Congressional leaders demanded that the Attorney General resign following recent revelations of missteps. One leading senator said on CNN's "Late Edition" that the Justice Department is "in a shambles" because of poor management. The department "doesn't reply with the requests of Congress" and invokes "phony issues of executive privilege."
"If [the latest revelation] is true," he said, "either the attorney general has ignored the evidence or is incompetent, or ... evidence has been withheld by people within the department."
But on ABC's "This Week," a top minority senator defended the Attorney General and discouraged majority calls for hearings. "I do find there's sort of a little double standard . . . my worry is that congressional investigations will bring up a lot of heat and not much light," he said.
The leading minority member of the House Judiciary Committee also defended the Attorney General, whom "is now being blamed” for what someone else didn't do, he said on NBC's "Meet the Press."
Majority leaders say this is only the latest incident in which the Attorney General has stonewalled congressional inquiries, claiming to be unaware of all the facts. Congress has clashed over two other recent matters involving the Attorney General.
Of course, the CNN report is dated September 5, 1999, the sixth year of the Clinton administration. Chuck Schumer (pictured in 1999 with the then-First Lady) isn’t calling for the Attorney General’s resignation. No, he’s defending Janet Reno against Republican calls for her resignation.