PDA

View Full Version : Bush spares Libby from Prison



Quikfeet509
2nd July 07, 07:58 PM
Bush spares Libby from 2 1/2-year prison term
President leaves fine, probation intact for convicted ex-White House aide

http://msnbcmedia1.msn.com/j/msnbc/Components/Photos/070702/070702_libby_hmed_3p.hmedium.jpgWASHINGTON - President Bush spared former White House aide I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby from a 2½-year prison term in the CIA leak investigation Monday, delivering a political thunderbolt in the highly charged criminal case. Bush said the sentence was just too harsh.

Bush’s move came just five hours after a federal appeals panel ruled that Libby could not delay his prison term. That meant Libby was likely to have to report soon, and it put new pressure on the president, who had been sidestepping calls by Libby’s allies to pardon Vice President Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff.

“I respect the jury’s verdict,” Bush said in a statement. “But I have concluded that the prison sentence given to Mr. Libby is excessive. Therefore, I am commuting the portion of Mr. Libby’s sentence that required him to spend thirty months in prison.”

Is it about time to start with the molotov cocktails? I mean seriously, how much more of this crap are we supposed to sit around and take? Hopefully Valerie Plame's lawsuit will parallel with OJ Simpson case - the assholes get off of the criminal charges but get their asses handed to them in the civil case.

Bush’s decision enraged Democrats and cheered conservatives — though some of the latter wished Bush had granted a full pardon.

“Libby’s conviction was the one faint glimmer of accountability for White House efforts to manipulate intelligence and silence critics of the Iraq war,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. “Now, even that small bit of justice has been undone.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Bush’s decision showed the president “condones criminal conduct.”

Unlike a pardon, which would have wiped away Libby’s criminal record, Bush’s commutation voided only the prison term.

The president left intact a $250,000 fine and two years probation for his conviction of lying and obstructing justice in a probe into the leak of a CIA operative’s identity. The former operative, Valerie Plame, contends the White House was trying to discredit her husband, a critic of Bush’s Iraq policy.

Bush said his action still “leaves in place a harsh punishment for Mr. Libby.”

Libby was convicted in March, the highest-ranking White House official ordered to prison since the Iran-Contra affair.

Testimony in the case had revealed the extraordinary steps that Bush and Cheney were willing to take to discredit a critic of the Iraq war.

Reputation 'forever damaged'

Libby’s supporters celebrated the president’s decision.

“President Bush did the right thing today in commuting the prison term for Scooter Libby,” said House Republican Whip Roy Blunt of Missouri.

“That’s fantastic. It’s a great relief,” said former Ambassador Richard Carlson, who helped raise millions for Libby’s defense fund. “Scooter Libby did not deserve to go to prison and I’m glad the president had the courage to do this.”

Already at record lows in the polls, Bush risked a political backlash with his decision. President Ford tumbled in the polls after his 1974 pardon of Richard M. Nixon, and the decision was a factor in Ford’s loss in his bid for re-election.

White House officials said Bush knew he could take political heat and simply did what he thought was right. They would not say what advice Cheney might have given the president.

On the other hand, Bush’s action could help Republican presidential candidates by letting them off the hook on the question of whether they would pardon Libby.

A message seeking comment from Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald’s office was not immediately returned.

Bush said Cheney’s former aide was not getting off free.

“The reputation he gained through his years of public service and professional work in the legal community is forever damaged,” Bush said. “His wife and young children have also suffered immensely. He will remain on probation. The significant fines imposed by the judge will remain in effect. The consequences of his felony conviction on his former life as a lawyer, public servant and private citizen will be long-lasting.”

A spokeswoman for Cheney said simply, “The vice president supports the president’s decision.”

No 'pardon' mention

The White House said Bush came to his decision in the past week or two and made it final Monday because of the ruling of the appeals panel, which meant Libby would be going to prison soon.

