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Oversight Committee postpones Rice hearing to make way for Tenet deposition
Michael Roston
Published: Monday May 14, 2007
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Former Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet has agreed to sit with the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform for a deposition on the evidence used to build the case for the invasion of Iraq. As a consequence, the Committee has postponed a hearing planned this week with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who had been subpoenaed.

"Today Chairman Henry A. Waxman announced that the Oversight Committee will postpone the hearing with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from May 15, 2007, to June 19,2007. The hearing is being postponed to allow former CIA Director George Tenet to testify with Secretary Rice and to accommodate Secretary Rice's travel schedule," the Committee said in a statement released Monday morning.

However, Waxman's release made it clear that he was still uncertain the Secretary of State would agree to testify.

"Chairman Waxman continues to expect that she will comply with the congressional subpoena," the statement noted in conclusion.

A recent Rasmussen poll found that 43% of Americans want Rice to comply with Waxman's subpoena, with 22% saying she should not. The same poll found that about as many Americans (40% to 39%) believed that Waxman's probe sought to embarrass the Bush administration as those who thought the California Democrat was seeking the truth behind the Iraq War.

The full statement is presented below.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 14,2007

Rice Testimony Postponted

Tenet to Cooperate in Committee Investigation

WASHINGTON, DC - Today Chairman Henry A. Waxman announced that the Oversight Committee will postpone the hearing with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from May 15, 2007, to June 19,2007. The hearing is being postponed to allow former CIA Director George Tenet to testify with Secretary Rice and to accommodate Secretary Rice's travel schedule.

Mr. Tenet has agreed to cooperate with the Committee's inquiry into whether the White House overstated Iraq's efforts to obtain uranium from Africa and its nuclear threat in making the case for war. Mr. Tenet has agreed to provide a deposition to the Committee prior to the hearing.

The Committee also sent a letter to Stephen Hadley, the National Security Advisor, requesting his voluntary appearance at a deposition. Mr. Hadley was the Deputy National Security Advisor and Secretary Rice was the National Security Advisor when the President relied on evidence, which turned out to be false, about Iraq's efforts to obtain uranium in his 2003 State of the Union address.

Secretary Rice refused repeated requests by Chairman Waxman to testify voluntarily before the Committee, leading the Committee to issue a subpoena for her appearance. Chairman Waxman continues to expect that she will comply with the congressional subpoena.