April 19, 2007

CONTACT: media@dcaclu.org

WASHINGTON — As the Senate Judiciary Committee met today to discuss Department of Justice oversight, the American Civil Liberties Union urged Senators to ask tough questions of the sole witness, U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

The following can be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

"Judging by its leader’s complete disregard for the Constitution and the rule of law, the Department of Justice is a contradiction in terms. Attorney General Gonzales may be responsible for the ongoing U.S. Attorney firings, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg.

"Attorney General Gonzales’ failure to level with Congress and the American people on DOJ activities — warrantless wiretapping of innocent Americans, the egregious misuse of national security letters and the politicization of the DOJ’s Voting Rights Division — is a symptom of a larger problem. We need a Department of Justice that will function on behalf of the American people not this administration’s narrow political agenda."

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