Bush 'to name Gonzales replacement'

President set to nominate retired conserative judge as new attorney-general.

    Mukasey could be a consensus candidate
    for the role of attorney-general [AP]

    A senior Republican aide said that Mukasey came into consideration after Harry Reid, the senate Democratic leader, vowed last week to block a potential nominee, Theodore Olson, a former US solicitor general, on the grounds he was seen as being too partisan.
     
    Consensus candidate
     
    Michael Mukasey

    - Worked in federal prosecutor's office in New York, 

    including under Rudy Giuliani, the current Republican presidential candidate and the city's ex-mayor.

    - Nominated to the federal bench in 1987 by Ronald Reagan, then US president.

    - Presided over case in which Omar Abdel Rahman, known as the "blind sheikh", and a dozen others were linked to the 1993 bombing of the US World Trade Centre.

    Sources: Reuters, The Washington Post, The New York Times

    Olson, who represented Bush in the US Supreme Court case that settled the contested 2000 presidential election, had been widely viewed as the top contender.
     
    Charles Schumer, the Democratic senator who led the drive to force Gonzales out, said Mukasey has the potential to become a consensus nominee.
     
    "While he is certainly conservative, judge Mukasey seems to be the kind of nominee who would put rule of law first and show independence from the White House," Schumer said in a statement.
     
    "For sure, we'd want to ascertain his approach on such important and sensitive issues as wiretapping and the appointment of US attorneys, but he's a lot better than some of the other names mentioned."
     
    Gonzales quit after both Democratic and Republican legislators challenged his truthfulness and ability to do his job as the head of US law enforcement.
     
    Gonzales came under criticism for his dismissal last year of nine federal prosecutors and his handling of Bush's domestic spying programme, which has been criticised as unlawful.
     
    Mukasey, appointed as a district judge for the southern district of New York, retired last year after nearly two decades of service.
     
    He had earlier served as a federal prosecutor in New York.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    We visualised 1.2 million votes at the UN since 1946. What do you think are the biggest issues facing the world today?

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.