The president’s announcement came just as prison seemed likely for Libby. He recently lost an appeals court fight that was his best chance to put the sentence on hold, and the U.S. Bureau of Prisons had already designated him inmate No. 28301-016.

Bush’s statement made no mention of the term “pardon,” and he made clear that he was not willing to wipe away all penalties for Libby.

The president noted Libby supporters’ argument that the punishment did not fit the crime for a “first-time offender with years of exceptional public service.”

Yet, he added: “Others point out that a jury of citizens weighed all the evidence and listened to all the testimony and found Mr. Libby guilty of perjury and obstructing justice. They argue, correctly, that our entire system of justice relies on people telling the truth. And if a person does not tell the truth, particularly if he serves in government and holds the public trust, he must be held accountable.”

Bush then stripped away the prison time.

'I'm happy'

After CIA operative Valerie Plame’s name appeared in a 2003 syndicated newspaper column, Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald questioned top administration officials, including Bush and Cheney, about their possible roles.

Nobody was ever charged with the leak, including Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage or White House political adviser Karl Rove, who provided the information for the original article. Prosecutors said Libby obstructed the investigation by lying about how he learned about Plame and whom he told.

Plame believes Libby and other White House officials conspired to leak her identity to reporters in 2003 as retribution against her husband, Joseph Wilson, who criticized what he said was the administration’s misleading use of prewar intelligence on Iraq.

Attorney William Jeffress said he had spoken to Libby briefly by phone and “I’m happy at least that Scooter will be spared any prison time. ... The prison sentence was imminent, but obviously the conviction itself is a heavy blow to Scooter.”

A White House official notified the trial judge, U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton, of the decision. Walton, a Bush appointee who served in the White House under the president’s father, had cited the “overwhelming” evidence against Libby when he handed down his sentence. A courthouse spokesman said Walton would not comment.

----------------------------------------

Link. (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19570081/?GT1=10150)

Is it about time to start with the molotov cocktails? I mean seriously, how much more of this crap are we supposed to sit around and take? Hopefully Valerie Plame's lawsuit will parallel with OJ Simpson case - the ***holes get off of the criminal charges but get their butts handed to them in the civil case.

Discuss this. (http://www.sociocide.com/forums/showthread.php?t=47310&p=1241417#post1241417)

Stick
2nd July 07, 08:23 PM
Who's surprised? Show of hands.

Question!
2nd July 07, 08:50 PM
He knows he's out in over a year anyway, so he's pulling as much bullshit as he possibly can.

ThaiBoxerShorts
2nd July 07, 09:24 PM
It's official. The rule of law no longer exists in the United States. We are governed by a ruling elite who exist above the law.

The lid has been on the coffin for a while, but now it's nailed shut.

emboesso
2nd July 07, 09:31 PM
Before anyone starts throwing any molotovs...

Libby was not charged with or convicted of revealing Plame's identity. Fitzgerald knew early in the investigation it was Richard Armitage. Armitage admitted it to investigators and owned up to it under oath in court.

But Armitage was not charged with revealing Plame's identity. Why? Because Fitzgerald knew all along it was not a crime.

So Libby was charged with and convicted of lying to investigators about a crime that wasn't even a crime.

Investigations are supposed to be conducted into crimes, not fishing expeditions to see if you can catch people in lies. It addition to knowing there was no underlying crime, Fitzgerald also waited ages to tell Karl Rove he was off the hook, keeping the media frenzy alive.

And I'm being generous to prosecutors to even call them "lies". A man in Libby's position is not likely to remember the contents of the dozens and dozens of topics discussed daily. It is absurd.

Yeah, that's a big head you guys got on the wall there.

Melkolmr
2nd July 07, 10:43 PM
Since when is an illegal violation of the IIPA not a crime?

Sun Wukong
2nd July 07, 11:54 PM
Before anyone starts throwing any molotovs...

Libby was not charged with or convicted of revealing Plame's identity. Fitzgerald knew early in the investigation it was Richard Armitage. Armitage admitted it to investigators and owned up to it under oath in court.

But Armitage was not charged with revealing Plame's identity. Why? Because Fitzgerald knew all along it was not a crime.

So Libby was charged with and convicted of lying to investigators about a crime that wasn't even a crime.

Investigations are supposed to be conducted into crimes, not fishing expeditions to see if you can catch people in lies. It addition to knowing there was no underlying crime, Fitzgerald also waited ages to tell Karl Rove he was off the hook, keeping the media frenzy alive.

And I'm being generous to prosecutors to even call them "lies". A man in Libby's position is not likely to remember the contents of the dozens and dozens of topics discussed daily. It is absurd.

Yeah, that's a big head you guys got on the wall there.

Who gives a shit? He was convicted a fucking court of law, this wasn't a god damn thanksgiving turkey he pardoned.

You think this was a unfair ruling? The fucking books are full of god damn unfair rulings far worse with people who undoubtedly did nothing morally wrong whatsoever.

You don't lie to the fucking police, you don't lie in court and you sure as fuck don't lie to the god damn Congress over a matter concerning the secret identity of a god damn US spy. You keep your fucking nose out of it and when they ask you, you fucking tell the truth.

That's what loyalty to the fucking country means. And the consequences for lying in those situations is fucking death in a whole shit load of other countries.

He would have never, in a million years, done the same for someone who was tossed in jail for doing the same thing for the democrats. If he wouldn't do that for both sides of the political fence, then he doesn't understand what the justice system is there for.

And apparently, he does't have to understand what justice is, because the people who support him don't care how badly he bends, breaks, or ignores it.

Yiktin Voxbane
3rd July 07, 12:03 AM
Sad , just sad .

Dagon Akujin
3rd July 07, 12:43 AM
:hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan

:hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan

:hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan

:hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan

:hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan :hitlerdan

fixed.

Olorin
3rd July 07, 02:14 AM
and you sure as fuck don't lie to the god damn Congress over a matter concerning the secret identity of a god damn US spy.

She worked for the CIA but she was not a spy. For the law to take effect she had to be undercover and she was not. In fact, Wilson her husband used to introduce her at parties as “my CIA wife.” Should we put him in jail?

In fact, the tactic used by the prosecutors is an old Joe McCarthy trick. You start with something that’s not a crime to begin with, you then ask a shitload of questions, and drag the investigation out as long as possible. Then when you find inconstancies, you charge the person with perjury.

.

Question!
3rd July 07, 02:37 AM
If you're gonna post Hitlers, there should be 50 of them for the standard 50_Hitler_post. (http://encyclopediadramatica.com/50_Hitler_post)

emboesso
3rd July 07, 05:08 AM
Who gives a shit? He was convicted a fucking court of law, this wasn't a god damn thanksgiving turkey he pardoned.

You think this was a unfair ruling? The fucking books are full of god damn unfair rulings far worse with people who undoubtedly did nothing morally wrong whatsoever.

You don't lie to the fucking police, you don't lie in court and you sure as fuck don't lie to the god damn Congress over a matter concerning the secret identity of a god damn US spy. You keep your fucking nose out of it and when they ask you, you fucking tell the truth.

That's what loyalty to the fucking country means. And the consequences for lying in those situations is fucking death in a whole shit load of other countries.

He would have never, in a million years, done the same for someone who was tossed in jail for doing the same thing for the democrats. If he wouldn't do that for both sides of the political fence, then he doesn't understand what the justice system is there for.

And apparently, he does't have to understand what justice is, because the people who support him don't care how badly he bends, breaks, or ignores it.

Armitage revealed her identity. Armitage wasn't charged because it was not a crime.

Libby was convicted of lying to prosecutors investigating something Libby DIDN'T do (Armitage did it), and about something that wasn't a crime.

Why lie about something you DIDN'T do, especially when the thing that you DIDN'T do isn't even a crime?

