July 9th, 2007
10:26 AM ET
10 years ago

Official: White House Counsel will refuse requests for log of documents

WASHINGTON (CNN) - White House Counsel Fred Fielding will be sending a letter Monday to Sen. Patrick Leahy and Rep. John Conyers reiterating the White House's refusal to comply with the subpoena for documents related to the U.S. attorneys' controversy, a senior administration official told CNN.

Democrats have set Monday morning as a deadline for Fielding to at least provide a log of what documents the White House is withholding and to provide further justification for why the White House is asserting executive privilege.

The senior administration official said Fielding will refuse on both counts - will not turn over a log of documents and will point out that the White House previously explained its justification for executive privilege by releasing letters on June 28 from Fielding and the solicitor general.

"We've shown an extraordinary amount of accommodation," said the official. "It's clear to us what the Democrats want is a confrontation."

In June, the Judiciary committees in the House and Senate issued subpoenas for former White House employees as the probe into last year's firings of eight U.S. attorneys was ratcheted to a new level. They are the first subpoenas issued for former White House employees since the U.S. Justice Department dismissed seven of those lawyers in December.

- CNN White House Correspondent Ed Henry

Filed under: Alberto Gonzales • President Bush
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. erika morgan black dimond wa

    In a democracy in order for the voters, "Sovereign Citizens" to be able to make proper informed decisions about how they will be governed, they must have full and complete access to a transparent honest forthright process.

    For a representative democracy to work we expect ALL our representative to intimately involved in every decision, be made aware of every fact and conjecture, be fully informed; so when they vote for "US" we can have confidence that they are properly honoring our needs and wishes. This means even in the time of war we must have the full congress advised completely by the Pentagon, CIA, FBI, Homeland security and the Executive Office.

    There are indeed a few times when matters pertaining to particulars of personnel discipline ( i.e. you have an employee who needs to be asked to bathe more frequently) when executive privilege is expected. However matters of governance or governing (i.e. that same employee needs to follow the personnel manuel in dealing with office matters) need to be part of the public record, and should be reported in the news.

    The truth is during the recent history in this country we have done just the opposite. Clinton's indiscretion with the naive, young, impressionable Monica should have been handled internally by asking him to seek counseling and pay for counseling for Monica and her family, especially to protect this young girl, a private citizen. Bush's withholding of records and documents from the designated oversight is clearly wrong as it precludes us from the clear transparent governance to which our Constitution gives us an INALIENABLE right.

    It really is time for some articles of Impeachment or our way of life and experiment in democracy will continue to crumble about our feet like some petrified soiled diaper. And this civilization will have what it deserves.

    July 9, 2007 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  2. indy911truth Indianapolis, IN

    Oh the pressure of the first comment! Here we go: Look people, this issue is of little signifigance if you think about the fact that we're in a war because of carefully crafted lies, starting with 9/11 and the fact that we are bombarded everyday with propaganda from Faux News that would make Himmler blush, and the fact that we still don't know why Bin Laden hasn't been charged with what happened on 9/11. Check it out, he's never been indicted because THE FBI DOESN'T HAVE A CASE AGAINST HIM!!! BUT WHO WOULD THEIR CASE BE AGAINST???

    July 9, 2007 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  3. Ann Brunswick ME

    Get over it already.

    July 9, 2007 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  4. Mike, Corpus Christi Texas

    The Bush Administration "aint gonna surrender anything." To finally get to the bottom of their corruption, its going to take impeachment procedures, and that idea is still pending. I'm not all that convinced that when the Speaker of the House said, 'impeachment is off the table', that she was being totally honest. Both sides of the isle play politics, that's the name of the game in DC., like it or not, they play 'hard ball' in that town, and DC is a tough town!

    July 10, 2007 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  5. Rick, Chicago Illinois

    Ann Brunswick ME .. "get over it already"?

    Yeah ... just get over the unprecedented selective dismissals for “performance related” reasons after favorable job reviews; Gonzales caught lying; Dubya asking for oath-less and transcript-less testimony behind closed doors; Dubya using executive privilege to protect White House aids and DOJ officials from having to testify; others promising to plead the 5th and then abruptly resigning; trying to hide e-mails about government business by using unofficial e-mail accounts; conveniently misplacing e-mails on the correct accounts; Goodling admitting she broke civil service laws by inappropriately taking political considerations into account; Sampson saying Gonzales testimony was “innacurate”; Goodling saying Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty’s testimony was "not fully candid"; and Gonzales selectively fuzzy recollection during his own testimony.

    Just "get over" the REAL reason the attorneys were let go – politics. I'm sure you can imagine the HUGE blow it strikes to the public’s faith in the impartiality of the justice system in America when people start thinking maybe our legal system is operated via partisan rather than legal motives .. but hey .. just get over it!

    After all, it's only the county’s faith in their own legal system (supposedly the most fair and just in the world) that is being destroyed by those who run it!

    No wonder your posts get deleted!

    July 10, 2007 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |