Azara Blog: White House in trouble

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Date published: 2005/10/29

The Financial Times says (subscription service):

George W. Bush was on Friday night facing his most serious White House crisis after the special prosecutor in the CIA leak case announced criminal charges against a top administration aide and decided to keep the investigation open.

As he headed to his Camp David retreat for the weekend, relief for Mr Bush that Karl Rove, his chief strategist, had not been indicted was tempered by the prospect of further torment from the continuing inquiry and likely trial of Lewis "Scooter" Libby, chief of staff to Dick Cheney, vice-president.

The federal grand jury in Washington indicted Mr Libby on five counts of obstruction of justice, perjury and making false statements during the investigation by Patrick Fitzgerald into how the identity of a covert CIA operative was leaked to the media after the invasion of Iraq.

Mr Fitzgerald said: "Without the truth our justice system cannot serve our nation or its citizens. The requirement to tell the truth applies equally to all citizens, including persons who hold high positions in government."

Mr Libby, who also acted as national security adviser to Mr Cheney, has resigned. He could face 30 years in prison.

Mr Bush and Mr Cheney both praised Mr Libby's talents and said he was entitled to a fair trial. Before boarding his helicopter, a grim-faced Mr Bush spoke of how "Scooter" had sacrificed much for his country.

Robert Luskin, lawyer for Mr Rove, said his client would continue to co-operate with the probe, which he was confident would confirm his innocence.

Everybody knows that Cheney and Rove also have their fingers in this cover-up and so far Libby is the fall guy. Of course the usual Republican Party scum (which seems to be most of the Republican Party these days) are going around defending the administration. This is par for the course for this kind of scandal. All we need now is for Bush to state: "I am not a crook".

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