Kiko
3rd July 07, 05:34 AM
It was a bad move, but Libby wasn't pardoned. The findings of the court still stand.

On the other hand, check out this link (http://www.usdoj.gov/pardon/clintonpardon_grants.htm)
and sure, while you're there, look at any other president's lists.

Sun Wukong
3rd July 07, 05:46 AM
Olorin, you are specifically minimizing the charges against Libby because you yourself don't consider them substantial. This is what happened and what Libby did is clearly illegal.

Libby told investigators that he first found out about Plame's CIA employment from the reporter Tim Russert. He also said he had forgotten that Cheney had already told him that particular bit of information.

The indictment says that thos statements to federal investigators and the grand jury were lies because Libby had numerous conversations about Plames CIA employment before ever talking to Russert.

Russert DID NOT tell Libby about Plame's CIA employment. Libby was proved to have known about it in advance beyond the shadow of a doubt. Libby told reporters that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA directly and without making any sort of statement that he was unsure of it.

1. The false statement charges in the Libby case allege that he LIED to the FBI about it.

2. The perjury charges are for repeatedly making those claims to the grand jury.

3. The obstruction of justice charge is because Libby made those statements in order to impede the Fitzgerald grand jury investigation.

Sun Wukong
3rd July 07, 05:54 AM
Valerie Plame wasn't a spy, but she was a NOC. <---- Read very carefully: Non-Official Cover. A Spook by any other name is still a fucking spook.

Non-Official Cover:


a term used in espionage for agents or operatives who assume covert roles in organizations without ties to the government for which they work.


Still not enough to get worked up about?

Stick
3rd July 07, 07:31 AM
You know, much as it pains me... were some of us liberals here as upset when Clinton lied under oath and got away with it?

I mean, come on guys.

/lays back and accepts "the future"; boot continues stamping on face

*wimper*

Shawarma
3rd July 07, 08:39 AM
Clinton pardoned a bunch of people too just as he was leaving office.

WarPhalange
3rd July 07, 08:39 AM
Before anyone starts throwing any molotovs...

Libby was not charged with or convicted of revealing Plame's identity. Fitzgerald knew early in the investigation it was Richard Armitage. Armitage admitted it to investigators and owned up to it under oath in court.

But Armitage was not charged with revealing Plame's identity. Why? Because Fitzgerald knew all along it was not a crime.

So Libby was charged with and convicted of lying to investigators about a crime that wasn't even a crime.

Investigations are supposed to be conducted into crimes, not fishing expeditions to see if you can catch people in lies. It addition to knowing there was no underlying crime, Fitzgerald also waited ages to tell Karl Rove he was off the hook, keeping the media frenzy alive.

And I'm being generous to prosecutors to even call them "lies". A man in Libby's position is not likely to remember the contents of the dozens and dozens of topics discussed daily. It is absurd.

Yeah, that's a big head you guys got on the wall there.

Haven't you been going on and on about how Clinton had to be impeached, for the very same reason, i.e. lying under oath?

Sun Wukong
3rd July 07, 10:39 AM
Clinton pardoned a bunch of people too just as he was leaving office.
It's traditional to pardon people who are in jail for ridiculous things when a president leaves office. This, however, is totally different and motivated sheerly by favoritism and partisan loyalty.

Not the same thing remotely.

EDIT: if Bush were interested in justice he'd pardon that teenage kid who's sitting in jail right now as a sex offender for having consensual sex with a girl only 2 years younger than he is.

Sun Wukong
3rd July 07, 10:48 AM
You know, much as it pains me... were some of us liberals here as upset when Clinton lied under oath and got away with it?

I mean, come on guys.

/lays back and accepts "the future"; boot continues stamping on face

*wimper*
Of course we were dissappointed. It was shameful and brought disgrace to the office and discredited the party by association.

What really get's my goat is the horribly un-proportional amount of party loyalty in the Democratic party vs. the Republican party.

