WASHINGTON - The House Judiciary Committee yesterday subpoenaed former White House top political adviser Karl Rove to testify about whether the White House improperly meddled with the Justice Department.

Accusations of politics influencing decisions at the department led to last year's resignation of former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

The subpoena issued orders Rove to testify before the House panel on July 10. He is expected to face questions about the White House's role in firing nine U.S. attorneys in 2006.

House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers had negotiated with Rove's attorneys for more than a year over whether the former top aide to President Bush would testify voluntarily.

"It is unfortunate that Mr. Rove has failed to cooperate with our requests," Conyers, D-Mich., said in a statement. "Although he does not seem the least bit hesitant to discuss these very issues weekly on cable television and in the print news media, Mr. Rove and his attorney have apparently concluded that a public hearing room would not be appropriate." *