Attorney General Alberto Gonzales's hold on his job is slipping after President George W. Bush, his chief benefactor, said he has some explaining to do and others, including a Republican senator, called for him to step down.
The political uproar over the Justice Department's handling of the dismissal of eight U.S. attorneys continued yesterday as Bush ordered Gonzales to Capitol Hill to patch up relations with lawmakers. Members of Congress say they were misled by Gonzales, who termed the dismissals non-political before administration e- mails released this week showed the White House was behind the ousters.
Senator John Sununu of New Hampshire became the first Republican in Congress to call on the president to fire Gonzales, saying yesterday the controversy harmed his ability to run the Justice Department. While Bush said he supported his attorney general, Gonzales found few defenders among other Republicans.