Gonzales Testimony Is Undercut
Emails Show White House, Justice Aides Orchestrated Effort to Fire Prosecutors
By EVAN PEREZ and GARY FIELDS
March 14, 2007; Page A3
WASHINGTON — Emails between White House aides and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’s chief of staff show an orchestrated effort to fire several U.S. attorneys, counter to Mr. Gonzales’s previous assertions that the firings weren’t instigated by the White House.
The emails released yesterday appear to conflict with statements Mr. Gonzales and other top Justice Department officials made to members of Congress in testimony and letters explaining the prosecutor dismissals. Some lawmakers and former Justice Department officials say Mr. Gonzales, a longtime friend of President Bush who previously served as White House counsel, seems to be acting more as presidential counselor than the nation’s top law-enforcement officer.
Mr. Gonzales, who two years ago was touted as a strong possibility to be the first Hispanic chief justice of the Supreme Court, now faces demands for his resignation from some lawmakers and the prospect of frequent appearances before congressional committees investigating the U.S. attorney dismissals.