Pontificators of conventional wisdom in Washington have been warning Democrats not to overreach in their probe of why 8 US Attorneys were unexpectedly fired last December. “It seems doubtful that Democrats can help themselves a great deal just by tearing down an already discredited Republican administration with more investigations such as the current attack on the Justice Department and White House over the firings of eight U.S. attorneys,” Washington Post columnist David Broder wrote on Sunday.
Broder’s an astute analyst of polling, so let’s hope he sees the latest USA Today poll on Attorneygate [see questions 14-16]. Seventy-two percent of the public believes Congress should investigate the involvement of White House officials. When asked how the Bush Administration should respond to a Congressional probe, 68 percent of respondents want top officials to “answer all questions.” The same number believe White House aides should testify under oath.
It seems pretty clear cut what the public wants Congress to do on this front. Of course they’d like Democrats to try and pass substantial pieces of legislation (even though President Bush will probably veto them). But they also realize that after six years of one-party rule, a measure of accountability is long overdue.