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A federal grand jury has subpoenaed several former senior Justice Department attorneys for an investigation into the politicization of the Department's own Civil Rights Division, according to sources close to the investigation.
The extraordinary step by the Justice Department of subpoenaing attorneys once from within its own ranks was taken because several of them refused to voluntarily give interviews to the Department Inspector General, which has been conducting its own probe of the politicization of the Civil Rights Division, the same sources said.
The grand jury has been investigating allegations that a former senior Bush administration appointee in the Civil Rights Division, Bradley Schlozman, gave false or misleading testimony on a variety of topics to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Sources close to the investigation say that the grand jury is also more broadly examining whether Schlozman and other Department officials violated civil service laws by screening Civil Rights attorneys for political affiliation while hiring them.