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Gonzales taps White House lawyers as aides

[JURIST] Incoming US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales [official profile] has added to his DOJ [official website] staff three of his former aides from the White House Counsel's office. When he took over earlier this month as Attorney General, Gonzales brought with him Theodore Ullyot, Raul Yanes, and Kyle Sampson, all of whom worked under him for the past four years, The hirings only add to questions about whether Gonzales can distance himself from President Bush, with whom he has had a close working and personal relationship for many years. While admitting that as a Cabinet member he is a member of the president's "team", Gonzales vowed in remarks at his swearing-in this morning [White House transcript; JURIST report] to be mindful of his duty as representative of the American people, and to keep his first allegiance to upholding the US Constitution. Republican lawmakers have lauded Gonzales' hirings, while Democrats pledged themselves to not judge Gonzales' ability to be separate himself from the White House based only on the hiring of aides. AP has more.

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