Hollywood Lies About Plame

The editors of the Washington Post want you to know that “Fair Game,” the new movie about the Valerie Plame affair, is “Hollywood myth making.” Propaganda and lies is more like it.

Bob Novak Retires

Robert Novak, who has been a leading political columnist longer than I’ve been alive, has announced his immediate retirement in the wake of his diagnosis with a brain tumor. Robert Novak has announced his immediate retirement following the diagnosis of a brain tumor, a prognosis the Sun-Times’ political columnist describes as “dire.” “The details are […]

Valerie Plame Can’t Publish Dates of CIA Service

A federal judge has backed the CIA’s bid to keep Valerie Plame Wilson from disclosing the length of her CIA service, despite it being publicly available information. Valerie Wilson may be the best known former intelligence operative in recent history, but a federal judge in New York ruled Wednesday that she was not allowed to […]

Valerie Plame’s Lawsuit Dismissed

Valerie Plame’s civil suit against Dick Cheney and others has been thrown out. AP’s Matt Apuzzo: A federal judge on Thursday dismissed former CIA operative Valerie Plame’s lawsuit against members of the Bush administration in the CIA leak scandal. Plame, the wife of former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, had accused Vice President Dick Cheney and others […]

Joe Wilson Endorses Hillary Clinton

Valerie Plame’s husband, Joe Wilson, has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president on a conference call with liberal bloggers. Taylor Marsh, for one, is quite excited: “This is a huge deal for Candidate Clinton and a big endorsement for her candidacy. That it was broken on the blogs sends a powerful signal.” My guess is the […]

Novak on Plame Leak

Bob Novak recounts the details of his meeting with Richard Armitage wherein he learned of Valerie Plame’s CIA identity in his new autobiography, The Prince of Darkness. His newspaper, The Chicago Sun-Times, has an excerpt: It is important to note that Armitage reached out to me before Joe Wilson went public on the New York […]

Libby Commutation Reactions

As one would expect, last evening’s news that President Bush has commuted Scooter Libby’s jail sentence has spawned a huge amount of controversy in the blogosphere, with some decrying it as the greatest outrage since Watergate and others complaining it didn’t go far enough. From the Left: Nancy Pelosi: “The President’s commutation of Scooter Libby’s […]

Scooter Libby Granted Clemency

President Bush has granted clemency to I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby. WHEREAS Lewis Libby was convicted in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in the case United States v. Libby, Crim. No. 05-394 (RBW), for which a sentence of 30 months’ imprisonment, 2 years’ supervised release, a fine of $250,000, and a […]

Scooter Libby Denied Bail During Appeals

Barring a presidential pardon, it appears that Scooter Libby is headed to jail soon. A federal appeals court Monday rejected former White House aide Lewis “Scooter” Libby’s request to remain free on appeal after his March conviction on federal charges stemming from the leak of a CIA agent’s identity. Libby, once Vice President Dick Cheney’s […]

5 Myths About Scooter Libby

Carol Leonnig, who covers the federal courts for WaPo and with whom I had the pleasure of sitting during my brief stint covering the Libby trail, shoots down “5 Myths About Scooter and the Slammer.” Her column will irritate both Libby’s strongest supporters and most vehement critics. It’s now rather clear that Libby lied to […]

Plame Sheds Little Light in Leak Case

Valerie Plame Wilson testified before Congress today, claiming that she was a covert operative at the time Richard Armitage leaked information to Robert Novak and that the content of that leak–that she had been behind sending her husband, Joe Wilson, to Niger, was false. Her opening statement is transcribed here. AP’s Matt Apuzzo, who has […]

Democrats Invite Valerie Plame to Testify

Valerie Plame has been invited to testify before Congress. About nothing in particular. Democratic lawmakers are eager to hear from outed CIA operative Valerie Plame as they try to make political fodder out of the 2003 leak scandal. Plame was scheduled to testify before a congressional committee Friday, but it was unlikely the hearing would […]

