Mukasey Open to Spy Bill Deal

AG calls for 'creative' solution to debate on phone company lawsuits
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2008 8:18 PM CDT
Attorney General Michael Mukasey, left, and President Bush are seen in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2007, during a photo opportunity with the recipients of the...   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – The nation's top lawman welcomed a deal today on a stalled federal spy bill, Reuters reports. “If somebody has some brilliantly creative compromise, I'm happy to hear that,” Attorney General Michael Mukasey said. A recent House bill would allow lawsuits against phone companies that gave records to Washington, but Bush has vowed to veto it.

GOP lawmakers would like the House to pass the Senate version, which grants immunity to phone companies, but Mukasey is seeking middle ground. “We’re willing and happy to work with Congress,” he told reporters. He added that intelligence gathering was affected for "a couple days" due to the delay. "I hope it wasn’t anything vital,” he said.