Bush aides ordered to testify

A US congressional panel has authorised legal orders for several White House aides to testify under oath about the firing of eight prosecutors.

Bush aides ordered to testify

A UScongressional panel has authorised legal orders for several White Houseaides to testify under oath about the firing of eight prosecutors.

A House of Representatives judiciary sub-committeeagreed to authorise subpoenas if Karl Rove, a senior political adviser to the USpresident, and others refuse to testify voluntarily under oath.



The action came a day after George Bush vowed to oppose anysubpoenas. He offered instead to allow aides to answer questions frominvestigators, but only behind closed doors, not under oath and with notranscript taken of their exchanges.

Democrats called the offer unacceptable.



Deepening scandal

Recent disclosures about the firings of eight US attorneyshave ignited a firestorm over whether the prosecutors were pushed out forpolitical reasons and have prompted calls for Alberto Gonzales, the attorneygeneral, to resign.

John Conyers of Michigan,a Democratic representative and chairman of the full judiciary committee, saidhe hoped that the White House and congress could reach an agreement to avoid aconfrontation.

"I hope we can work this out," Conyers said. Hesaid in a brief interview after Wednesday's vote that he planned to talkto the White House again later in the day.

"Sometimes things look gloomy and then all of a suddenthey look better," he said.

But Bush appeared to be in no mood to compromise on Tuesday,saying he would oppose any effort to drag aides to Capitol Hill for a"show trial".

"I will oppose any attempts to subpoena White Houseofficials," Bush said.

Bush has reaffirmed his support of Gonzales, but a fewof his fellow Republicans in congress have joined a number of Democrats insaying the administration would be better off if Gonzales stepped aside.

Several lawyers removed by the US justice department headedby Gonzales have said that they were sacked after refusing to launch whatthey say were politically-motivated corruption inquiries involving Democrats.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16