Blogging the Scooter Libby Trial

Jay Rosen has a long homage to those who blogged the Scooter Libby trial, most notably the Firedoglake gang. As a critic who follows the fortunes of the American press, and writes about its collapse under Bush, I found it extremely painful to sit on the sidelines for this event. But as compensation I had […]

Libby Juror: Scooter Guilty but the Fall Guy

Scooter Libby juror Denis Collins explains the thought process of the jury. It confirms and expands on some quotes highlighted yesterday at the Drudge Report. Jurors in I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby’s perjury trial were certain of the former vice presidential aide’s guilt, but they also harbored sympathy for him as a “fall guy,” one of […]

Plame vs. Wilson

Kevin Drum finds it interesting that Ari Fleischer today testified that Scooter Libby told him, four days before Bob Novak’s story was filed, about Valerie Plame’s role in sending her husband, Joe Wilson, to Niger. Not “Valerie Wilson,” the name she used socially, but “Valerie Plame,” her maiden name and one that she used only […]

Libby Prosecution Witness Grossman Makes Defense Case

In cross-examination by Ted Wells, Marc Grossman, the first prosecution witness, explained the reason that neither he nor his boss Richard Armitage had read a high critical article by Nicholas Kristoff that sparked the chain of events of the Valerie Plame affair this way: “I had about a billion things to do” and “couldn’t be […]

Libby Trial: ‘The Wife’ Versus ‘That Woman’

Scooter Libby attorney Wells has repeatedly used the phrase “the wife” to refer to Valerie Plame/Wilson. He must have said it well over one hundred times and the statement is not yet over. He’s doing it to downplay her significance. She was just the wife, so why would an important, busy man like Libby pay […]

Libby Judge: Valerie Plame Status Irrelevant

Judge Walton has instructed the jury that Valerie Plame’s actual status with the CIA or the degree to which any revelations made by Scooter Libby put her in danger are totally irrelevant to the facts of this case. The only issue is whether the statements he made before the grand jury were factual and his […]

CIA Won’t Let Plame Write Book

The CIA Publications Review Board is denying Valerie Plame permission to write about her work for the Agency, or even mention that she did so, Michael Isikoff reports in the latest Newsweek. The panel refused Plame permission to even mention that she worked for the CIA because she served as a “nonofficial cover” officer (or […]

Human Events – Closing the Book on NovakGate

My latest for Human Events Online, “Closing the Book on NovakGate,” is up.

Rove Indicted?

Jason Leopold, writing at both “Truthout” and “OpEd News,” reports that Karl Rove has already been indicted. Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald spent more than half a day Friday at the offices of Patton Boggs, the law firm representing Karl Rove. During the course of that meeting, Fitzgerald served attorneys for former Deputy White House Chief […]

Plame Working on Iran WMD When Outed

The lefty blogosphere is abuzz over a story reported on Chris Matthews’ “Hardball” (which, for reasons never quite clear to me, they ordinarily consider right wing propaganda) that Valerie Plame was working on Iranian WMD when she was outed by Bob Novak and others. Raw Story, quoting a report by David Schuster: INTELLIGENCE SOURCES SAY […]

Rove Facing Charges in Plame Case

After years of investigation, it is starting to look like Karl Rove may actually be charged with something in the Valerie Plame CIA leak case. Patrick J. Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor in the C.I.A. leak case, is expected to decide in the next two to three weeks whether to bring perjury charges against Karl Rove, […]

State Memo Did Not Indicate Plame’s Role Was Secret

The State Department memo seen by most as the smoking gun in the Valerie Plame leak investigation contained no hint that she was a covert operative, Josh Gerstein reports. Contrary to published reports, a State Department memorandum at the center of the investigation into the leak of the name of a CIA operative, Valerie Plame, […]

Libby: Bush Authorized Plame Leak

Scooter Libby claims President Bush personally authorized the leak of Valerie Plame’s name to the NYT , according to reports in The New York Sun and National Journal. A former White House aide under indictment for obstructing a leak probe, I. Lewis Libby, testified to a grand jury that he gave information from a closely-guarded […]

