responsibility to restrain the abuse of Executive power,” Kucinich said on the floor today. “The Administration has been preparing for an aggressive war against Iran. There is no solid, direct evidence that Iran has the intention of attacking the United States or its allies.”

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By S-Q @ 12:17 PM MDT


A bill sponsored by the chair of the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), seeks to stop the “rewriting of history” by restoring full access to presidential records, RAW STORY has learned.

“There are those who would like to rewrite history for their own purposes,” Waxman warned in a floor speech, available at the Speaker of the House’s blog, The Gavel.

Waxman was speaking out in favor of the Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2007, a bill he co-sponsored to cancel a 2001 executive order by President George W. Bush that “gave current and former presidents and vice presidents broad authority to withhold presidential records or delay their release indefinitely,” according to a fact sheet at Waxman’s website.

“It would allow the records, the raw information to be available, and let those who want to interpret those events do so as they see fit,” Waxman said of the bill.

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By S-Q @ 9:00 am MDT

© 2007 Stephen Pitt

WASHINGTON — The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday cleared the way for subpoenas compelling five Justice Department officials and six of the U.S. attorneys they fired to tell the story of the purge that has prompted demands for the ouster of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

The voice vote to authorize the panel to issue subpoenas amounts to insurance against the possibility that Gonzales could retract his permission to let the aides testify voluntarily, or impose strict conditions.

The committee also postponed for a week a vote on whether to authorize subpoenas of top aides to President Bush who were involved in the eight firings, including political adviser Karl Rove, former White House Counsel Harriet Miers and deputy White House Counsel William K. Kelley.

The committee approved subpoena power over key Justice Department officials involved in the firings: Michael Elston, Kyle Sampson, Monica Goodling, Bill Mercer and Mike Battle.

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By S-Q @ 2:25 PM MDT

© 2007 Stephen Pitt

Unreleased E-Mails Contradict White House Assertions That the Firings Originated With Harriet Miers

March 15, 2007 — New unreleased e-mails from top administration officials show that the idea of firing all 93 U.S. attorneys was raised by White House adviser Karl Rove in early January 2005, indicating Rove was more involved in the plan than the White House previously acknowledged.

The e-mails also show that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales discussed the idea of firing the attorneys en masse while he was still White House counsel, weeks before he was confirmed as attorney general.

The e-mails directly contradict White House assertions that the notion originated with recently departed White House counsel Harriet Miers, and was her idea alone.

Two independent sources in a position to know have described the contents of the e-mail exchange, which could be released as early as Friday. They put Rove at the epicenter of the imbroglio and raise questions about Gonzales’ explanations of the matter.

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Seedy Gonzales

By S-Q @ 7:17 am MDT

Aasif Mandvi defends Alberto Gonzales by quoting court room movies.

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Statements On Firings of Prosecutors Are Key Issue

By S-Q @ 7:46 AM MDT

© 2007 Stephen Pitt

In testimony on Jan. 18, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales assured the Senate Judiciary Committee that the Justice Department had no intention of avoiding Senate input on the hiring of U.S. attorneys.

Just a month earlier, D. Kyle Sampson, who was then Gonzales’s chief of staff, laid out a plan to do just that. In an e-mail, he detailed a strategy for evading Arkansas Democrats in installing Tim Griffin, a former GOP operative and protege of presidential adviser Karl Rove, as the U.S. attorney in Little Rock.

“We should gum this to death,” Sampson wrote to a White House aide on Dec. 19. “[A]sk the senators to give Tim a chance . . . then we can tell them we’ll look for other candidates, ask them for recommendations, evaluate the recommendations, interview their candidates, and otherwise run out the clock. All of this should be done in ‘good faith,’ of course.”

The conflict between documents released this week and previous administration statements is quickly becoming the central issue for lawmakers who are angry about the way Gonzales and his aides handled the coordinated firings of eight U.S. attorneys last year.

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Copyrighted art is with permission by the Artist- Stephen Pitt

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Leahy says he will subpoena Rove

By S-Q @ 10:19 pm MDT


WASHINGTON (CNN) — Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, said Wednesday that he will subpoena Karl Rove to appear before his panel regarding the Bush administration’s firing of eight U.S. attorneys, if the White House deputy chief of staff does not do so voluntarily.

“He can appear voluntarily if he wants,” Leahy said of Rove in an interview with CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer. “If he doesn’t, I will subpoena him.”

Leahy added, “The attorney general said, ‘Well, there are some staff people or lower level people — I am not sure whether I want to allow them to testify or not.’ I said, ‘Frankly, Mr. attorney general, it’s not your decision, it’s mine and the committee’s.’ We will have some subpoenas.”

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