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Friday, October 28, 2005
Indictment Watch
By Dr. Steven Taylor @ 6:47 am

Via the NYT: Cheney Aide Appears Likely to Be Indicted; Rove Under Scrutiny

Lawyers in the C.I.A. leak case said Thursday that they expected I. Lewis Libby Jr., Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, to be indicted on Friday, charged with making false statements to the grand jury.

Karl Rove, President Bush’s senior adviser and deputy chief of staff, will not be charged on Friday, but will remain under investigation, people briefed officially about the case said. As a result, they said, the special counsel in the case, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, was likely to extend the term of the federal grand jury beyond its scheduled expiration on Friday.

It has long seemed to me that 1) if there were any indictments that they would not be for violating the law concerning outing undercover agents and 2) that Libby was the most likely to be indicted.

I continue to reserve judgment on charges (especially since they have not come out yet) but also continue to wonder about a multi-year investigation that may end up boiling down to the fact that the crime under investigation never took place.

Of course, if Libby (or anyone else) did lie to the grand jury, that’s a crime, and is problematic. Still, there is something wrong with creating a situation in which the mechanism by which the conditions for committing the crime were artificially created in the first place. In this, it would appear that if indictments are handed down they will be for crimes that would not have existed if the grand jury had not existed.

Also, it does seem that there is profound pressure on these types of inquiries to indict someone-otherwise, the proces looks like a waste of time.

This strikes me as a problematic cycle.

Still, problematic cycle or not, it doesn’t excuse giving improper testimony. And certainly, questions about how Libby handled information will have the very real potential of damaging the Vice President, given that according to the NYT, Libby:

is seen by many people in the White House as Mr. Cheney’s alter ego

Then you get into things like: Cheney, Libby Blocked Papers To Senate Intelligence Panel.

However, the suggestion that the Grand Jury investigation into Rove might be extended is vexing, only insofar as it would seem two years is long enough to look into this matter. Of course, I confess that my blogger’s impatience may be kicking in. I simply want to know it all, and I want to know it all now.

Filed under: US Politics, Criminal Justice | |Send TrackBack

7 Comments »

  1. My memory of the details are hazy, but regarding what you write above, “In this, it would appear that if indictments are handed down they will be for crimes that would not have existed if the grand jury had not existed,” could that not also apply to the whole “Clinton lied” and impeachment imbroglio?

    Personally, I am moving beyond skeptical into contrarian and cynical when it comes to the truthfulness of anyone in office, regardless of party. In other words:

    How can you tell a politician is lying?

    His lips are moving.

    How can you tell a politician is being self-serving?

    He’s not dead.

    I know each generation complains about how things are getting worse, but at times I wonder if for this generation the complaints are valid.

    Comment by Jack — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 7:50 am

  2. The comparisons to Clinton are inevitable, and I, myself, will refrain from deciding whether the comparisons are apt or not until I know what the charges are.

    And go back to the Washington administration and one can find a variety of activities by various cabinet members, most especially Jefferson and Hamilton, that would certainly result in grand juries today.

    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 7:58 am

  3. The differnce between the Clinton case and the Fitzgerald gulag is that Fitzgerald is a partisan hack whose political ambitions are clearly guiding the manufacturing of evidence. Fitzgerald worked for a time on Nacny Pelosi’s re-election campaign and served as a lawyer for the AFL-CIO in some corruption trials in the New York area. The fact that he has recently signed a deal to write a “tell all” book with Kitty Kelly and that he donated $2000 to Jane Fonda’s bio-diesel bus tour makes his neutrality suspect.

    Fitzgerald is getting funding from Soros and is a wing of the democratic party’s noise machine.

    Comment by Slinon — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 8:47 am

  4. Slinon if those comments are true please give me some facts. I agree the whole things smells, especially Joe Wilson.

    Comment by c.v. — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 9:26 am

  5. I am troubled by charges that might be used by prosecutors as “justifying” a long investigation where the original criminal activity never occurred. I was troubled by that in the Martha Stewart case.

    That having been said: if anyone committed perjury, then it is a serious matter and they need to be prosecuted. Perhaps the rules ought to be changed, but until they are, they should be played by.

    Comment by Steven L. — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 10:19 am

  6. I find it interested that those from the same wing who praise Starr refer to Fitzgerald as a “partisan hack”, despite the fact that the Fitzgerald investigation has been far less “leaky” and run far more professionally than anything Starr did in his investigation.

    Partisan goggles are amazing in how they distort views and prompt otherwise rational people to say things that are completely irrational.

    Comment by Jack — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 10:29 am

  7. Steven L.:

    I concur. And let me be clear, if I have not been, perjury is a crime, and if perjury has been comitted, that prosecution is warranted. I just don’t know how to react exactly as yet, as I haven’t seen any actual indictments.

    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Friday, October 28, 2005 @ 10:42 am

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