[JURIST] White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales, President Bush's nominee for Attorney General, explicitly told the Senate Judiciary Committee this morning that "torture and abuse would not be tolerated" under his leadership of the Justice Department, that the Geneva Conventions would be honored "wherever they apply", and that the US generally would abide by all (orally emphasizing the word) its legal obligations under treaty. He said that, contrary to press reports based on a January 2002 draft memo he considered, he considered the Conventions "neither obsolete nor quaint", and that he was "sickened" by photos of Iraqi prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib. His specific references to torture, the Geneva Conventions and Abu Ghraib came a day after publication of a draft version of his remarks which, as noted in JURIST's Paper Chase Wednesday afternoon, had omitted any reference to these areas, likely to be the focus of close questioning by Judiciary Committee members later today.
JURIST is providing extended front page coverage of the Gonzales confirmation hearing today, including an exclusive pre-testimony op-ed Against Gonzales by Admiral John Hutson (USN Ret.), former Navy Judge Advocate General, now Dean and President of Franklin Piece Law Center, Concord, New Hampshire.
12:15 PM ET – Some written materials from today's confirmation hearing are now available online. Read ranking Democrat Patrick Leahy's statement here.