July 23rd, 2010
05:19 PM ET
8 years ago

Gonzales: 'I feel angry'

Washington (CNN) - In his first interview since the Justice Department said it decided not to charge Alberto Gonzales in the controversial firings of nine U. S. attorneys, the former U.S. Attorney General said he is angry about the investigation process.

"Well I feel good, John. I feel angry," Gonzales told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King. "I feel angry that I had to go through this; that my family had to suffer through this and what for? It was for nothing. I'm glad the investigation is over, and I'm glad the American people were reassured that nothing wrong happened during my tenure as the attorney general in connection with the removals of these U.S. attorneys."

Attorney General Eric Holder has accepted the "recommendation that criminal prosecution is not warranted," according to a letter sent to the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

The question as to whether the dismissals were made for political reasons led to a huge controversy in Washington. Gonzales ultimately resigned.

Asked on CNN's John King, USA about the political climate that existed in Washington at the time, and criticism of the Department of Justice under his management, Gonzales said he doesn't expect any apologies.

"Listen I don't expect an apology from men like Chuck Schumer, and I would put him and other individuals who were attacking me at the top of the list contributing to the low, low public perception of Congress, the integrity of Congress quite frankly."

And while Gonzales said he is taking a wait and see approach to the controversial Arizona immigration law, he did say that the Republican Party outreach to the Hispanic community must change if Republicans expect support from that crucial voting block.

"I think it is important that not only do you have the right message to the Hispanic community, you've got to have the right tone in delivering that message and you have to have the right messenger."

"I firmly believe, based on my observations of working with George Bush, he was the right messenger to the Republican Party. And listen, Hispanics didn't agree with everything that George Bush stood for, but I think - I honestly believe that he cared about their issues, he wanted to understand their issues. And until the Republican Party has a standard bearer like that, I'm afraid we're going to have some difficulties in future elections," he said.

Filed under: Alberto Gonzalez • JKUSA • John King USA • Popular Posts
soundoff (112 Responses)
  1. Margaret Anderson/Boise, Idaho

    Mr. Gonzales certainly is not owed any apologies. He owes the country an apology for the damage he did to the Justice Department and this country.

    July 23, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  2. Larry

    Hey Gonzales

    Your guilty as hell, and you know it

    Your only being allowed to walk because the buck does not end with you, and we have more important things to do than waste precious time on a loser like you

    July 23, 2010 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  3. Jay Howard

    This man is a total piece of dirt. He abused and debased our justice system to achieve the ends desired by Dick Cheney and George Bush. He was nothing but a lickspittle psychophant. His incompetence would be laughable if it weren't for the deadly seriousness of his actions.

    July 23, 2010 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  4. Pragmatic

    Two or three weeks of "preparation" – 6 hours of testimony & 86 times this man whined "I don't recall" .... he deserves nothing but scorn if not prison time.

    July 23, 2010 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  5. Caron Speas

    I am VERY angry, too. You should have gone to prison, sir. To prison for torture, for violation of the law in the firing of the U.S. Attorneys, and for sheer incompetence and stupidity.

    July 23, 2010 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  6. bob

    Moab, no one makes Bush look brilliant.

    July 23, 2010 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  7. usualone

    He got off easy. I guess the present administration realizes he was just representing the White House and this administration has too many more issues to attend to. Of course, he ruined decent careers of others whom he fired.

    July 23, 2010 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  8. bob

    Ancient Texan, politics in Washington has smelled a lot longer ago than today.

    July 23, 2010 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  9. GonzoinHouston

    The report stated that the firings were political, but they didn't have enough evidence to warrant prosecution. So for this particular act we have to upgrade his actions from "criminal" to merely "grossly unethical".

    And for Reese @5:54,
    "Liberals using the law to ruin families for political reasons"

    That's exactly what Gonzalez did to the fired attorneys!

    July 23, 2010 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  10. Utah Lady

    A recommendatin of no prosecution was made to the Attorney General. That's all. Colntrary to what Gonzales says, that does NOT mean that he did nothing wrong. He did,

    Once again the Obama administration wimped out. It should have thrown the book at Gonzales. Sad.

    July 23, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  11. Ken

    Alberto Gonzales is the perfect example of just how stupid george bushy was, and is. George will probably be rated in the worst 2 or 3 U.S. Presidents in history, but can any one imagine where "can't recall" al will be rated as Attorney General?

    July 23, 2010 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  12. ib

    this was all for nothing except to make the far left feel good. Look at what Clinton did only difference was he was a democrat.

    July 23, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  13. NoBush3

    They did "Nothing Wrong"????? Just because it wasn't illegal doesn't mean what they did wasn't unbelievably wrong. Firing people because they prosecuted Republicans and not Democrats is just the tip of what the previous administration did for "Political" reasons. They raped this country and now they have a black man to blame for it.

    July 23, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  14. New Age Independant

    Another ridiculous smokescreen by liberals. The entire country already knew nothing could come of this. Democrat precedence was already in place when Clinton fired many more lawyers, yet there was no outcry. Democrats have zero credibility and are in line for massive losses.

    July 23, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  15. ThinkAgain

    Gonzales fits the profile of someone committing criminal acts. I want to see his citizenship papers.

    July 23, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  16. Rigel54

    The dominant view here is spot on. He was a stooge for an anti-constitutional administration that moved our country dangerously closer Fascism (yes, it's cliche, replace with image of Mussolini's Italy, not an icon, just a dirty little autocracy).

    Bush makes a nutria look brilliant. Obama is not perfect (think the drilling moratorium that protect little and does terrible damage), but he's bright, aggressive, and most importantly, is trying to do good for the country. Bush's team were trying to do right for themselves and their buds. The Tea Peasantry is too dumb to know (even after a decade) that they're being played.

    July 23, 2010 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  17. justthinkin2

    I am so sick of hearing about the "Hispanic voting bloc" sick of it.

    July 23, 2010 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  18. Truth Squad

    As a few sane minds have said, this guy did NO WRONG.

    It was perfectly acceptable to fire these people, but the media and Democrats had their slogan "Culture of Corruption" and anything they could drum up to fit into that narrative was run with.

    Demorats and liberals always complain about the money that was spent prosecuting clinton but never mention Mark Foley, Tom Delay and Ted Stevens.

    All sitting Congressman who were indicted and later never convicted of any wrong doing. They were able to get those three out of congress while keeping them on the ballot because they waited until it was too late to remove them from the ballot to indict.

    However, they did sue in 2002 to keep Torecelli off the ballot in NJ depsite it being too late to get him off.

    Double-standards, part of being a Democrats for decades made possible by willing accomplices in the media

    July 23, 2010 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  19. Frank in Valparaiso Indiana

    He ought to be in jail. He got a pass thanks to the good ole boys club of lawyers. He ought to crawl back under his rock and count his blessings.

    July 23, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  20. cnn always liberal all the time

    sucks to be a liberal on this one.

    July 23, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  21. Michael

    It is amazing that he remembers anything around him, certainly he had no memory when testifying in Congress.

    July 23, 2010 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  22. Jim in Florida

    this was a hatchet job on Gonzales concoted by the left and their lapdog media, of which CNN was a willing participant.

    July 23, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  23. Chuck Anaheim, Ca

    Don't worry al buddy, there's still those war cime things out there.

    July 23, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  24. NoBush3

    Yeah, OJ wasn't gulity either.

    July 23, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  25. fideauxdon

    Gonzo is solely responsible for what he went through. In a perfect world, he'd be serving time with Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Scooter Libby and the other trash that drove us to where we are today. If Obama made one major error, it was in not prosecuting these war criminals.

    July 23, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
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