Skip to comments.Prosecute Plame?
Posted on 06/08/2007 10:02:41 AM PDT by Ooh-Ah
U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton wants former vice presidential aide I. Lewis Scooter Libby to go directly to jail, without passing go, and without collecting $200 dollars. And so far, the word from the White House is that President Bush has no intention of giving Libby a Get Out of Jail Free card.
The prospect of a pardon has become so sensitive inside the West Wing that top aides have been kept out of the loop, and even Bush friends have been told not to bring it up with the president, the Washington Post wrote on Wednesday.
If true, thats a pretty sorry comment on the state of the Bush White House, and the state of this presidency, especially given Bushs obsession with demanding total loyalty from his staff. Bushs loyalty is a one-way street.
As I have argued in this space before, Scooter deserves a pardon, now, before he serves a single day in jail.
While Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald a Clinton appointee, lets not forget did succeed in convincing a Washington, DC jury to convict Libby of lying to a grand jury, its also crystal clear that Libby was being questioned about a crime everyone now agrees he did not commit.
Even Judge Walton acknowledged this, noting on Tuesday during the sentencing hearing that the trial did not prove Libby knew that [Valerie] Plame worked in an undercover capacity.
But the trial did prove, beyond any doubt whatsoever, that Libby was not the government official who leaked her name. That honor falls to former deputy secretary of State Richard Armitage, who spilled the beans in an interview with Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward weeks before Libby ever had the conservations Pat Fitzgeralds taxpayer-funded Bush-hunt investigated for 2 1/2 years.
For Walton and Fitzgerald, it made no difference that there was no underlying crime. Libby deserved jail time because he lied about nearly everything that mattered, Fitzgerald said in his sentencing memorandum. Even worse: Fitzgerald claimed at the hearing that Libbys lying uniquely blocked him from learning the full truth about what happened.
Much hot air has been expelled from various parts about the crime of perjury. Writing in the Washington Times the day after Libby was sentenced, Bush critic Bruce Fein said Libby not only deserved jail time, but deserves a stiff prison term to deter his erstwhile Bush administration colleagues, for example, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and White House political guru Karl Rove, from equivocating with Congress and the courts.
Fein, who reminds anyone who will listen that he was a deputy attorney general during the Reagan administration, also supported a Congressional motion of censure against President Bush last year. He believes that sending Libby to jail is imperative also to honor the rule of law, the nations crown jewel.
Well, if perjury is so important and it is, when it concerns an underlying crime then Attorney General Alberto Gonzales should consider appointing a Special Counsel to investigate Valerie Plame.
Why? Because by all appearances, either Val has the memory of a mouse, or she flagrantly perjured herself while testifying under oath before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on March 16, 2007.
Under questioning, Plame insisted that she was not the one who recommended that the CIA send her husband, former U.S. Ambassador Joe Wilson, to Niger in February 2002 to investigate claims that Saddam Hussein was seeking to purchase significant quantities of uranium from Africa.
No. I did not recommend him, she said. I did not suggest him. There was no nepotism involved. I didnt have the authority.
Besides the fact that no one has ever suggested, to my knowledge, that Valerie Plame actually made the decision to send her husband, her statement is pretty straight forward. She neither recommended her husband, or suggested his name.
Perhaps Ms. Plame never expected that anyone would challenge that statement. Perhaps she just assumed that the truth would remain cloaked in secrecy. Perhaps she trusted her friends in Congress to make sure that no evidence contradicting her assertions would ever be released to the public.
When the Senate Select committee on intelligence first investigated the Niger story in a report released in July 2004, it stated flat-out, The plan to send the former ambassador to Niger was suggested by the former ambassadors wife, a CIA employee.
That angered Mr. Wilson, who wrote to the committee shortly afterwards, claiming that this assertion was not true.
Since then, the Senate intelligence committee has gone back to the source, and reviewed yet again many of the intelligence documents that it relied upon for that initial report.
One of those documents was the email from Valerie Plame to her boss at CIA in which she recommended her husband for the Niger trip.
According to Wilson, that memo was little more than a recitation of his contacts and bona fides. But in additional views from intelligence committee vice-chairman Sen. Kit Bond, Sen. Hatch, and Sen. Burr, released on May 25, 2007, they state flat out, This is not true.
And then they drop the bomb. The Committee did not release the full text of the document, thinking it was unnecessary in light of the other evidence provided in the [original] report, but considering the controversy surrounding this document, making the full text available now seems prudent.
The Valerie Plame e-mail, now fully declassified, shows without any doubt that she recommended her husband for the mission in Niger.
After recounting an earlier fact-finding mission he had carried out in Niger for the Agency, as well as his good contacts "with both the [prime minister] and the former minister of mines," she concluded by saying that her husband "may be in a position to assist. Therefore, request your thoughts on what, if anything to pursue here.
Is there anything ambiguous about that statement? I dont think so. Valerie Plame was recommending her husband for the Niger trip. [The document can be viewed here]
It ought to be sent to Attorney General Albert Gonzales by members of Mr. Waxmans committee, along with a cover note requesting a Special counsel investigation to determine whether Ms. Plame committed perjury during her March 16, 2007 Congressional testimony.
And thats not the only instance where Valerie Plame appears to have garbled the facts, intentionally or not.
