July 31st, 2007
06:02 PM ET
12 years ago

Democrats call for Gonzales impeachment

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Some House Democrats are calling for impeachment hearings against Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to begin in the House Judiciary Committee unless he voluntarily resigns or is dismissed by President Bush.

"There is a national embarrassment in the United States attorney general's office," said Rep Jay Inslee, D-Washington, the resolution's author. "It needs to be remedied. And if the president does not do his clear job, we will do ours."

Inslee and 14 other Democrats introduced a resolution Tuesday ordering the House Judiciary Committee to "investigate whether Alberto R. Gonzales, attorney general of the United States, should be impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors."

The measure's sponsors cite Gonzales' controversial testimony last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the domestic surveillance program and the firing of several United States attorneys as adequate grounds for impeachment hearings.

"An investigation will root out all the details and will move us in the right direction," said Rep Ben Chandler, D-Kentucky.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer did not explicitly support the resolution, but said it "reflects significant sentiment in Congress and around the country. Alberto Gonzales has not been candid and truthful with the Congress of the United States and the American people."

Unlike the House Judiciary Committee's recent contempt of Congress charges against White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten and former White House Counsel Harriet Miers, intervention by the Department of Justice would not be needed for an impeachment investigation, supporters of the measure say.

"The president thinks he has a checkmate over democracy," Inslee said. "Well, he cannot checkmate an impeachment inquiry. This is the tool in the toolbox we can use."

A spokesman for the House Judiciary Committee did not say if the resolution will be taken up by the committee when Congress returns from August recess.

–CNN Congressional Producer Evan Glass

Filed under: Alberto Gonzales • House
soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. Matt, Boston, MA

    Can you name one administration official that does not have a cloud of suspicion around them? This is the most secretive, living on the edge of the law administration that I have ever seen. I say it's about time someone in the executive branch was actually held to a standard of decency, justice, and competence.

    August 1, 2007 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  2. Glenn,B'ham,Al

    Dont these people have a job to do?

    August 1, 2007 08:47 am at 8:47 am |
  3. rada, Houston, Texas

    it's about time... AG needs to go....

    August 1, 2007 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  4. Rob, San Diego CA


    Didn't Senator Arlen Specter and several other prominent Republican members of the House and Senate call for Gonzales to resign? I suppose they're a joke too?

    August 1, 2007 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  5. Rick Monson

    This part of their job. Off with the lying lawyers, Cheneyites, and sneaky Bushies.

    August 1, 2007 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  6. J Jackson Tallahassee Fl.

    He needs to go and take Bush and Chainy with him.

    August 1, 2007 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  7. Melinda, Texas

    To Glen in B'ham, yes they do have a job to do and for the first time in 7 years, they are actually doing it. It's about time we saw some real oversight and not just puppets running Congress. I'm sure, if you're "one of them," you think Gonzeles is doing a heck of a job, just like Brownie did!!

    August 1, 2007 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  8. ThisCongressSuks

    They have nothing better to do??

    August 1, 2007 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  9. P. Esh McKinleyville, CA

    I have never understood when congress is investigating officials for wrong doings some people object to it. Calling it a waste of time and congress should be doing more important things. What is more important than to make sure the officials we place in office is doing the job they were hired to do? Even if the investigation didn't pan out. The congress is still making sure they are a stable institution. Sorry to beat a dead horse, but if congress can impeach a President for lying about sexual affairs I think we can start a impeachment process on whether the Attorney General or anyone else has commited any crimes.

    August 1, 2007 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  10. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    "I think we can start a impeachment process on whether the Attorney General or anyone else has commited any crimes."

    Folks – can ANYONE tell us what crime was committed that began this whole investigation?

    Albert Gonzales can be called bumbling, incoherent – whatever you like... but a "criminal" won't stick. He is on solid legal ground (as is the President) for firing ANY US attorney for WHATEVER reason they decide.

    Gonzales will not be impeached. Nor will President Bush or Chaney. Democrats will be exposed for their true motive – vengence. Mad because Bush was elected twice, Mad because Clinton was impeached (proven perjury and obstructed justice by the way).

    Yes this is what Americans want – congress playing tit-for-tat.

    August 1, 2007 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  11. John, Charlotte NC

    When this thing first started, I assumed that Gonzo was lying about what he knew, or was so incompetent that he had no idea what people who worked directly for him were doing, or was just so stupid that he would sign anything that those people gave him. As it turns out, he hit the trifecta - he's all 3 – a liar, incompetent, AND stupid!!

    August 1, 2007 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  12. Raphael, Bristow, BA

    Congress should impeach Gonzalez and use what they learn in the process to prepare for the impeachment of the Vice President and eventually the President.

    August 1, 2007 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
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