GWB could whip it out and wiz all over the tomb of the unknown soldier and get away with it with his own party as long as he had Tony Snow make a press release about how he had taken it on himself to single handedly thwart a terrorist plot to set it on fire using the only tool he had available with him at the time. Then he'd be lauded by the right wing pundits about how resourceful a president he was and how the liberals are only moaning about it because they don't support the troops and want the terrorist to win.

All the Democrat's have to do is have one bad legislative round with a largely green congress and their approval ratings in the polls drop 30%.

I'm so fucking sick of it all. My country's rulership has become a running joke.

BSDaemon
3rd July 07, 02:15 PM
Please flood the White house with calls, e-mails, and letters letting them know that they are now guilty of obstructing justice.

202-456-1111

[email protected]

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Stick
3rd July 07, 03:34 PM
^LoL^

Dagon Akujin
3rd July 07, 08:32 PM
If you're gonna post Hitlers, there should be 50 of them for the standard 50_Hitler_post. (http://encyclopediadramatica.com/50_Hitler_post)

You can't have more than 35 smileys in a post :*(

I tried I did!


You know, much as it pains me... were some of us liberals here as upset when Clinton lied under oath and got away with it?

I mean, come on guys.

/lays back and accepts "the future"; boot continues stamping on face

*wimper*
I don't consider myself a "liberal", but I was pissed at Clinton and glad he got impeached. I thought it was a fair punishment for his ass-hattery (stain on record but no removal). I think Dubbya needs some impeachment as well, and I think Cheney should be thrown in too. I'd advocate removal of either in this case however, since Clinton's shit-baggery was just to get some poon, and the Bushies did theirs to shove money at their rich friends at the cost of American and Iraqi lives.

Dagon

emboesso
3rd July 07, 08:57 PM
I think Dubbya needs some impeachment as well, and I think Cheney should be thrown in too. I'd advocate removal of either in this case however, since Clinton's shit-baggery was just to get some poon, and the Bushies did theirs to shove money at their rich friends at the cost of American and Iraqi lives.

Dagon

lolz.

This is why so many panties get knotted about Ann Coulter. She's about the only person on the right who rivals the bomb throwing of the left, which the left isn't used to receiving.

Rhetoric like the above here is every bit as looney as Coulter's. The only difference is that it is considered normal discourse by the left.

frumpleswift
3rd July 07, 09:42 PM
You know...this thread was entirely predictable from the onset. Somebody brings up Libby, Emboesseo invariably complains "liberal bias," people counter with their own rhetoric, Emboesseo pulls out the "Clinton did it" defense, and invariably Emboesseo says that Ann Coulter is just a response to liberal extremists.

I mean, once upon a time I could take Emboesseo seriously...but now he comes up with shit like this:


This is why so many panties get knotted about Ann Coulter. She's about the only person on the right who rivals the bomb throwing of the left, which the left isn't used to receiving.

Anyone who could say that with a straight face is either the great grand master of irony or a fucking moron.


EDIT: if Bush were interested in justice he'd pardon that teenage kid who's sitting in jail right now as a sex offender for having consensual sex with a girl only 2 years younger than he is.

Or he could have commuted the sentences of Betty Lou Beets (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betty_Lou_Beets) or any of the other 153 people executed while he was governor of Texas...if he was really worried about excessive sentences (or maybe even a hint of Christian mercy) that is.

Sun Wukong
4th July 07, 12:02 AM
Bomb throwing... of the left?

Quikfeet509
4th July 07, 12:14 AM
Now maybe the whole Libby trial was a scheme to get somebody to make a mistake under oath...but the judges that actually reviewed the trial felt there was overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing, which is important to remember because:

1. They are privy to more evidence than anyone one this board.
2. They understand the law
3. Some are Republicans

Dagon Akujin
4th July 07, 01:08 AM
3. Some are Republicans

Including Judge Reggie Walton, who was appointed by Bush Sr. and handled the Libby case.

Oh noes! He must have been another "closet liberal" all along!

Dagon