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Waxman Sets Hearing to Consider Batch of Subpoenas

House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) is ginning up the subpoena mill, scheduling a meeting next week to consider subpoenas in four different investigations of the Bush administration.

Waxman sent four letters today to Republican officials explaining that because the committee has not received sufficient cooperation in several ongoing investigations, the committee will meet April 25 to consider issuing subpoenas.

Ten days ago, Waxman’s office issued a statement to Roll Call noting the restraint with which his committee has wielded its subpoena power.

“The committee is conducting long overdue oversight that has already saved taxpayers millions,” Waxman said at the time. “It has exercised all its powers responsibly. In contrast to the model set by the Republicans during the Clinton administration, when subpoenas were a daily occurrence, the Committee has yet to issue a subpoena.”

That may change next week.

Unless Republicans offer their testimony voluntarily, Waxman’s committee will consider issuing subpoenas for:

• Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice for testimony about her role in President Bush’s now discredited claim that Iraq was seeking to obtain uranium from Niger;

• Former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card for his testimony in regard to the leak of former CIA operative Valerie Plame’s name to the press;

• The Republican National Committee for documents related to RNC e-mail accounts used by White House officials, including Karl Rove;

• And the White House for documents related to a federal contract given to a company that has been implicated in a bribery case.

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