Bush fully confident in attorney general


Published: Saturday March 31, 2007

US President George W. Bush on Saturday reiterated his support for embattled Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, under fire for his alleged role in the dismissal of eight US prosecutors.

Gonzales is an "honorable and honest man. He has my full confidence," Bush told a news conference at his Camp David, Maryland retreat.

"There is no credible evidence that there has been any wrongdoing," Bush added.

Democrats in Congress have pressed for Gonzales's resignation after evidence from e-mails and a top former aide implicated the long-time Bush ally in the sacking late last year of eight US attorneys for what Democrats claim were political reasons.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is investigating why the US attorneys were fired, even as several of them were in the middle of sensitive corruption investigations, and to what extent Gonzales and the White House were involved in their removal.

Gonzales has denied being deeply involved in the matter.

But last Thursday his former chief of staff Kyle Sampson told the committee that Gonzales, who leads the Department of Justice, was involved.

"I and others made staff recommendations but they were approved and signed off on by the principals," Sampson said.

Sampson resigned nearly three weeks ago after the Justice Department released e-mail records that showed him in close contact with senior White House officials over the sackings.