WH Seeks to Delay Answering Congressional Subpoenas

August 7, 2008 2:38 p.m.
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Nothing can ever be easy with these two.

The Justice Department, on behalf of Harriet Miers and Joshua Bolten, filed its request for appeal today in the July 31 ruling in House Judiciary Committee v. Miers et al.

While the appeal is resolved, however, the DOJ also requested that the judge grant a stay on the subpoenas, allowing Miers and Bolten to continue to evade the House Judiciary Committee.

From the AP:

Without a quick stay of the ruling, Miers and Bolten may be forced to testify before an appeal can be heard, the two said in a court filing. Democrats have announced they would schedule hearings in September, at the height of election season.

“Whatever the proper resolution of the extraordinarily important questions presented, the public interest clearly favors further consideration of issues before defendants are required to take actions that may forever alter the constitutional balance of separation of powers,” the Bolten and Miers request said.

A stay would also benefit Republicans, since the subpoenas expire at the end of the year, not long before Bush leaves office.

Late Update
: Also today, White House Counsel Fred Fielding sent a letter to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, saying that despite the court order last week, the White House will wait for the outcome of its appeal before responding to further subpoena request.

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