There are two different ways to see yesterday’s hearing:
1) It was a bloodbath. Four different Republican senators on the judiciary committee severely criticized Gonzales, and one Republican senator even told Alberto Gonzales, right to his face, that he should resign.
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) said “Your ability to lead the Department of Justice is in question. I wish that were not so, but I think it certainly is.” Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC), seeming almost dismissive of Gonzales, said “Sometimes, it just came down to these were not the right people at the right time. If I applied that standard to you, what would you say?” Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) made it clear that he thought Gonzales should resign, but stopped just short of calling for his resignation. And Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), of course, didn’t stop short. That’s four of the nine Republicans on the panel.
2) Only one Republican senator told Gonzales that he should resign.
Can you guess which one represents the Gonzales worldview? From The Washington Post:
A Justice Department official said last night that Gonzales’s aides consider the lone Republican call for his resignation yesterday a “positive barometer.”
“While we realize Senate Republicans are not happy, they are willing to stick with the attorney general,” said the official, who spoke about members of Congress on the condition of anonymity.
The panel is half full, you could say.