Asked by Rep. Westmoreland about the context for sending her husband to Niger, Plame showed that she had been paying very close attention to what was publicly known about the case:
Congressman, I believe one of the pieces of evidence that was introduced in the Libby trial was an INR memo of that meeting, where it states -- in fact, my husband was not particularly looking forward -- he didn't think it was necessary. There had been, I believe, at least two other reports -- one by a three-star general and one by the ambassador there on the ground -- who said there really wasn't much to this allegation.
And the INR folks that attended the meeting also said: Well, we're not sure that this is really necessary. But it was ultimately decided that he would go, use his contacts -- which were extensive in the government -- to see if there was anything more to this. It was a serious question asked by the Office of the Vice President, and it deserved a serious answer.
Theres only one problem with Valerie Plames statement. It doesnt square with what she also should have known from the classified record.
The report by the ambassador there on the ground has also been partially declassified, and concluded precisely to the contrary that initial CIA reporting provides sufficient details to warrant another hard look at Niger's uranium sales, according to the latest Senate intelligence committee report.
If anyone thought this story ended with Scooter Libbys sentencing hearing, or even with him going to jail, think again.
There is much more to come. Stay tuned.
You mean you aren't going to vote for him in 2008 when he runs for his third term in office? Or what?
Uh, what the heck is this supposed to mean? Libby is not in jail, and his sentencing is under appeal. Why would the President want to be bombarded with 'Are you gonna pardon him, huh? Are ya? Are ya?' I don't blame him for not wanting to talk about it with everyone at this point.
Me thinks this author had a few too many caffeine drinks before writing this.
I guess some guys are so shallow that it doesn’t matter how despicable the woman is, as long as she looks good. :::shrug:::
I can appreciate your sarcasm, but what I meant was that in conversations with others, I have been trying to be a loyal defender of his administration, despite many disagreements. If he lets Libby get locked up, he doesn’t deserve my continued loyalty.
Bump for later
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But America's vision of "lovely" has vanished so I am infatuated with classic versions of "lovely," especially middle-aged images of lovely. My wife is one. When she dresses up she actually resembles Valerie, in face and figure, and that's why I think I have this unexplainable heart-melting when I see her face.
I think the same way about Peggy Noonan. Yeah, she's over 50, but she's lovely and has a brilliant and passionate conservative mind to boot. See these photos of Peggy:
I am so "weakened" I even have a soft spot for that flaming lib we know as Susan Sarandon (this will really tick off some Freepers):
Add a few more lovely women, like the First Lady Laura Bush,. I'm putty in their hands.
It’s a weakness ... I admit it ... I’m in therapy ... see post 28.
If Libby's upcoming appeal succeeds, he will be cleared of all charges. If Bush steps in now and issues a pardon, Libby will forever be known as the guy who was convicted of lying but pardoned by his pal.......
So it makes sense to allow the circus to go on at least until right before Bush leaves office.......
Just out of curiosity: What was the make-up of the Washington, DC jury? Isn’t the town itself almost all Democrat? Are any Republicans EVER elected there? If this is the case, can it be said that Libby was tried by a jury of his peers? If he was tried by a jury that was predisposed to convict him for being a Republican and serving a Republican president, the outcome of the trial is not surprising.
As no crime was committed Libby had no motive to lie.
This leads to only two conclusions:
1. Libby was mistaken in his testimony.
2. Tim Russert is a lying Son of a Bit— and perjured himself to get Libby convicted.
It should be noted that Tim Russert took no notes during his conversation with Libby. Tim Russert made no notes after his conversation with Libby. I find it very difficult to believe that after talking to the lawyer to the second most powerfull individual in the United States that Tim Russert did not take notes of this conversation so he could write an article or present it on television.
I think Russert is a lying Son of a Bit—!!!!
In case you don't speak Valley Girl, get a translator before you go there.
I think that is why Plame-Wilson moved to New Mexico. They know that if they stay in DC then they will be hounded by the media but if they stay in NM they can control the spin and exposure. They are also close to the border in case they have to make a quick escape.
If only to watch Chris Matthews head POP on nat’l tv.
Of course Plame lied, and she lied under oath to Congress. I’ll let others agonize over whether her “promise” to tell the truth constitutes a legal oath. She raised her hand, and then proceeded to lie to Congress. If Congress doesn’t consider that to be perjury, then perjury itself is meaningless.
I'm still confused though. What does your loyalty do or not do for him? Are you not going to vote Republican in 2008 because of him? Are you not going to send in donations to the RNC? As a lame duck President, nothing you do or not do can affect him. It can affect others in the RNC, but not him. If you are suggesting that you will not support inititives he creates that might otherwise be supported by a conservative, then you are going off the deep end into Bush Derangement Syndrome where nothing Bush does is praiseworthy simply because it's from Bush. On the other hand if you have been supporting otherwise noxious Bush inititives (such as prosecuting Ramos and Compean) simply because Bush did it, then that too is wrong. Not that I should tell you what to do, but the proper way out of the liberal quagmire the country finds itself in is to support conservative ideas and actions and reject anti-conservative ideas and actions no matter who originated them.
No arguments from me. I think they’re all hot.
Just another Paris Hilton wannabe ~
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