Pressure mounted on Alberto Gonzales yesterday as FBI director Robert Mueller directly contradicted the attorney general in testimony before the House Judiciary Committee. Mueller and Gonzales gave dramatically different accounts about whether the Justice department's secret eavesdropping program was the subject of the now-legendary nighttime confrontation at the hospital bedside of then-Attorney General John Ashcroft.
Mueller said yesterday it was; Gonzales insisted the day before it wasn't. Democrats called on the Justice Department to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate whether Gonzales lied. "He tells the half truth, the partial truth and anything but the truth," quipped Sen. Charles Schumer. A Justice Department spokesman said that "confusion is inevitable when complicated classified activities are discussed in a public forum."