Bush aide's House testimony temporarily halted

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A federal appeals court is temporarily blocking former White House counsel Harriet Miers from testifying about the firing of nine U.S. attorneys.

In its ruling yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said it wants to review arguments from both Congress and the Bush administration over whether its judges have jurisdiction to rule in the case.

Miers had been supposed to testify at a House Judiciary Committee hearing next Thursday.

The House committee wants Miers to testify and White House chief of staff Josh Bolten to turn over documents related to the 2006 prosecutor firings, which Democrats contend were politically motivated.

The Justice Department says Congress can't force top White House aides to testify because it infringes on the executive branch's independence.
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