Iraqi Civil War? An Update

An a day when the top Iraqi general in Baghdad was killed in an ambush, our top envoy to Iraq issued the most pessimistic remarks yet by a still-serving official of the government. The top U.S. envoy to Iraq said Monday that the 2003 toppling of Saddam Hussein’s regime had opened a “Pandora’s box” of […]

Cheney ‘Authorized’ Libby to Leak Classified Information

Scooter Libby claims Vice President Cheney authorized him to leak classified information to the press in order to defend Iraq War intelligence. Vice President Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, testified to a federal grand jury that he had been “authorized” by Cheney and other White House “superiors” in the summer […]

Valerie Plame Was Still Covert at Time of Leak

Michael Isikoff reports that Valerie Plame was still performing covert overseas assignments at the time her name was leaked to the press. Newly released court papers could put holes in the defense of Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, in the Valerie Plame leak case. Lawyers for Libby, and White House […]

Should President Bush Fire Karl Rove?

Bill Kristol believes the conventional wisdom is wrong on the question “Should Bush Fire Rove?” Bush’s decline in the polls long preceded the recent surge of publicity in the Plame case. But contrary to the media myth that Bush has been uncompromising and ideological, the strategy that the president has pursued for most of 2005 […]

President Bush Orders Staff to Attend Ethics Briefings

President Bush has ordered his entire staff to attend remedial training in ethics and handling of sensitive information in light of the CIA leak investigation and charges against former vice presidential chief of staff Scooter Libby. Bush Orders Staff to Attend Ethics Briefings (WaPo, A2) President Bush has ordered White House staff to attend mandatory […]

Ask Professor Stotch

Below the fold is the transcript of an interview I did recently about my take on the investigation that led to the indictment of Lewis Libby.

Yet Another Plame Post

It has been rightfully suggested in the comments of my previous post on this issue that the Intelligence Identities Protection Act was not the only statute that could have been used to charge Lewis Libby for leaking the identity of Valerie Plame to columnist Robert Novak. Because my posts on this issue have been long-winded, […]

Clarifying the Plame Game

I̢۪m going to once again try to clarify what I believe actually happened in the course of Patrick Fitzgerald̢۪s investigation into the outing of Valerie Plame, which ultimately led to the indictment of Lewis Libby. If you̢۪re uninterested in this topic, simply move along.

The Failed Fitzgerald Investigation

Lewis Libby has been accused of obstructing justice and lying to a grand jury, which are serious charges regardless of how anyone tries to spin it. But special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald needs to be held to account for the way in which he undertook this investigation. The whole “Plamegate” fiasco is analogous to a murder […]

Judith Miller’s Security Clearance

Somehow, I missed the news that New York Times reporter Judith Miller had a securty clearance. Ivo Daalder noted it on October 16: . . . Miller, by her own admission, was cleared to see secret information as part of her assignment as an “embedded” reporter in Iraq. I had no idea journalists could receive […]

Scooter Libby’s Fall

TIME‘s Michael Duffy has an interesting look at theScooter Libby saga entitled, “Fall Of A Vulcan – How a very smart and very loyal aide to Dick Cheney got indicted for allegedly lying about his role in defending the war.” The part I found most interesting was buried on page 3 When Novak’s column naming […]


Or, are you kidding me? Kevin Drum puts forward a perposterous argument for why I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby is really guilty of outing Valerie Plame. The explanation can be summed up as: Fitzgeral had the goods, but he just decided not to go after Libby on the actual reason he his current job. Kevin then […]

Was Plame’s CIA Status A Secret?

Andrew McCarthy, one of the major authors who have been cited (including by me) arguing that Valerie Plame was not in fact a covert agent issues a retraction of sort: The indictment charges the mere fact that Plame worked at the CIA was classified information. (“At all relevant times … Valerie Wilson was employed by […]

Libby Planning “I Forgot” Defense

Lawyers for Scooter Libby are building the groundwork for a defense based on the idea that he simply forgot where he heard about Valerie Plame and whom he told. Libby Lawyer Plans Lack-of-Memory Defense (AP) The lawyer for Vice President Dick Cheney’s former top aide is outlining a possible criminal defense that is a time-honored […]

What Was Plame’s Job?

