The Justice Department has released Alberto Gonzales' written statement for Tuesday's hearing, which was provided today to the Senate Judiciary Committee. We've posted the entire section concerning the U.S. attorneys below.
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The statement is long on promises and short on specifics, and Gonzales' narrative for how the firings occurred is a very simple one: he tasked Kyle Sampson with it, had a handful of conversations about it over the course of two years, and then eventually signed off on the firings.
Nevertheless, there are a couple of noteworthy passages.
First, Gonzales says again that (as far as he knows, at least) none of the U.S. attorneys were fired for "improper" reasons -- which would be "in order to impede or speed along particular criminal investigations for illegitimate reasons." But he says that "it is clear to me that I should have done more personally to ensure that the review process was more rigorous." That's an admission that's sure to open him up to some battering from senators on the panel.
Second, he again says that he "misspoke" at a press conference on March 13th when he said "I was not involved in any discussions about what was going on.â That statement, he says, "was too broad." He regrets the confusion, he says.
The entire thing is below....