Washington (CNN) - The Senate reaches a decision in the showdown over eight fired US attorneys.
Thursday lawmakers on the Senate Judiciary Committee authorized the use of subpoenas for top White House staff.
They want aides to go on record about what they call politically-motivated firings.
But, this power does not mean that subpoenas will be issued; rather the aides could be forced to testify if they do not voluntarily appear before the committee.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Patrick Leahy, made the vote official.
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales admits mistakes were made in how the firings were handled.
The White House has offered to allow the aides to meet with lawmakers in private, and without a transcript, but says it will fight any effort for what it calls a "spectacle."
WVLT Volunteer TV is a CNN affiliate.