In an earlier post, James clipped from a humorous take on the Lewis Libby indictment written by Michael Kinsley. In the article, Kinsley reiterated a piece of conventional wisdom: Two and a half years ago, Robert D. Novak published the name of an undercover CIA agent in his column. But is there any evidence that […]

Plame Game Recap

Michael Kinsley has a down and dirty–and amusing–summary of the events up to now in the Novak-Wilson-Plame-Libby-Rove affair. Throw Another Plot on to Boil (WaPo, A23) Confused? Sure. Who isn’t? One entertaining aspect of the story that is expected to reach some sort of climax today is the struggle of the media to summarize or […]

Valerie Plame May or May Not Leave CIA

The Washington Post, in a story that did not make the morning papers but contains no actual news, has rushed for publication on its website a story that Valerie Plame Wilson may resign because her career was “derailed” by Scooter Libby. Or, she may not. If her career was derailed to begin with. As Andrew […]

Scooter Libby Resigns After Indictment

The long-awaited shoe has finally dropped in the Plame affair, with Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff, Scooter Libby indicted and submitting his resignation. Cheney Adviser Resigns After Indictment (AP) The vice president’s chief of staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby Jr., was indicted Friday on charges of obstruction of justice, perjury and making false statements […]

Libby Indicted, Rove Still Under Investigation

The leaks surrounding the CIA leak investigation have proved correct: Scooter Libby has been indicted and Karl Rove has not, although the investigation into him will continue, according to CBS radio reports. So far, the online sources I’m finding are only reporting on the Rove non-indictment. CBS: Libby to be Indicted (WTOP) CBS News has […]

Cheney, Libby Blocked Papers To Senate Intelligence Panel

All the major papers are speculating about indictments coming down today in the Novak-Plame-Libby-Rove affair, with most focused on Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff, Scooter Libby. The most interesting, and damning, piece comes from National Journal. Cheney, Libby Blocked Papers To Senate Intelligence Panel Vice President Cheney and his chief of staff, I. Lewis […]

Fitzgerald: No News Today

I just walked by a television with CNN on and a spokesman for Pat Fitzgerald says no news about indictments in the Plame affair will be forthcoming today. Since the grand jury’s term expires Friday, we’ll know one way or the other by then.

Poll: 90 Percent Believe Administration Wrongdoing in CIA Leak

In yet more bad news for the Bush administration, ninety percent of the country thinks there was some wrongdoing in the Novak-Plame-Rove-Libby CIA leak affair. Poll: Few doubt wrongdoing in CIA leak (CNN) Only one in 10 Americans said they believe Bush administration officials did nothing illegal or unethical in connection with the leaking of […]

Republicans Following Clinton Model?

Jim Geraghty rightly takes colleague Hugh Hewitt to task for suggesting that the Democrats’ lockstep support of Bill Clinton during his impeachment should be emulated by the GOP. The topic at hand is the controversy over the Harriet Miers nomination but it seems to apply to the Novak-Plame-Rove-Libby flap as well. Andy McCarthy notes that […]

Did Anyone Commit a Crime in Plame Game?

As noted here earlier, Kay Bailey Hutchinson and other Republicans are arguing that perjury isn’t a real crime, at least in the context of the Novak-Plame-Rove-Libby affair. As clumsily presented over the weekend, that approach is both wrongheaded and insulting. However, I’ve subsequently read two very eloquent pieces taking a more nuanced approach. Michael Barone […]

Republicans Spinning Possible Perjury Charges

With indictments against Karl Rove and Scooter Libby considered likely, some prominent Republicans are pulling a page from the Bill Clinton defensive playbook and arguing that perjury is a “technicality” used when an actual crime can’t be proven. Republicans Testing Ways to Blunt Leak Charges (NYT) With a decision expected this week on possible indictments […]

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