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Ex-Bush Aides Subpoenaed in Fired-Attorney Inquiry


Today, Congress issued subpoenas for testimony from two former White House aides about the firing of U.S. attorneys. Lawmakers also demanded White House documents related to the firings.

NPR's Ari Shapiro has that story.

ARI SHAPIRO: It's been six months since Congress first started investigating the U.S. attorney dismissals, and lawmakers still have major unanswered questions about who suggested that each prosecutor be fired and why. Newly released Justice Department documents show more White House involvement in the process than anyone had previously acknowledged.

Two names in particular keep popping up in those e-mails: Sara Taylor and Harriet Miers. Taylor was White House political director under Karl Rove and Miers was the White House counsel.

Today, the House and Senate Judiciary Committees issued subpoenas for the women to testify a month from now. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy said the White House cannot have it both ways. It cannot stonewall congressional investigations by refusing to provide documents and witnesses while claiming nothing improper occurred.

The White House has offered private, unsworn interviews without a transcript, but Democrats and some Republicans say that's no good because without a transcript, people can disagree about what was said behind closed doors.

Today, White House Spokesman Tony Snow said the White House will review the subpoenas and respond appropriately. When asked whether the president will fight the subpoenas in court, Snow said that is way premature.

Ari Shapiro, NPR News, Washington. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

United States & World Morning EditionAll Things Considered
Ari Shapiro has been one of the hosts of All Things Considered, NPR's award-winning afternoon newsmagazine, since 2015. During his first two years on the program, listenership to All Things Considered grew at an unprecedented rate, with more people tuning in during a typical quarter-hour than any other program on the radio.