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Cheney's future at stake after leaking of CIA agent's name (yeah, sure)
The Guardian (U.K.) ^ | 02/11/04 | Julian Borger

Posted on 02/10/2004 8:49:31 PM PST by Pokey78

Vice President Dick Cheney's political future was at stake yesterday in Washington, where a grand jury investigation was questioning administration officials about his office's role in leaking the name of a CIA operative for political motives. The inquiry has already questioned the president's spokesman and one of his media advisers over the identification of Valerie Plame, which is developing into one of the administration's main headaches in an election year.

However, informed sources said last night that three of the five officials who are the real targets of the probe work or worked for Mr Cheney.

Until recently, President Bush has insisted that Mr Cheney would be his vice-presidential candidate in the November elections, despite his history of heart trouble.

But recent polls conducted by the White House have suggested that growing unpopularity of the taciturn ex-businessman and powerful administration hawk threatens to sink the president.

Mr Cheney is already under intense fire from Democrats for his personal role in shaping the case for war against Iraq, frequently visiting the CIA to question assessments that played down Saddam Hussein's arsenal.

His former role as head of a giant oil services corporation, Halliburton, is also under scrutiny, as the company is under investigation for bribery when Mr Cheney was in charge and, more recently for war-profiteering in Iraq.

But the grand jury investigation into the CIA leak is potentially the most explosive threat to his long-term political survival.

The case centres around the leaking to the press in July of the name of Valerie Plame, apparently in response to public questioning of the US case for war against Iraq by her husband, Joseph Wilson, a former ambassador.

The leaking of an undercover agent's identity is a serious crime under US law. The hearings are leading justice department investigators towards the vice president's office, according to a source familiar with the investigation.

"Three of the five people who are targets work or worked in Cheney's office," the source said.

He added that members of the defence policy board, a Pentagon advisory group, are also under scrutiny. Sensing the danger to the administration, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman, Terry McCauliffe issued a statement to say: "Now that the FBI is getting closer to finding out who inside the Bush White House put the lives of CIA agents in danger, we hope that President Bush will keep his word and hold accountable those responsible for the White House leak - no matter how high their post."

The chief White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, outlined the president's position. "The leak of classified information is a very serious matter," he said

A parallel grand jury is looking into the forgery of a document that surfaced in Italy before the war, purporting to show Iraqi attempts to buy uranium in Niger. Despite doubts over its authenticity, the document underpinned US and British claims, since proved groundless, that Saddam was reconstituting his nuclear weapons programme.

A third grand jury in Washington is looking into allegations that a Halliburton subsidiary paid $180m in bribes to secure lucrative contracts to build a gas plant in Nigeria, at the time Mr Cheney was chief executive, from 1995 to 2000.

More recently the corporation has been caught overcharging millions of dollars for the delivery of petrol to the US military in Iraq.

The vice president claims to have severed his ties with the controversial company but he continues to receive payments of about $150,000 a year in tax-minimising "deferred compensation" from his time as an executive.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Government; News/Current Events; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: cheney; cialeak; dreamon; wishfulthinking

1 posted on 02/10/2004 8:49:35 PM PST by Pokey78
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To: Pokey78
He needs to take one for the party and fake a heart attack. Giuliani is warming up in the bullpen.
2 posted on 02/10/2004 8:52:25 PM PST by ambrose ("John Kerry has blood of American soldiers on his hands" - Lt. Col. Oliver North)
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To: Pokey78
I have a question for all the people who say they would bolt if Cheney is taken off the ticket. Which Republicans could Bush replace him with and still keep your vote? Cheney can't be the ABSOLUTE best possible person for the job.
3 posted on 02/10/2004 8:53:38 PM PST by Democratshavenobrains
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To: Pokey78
Lots of non-news in this article, just innuendo.
4 posted on 02/10/2004 8:53:53 PM PST by Utah Girl
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To: Pokey78
There is absolutely no evidence that Cheney had anything to do with "the leak".

This is just more Dem smear tactic.
5 posted on 02/10/2004 8:54:44 PM PST by FairOpinion (If you are not voting for Bush, you are voting for the terrorists.)
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To: Utah Girl; Pokey78
"Three of the five people who are targets

The guy that comes on with John Gibson on Fox News, starts with an N, say that the people being questioned have been told that there are NO targets, that they are trying to see IF there is a target.

And NOBODY has been notified that they are a target of this investigation, period.

