The Contempt Showdown Resumes

Given the amount of time that has passed since Miers and Bolten were cited for contempt of Congress, I eventually came to the conclusion that it was probably for the best that the humiliatingly toothless citation faded from our collective memory.

Well, the game is back on. Now that the contempt resolution was passed by the house a couple of weeks ago, Nancy Pelosi is pointedly telling USAG Mukasey that if he tries to set up road blocks and play protect-the-prez, the House will simply shove him out of the way and throw down a law suit:
There is no authority by which persons may wholly ignore a subpoena and fail to appear as directed because a President unilaterally instructs them to do so. Even if a subpoenaed witness intends to assert a privilege in response to questions, the witness is not at liberty to disregard the subpoena and fail to appear at the required time and place. Surely, your Department would not tolerate that type of action if the witness were subpoenaed to a federal grand jury. Short of a formal assertion of executive privilege, which cannot be made in this case, there is no authority that permits a President to advise anyone to ignore a duly issued congressional subpoena for documents.

Your press spokesman has stated that you will “act promptly” to review this matter and reach a final decision. We will appreciate your acting with appropriate dispatch on this important matter. I strongly urge you to reconsider your position and to ensure that our nation is operating under the rule of law and not at presidential whim. If, however, you intend to persist in preventing Mr. Taylor from carrying out his statutory obligation to present this matter to the grand jury in the District of Columbia, we respectfully request that you inform us of that decision within one week from today, so that the House may proceed with a civil enforcement suit in federal district court.
Considering how long it's taken to get just to this point, I don't hold much hope that a law suit, if deemed necessary, would even get started until later this year, if at all.

Still, it makes for interesting theatre. And, it's nice to see something get under the skin of Bush and his minions, especially when they thought it went away.

[H/T to TPMMuckraker]

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