Attorney General Gonzales Faces a Tough Week

Embattled Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is getting no break from the controversy surrounding his dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys.

On the Sunday talk shows, Democrats said they had no confidence in his ability to lead. Republicans refused to defend him.

"Ultimately, this is a decision up to the president and the attorney general, as to whether he will continue in that position," said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, on ABC News' "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."

"I'm reserving judgment on that, until we finish the inquiry," Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., ranking GOP member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on "Fox News Sunday."

"I think it's highly unlikely he survives," remarked Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., during an interview with NBC's "Meet the Press." "I wouldn't be surprised if a week from now, he's no longer attorney general. … Instead of just being the president's lawyer who rubber stamps everything the White House wants, he has a role as attorney general as the chief law enforcement officer of the land without fear or favor."

On Monday, the Justice Department is expected to release more documents detailing the role Gonzales, Justice Department officials and the White House played in the firings.

On Tuesday, the White House is expected to announce whether it will allow former White House counsel Harriet Miers and Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove to testify before Congress.

If they don't, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee promises subpoenas.

"I want testimony under oath," Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., said on "This Week." "I am sick and tired of getting half-truths on this."

U.S. attorneys serve at the pleasure of the president. But the Bush administration got itself into trouble by claiming the dismissals were solely performance-related. The White House did not disclose its own involvement until e-mails surfaced suggesting political loyalty may have played a role.

Adding to the questions, the Seattle Times reported that one of the candidates Republicans submitted to replace the fired U.S. attorney in Washington state isn't even licensed to practice law in the state. Former Rep. Rick White hasn't paid $390 in bar dues and needs to complete 20 to 30 hours of continuing legal education before he can reclaim his license.

This news may give even more momentum to an effort to change a little-noticed provision in the Patriot Act that gave the president power to appoint U.S. attorneys without congressional oversight.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is submitting a bill Monday that will change the law so that Senate confirmation is required.

"This is what prevents people from coming in who aren't qualified, for people coming in who are political operatives," said Feinstein on CBS' "Face the Nation."

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