6 posted on 02/10/2004 8:57:00 PM PST by Howlin
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To: Democratshavenobrains
Actually Cheney IS the best possible person for the job.

He has done a tremendous amount behind the scenes. Bush has his hands full and it meant a lot to have someone supercompetent he can trust with some of the important things that need doing.

If he couldn't have Cheney, Bush would have to "make do" with someone else, but in today's critical times Cheney IS the absolute best for the role he is in.
7 posted on 02/10/2004 8:57:19 PM PST by FairOpinion (If you are not voting for Bush, you are voting for the terrorists.)
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To: Utah Girl
What happened to the enemy "neoconservatives"? Now the panacea/hate-object is Cheney?
8 posted on 02/10/2004 8:57:32 PM PST by Shermy
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To: FairOpinion
What I see here are the very reasons why George W. Bush would keep Cheney on the ticket.
9 posted on 02/10/2004 8:58:00 PM PST by Howlin
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To: Howlin
Are you thinking of Judge Napolitano?
10 posted on 02/10/2004 8:59:56 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: FairOpinion
I don't have anything against Cheney, but a VP's first job is to help his boss get elected. Did anyone vote for Gore solely because of Lieberman? No, and we should thank God Gore made that bad choice because if he had picked a Floridian, he might have won.
11 posted on 02/10/2004 9:02:00 PM PST by Democratshavenobrains
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To: Verginius Rufus
Yes. Thanks.
12 posted on 02/10/2004 9:02:51 PM PST by Howlin
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To: Utah Girl
Lots of non-news in this article, just innuendo.

Heck, most of it was outright fabrication.

13 posted on 02/10/2004 9:04:49 PM PST by CarryaBigStick
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To: CarryaBigStick
its the Guardian, they just take AP/reuters/Nytimes stories and flesh it out.
14 posted on 02/10/2004 9:10:42 PM PST by Pikamax
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To: ambrose
Pro-abortion VP? Good way to lose.
15 posted on 02/10/2004 9:12:42 PM PST by Finalapproach29er ("Don't shoot Mongo, you'll only make him mad.")
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To: ambrose
Get a grip!
Cheney is almost as attractive and politically potent as Rumsfield.
President Bush assembled a winning team.
As long as Bush, Cheney, Rice, Powell and Rumsfield are on the same team, serendipity rules!
If Cheney-Halliburton ties trouble you, what do you think of Kerry-Enron-Jane Fonda?
Last I checked, Halliburton was still viable...


16 posted on 02/10/2004 9:13:11 PM PST by sarasmom (No war for oil=Give France/Russia/China etc oil ,and no war-or so Saddam thought.)
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To: Pikamax
And that flesh is dead,rancid, & putrified.
17 posted on 02/10/2004 9:14:12 PM PST by CarryaBigStick
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To: Pokey78
This whole thing is out of hand. Ms. Plume for the most part exposed herself and her CIA front company when she made a campaign donation in 2000 to Gore. Why in the Hell would CIA rules even permit this?
Also it is known that Novak wrote that article. I believe that as a high profile newsman he probably, without his knowledge of course, has all of his phone calls, e-mail, etc. recorded by the NSA. So just ask them, they know.
If worse comes to worse, just strap Novak in a chair and start shooting off his toes till he talks.
As the saying goes "Only the Toes Know", Now who said that???
18 posted on 02/10/2004 9:16:58 PM PST by Captain Peter Blood
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To: ambrose
What is wrong with you? You are buying this sh&!?
19 posted on 02/10/2004 9:18:17 PM PST by Mike Darancette (Bush Bot by choice)
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To: Pokey78
Cheney, in my opinion, is the the only true conservative in the upper echelons on the Bush administration. He must stay!
20 posted on 02/10/2004 9:18:39 PM PST by Schattie (-censored-)
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To: ambrose
I think that's where the smart money is. It's George/Rudy for 2004.
21 posted on 02/11/2004 12:35:03 AM PST by Dr. Eckleburg (There are very few shades of gray.)
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To: ambrose
I think he will and should, but not for any reason in this article. This is strictly wishful thinking for the usual suspects.
22 posted on 02/11/2004 12:46:27 AM PST by HitmanLV (I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed or numbered. My life is my own.)
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To: Democratshavenobrains
Actually, it is likely that Gore did as well in Florida as he did because of his choice of Lieberman as a running mate. In addition, he received a huge boost in the national polls after his choice.
23 posted on 02/11/2004 1:07:11 AM PST by Nathaniel Fischer (Herman Cain for Senate!)
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