Scooter Libby did the Bush administration’s dirty work. He took one on the chin for his old boss. Envoking the Republican icon of the late 20th century- Scooter took one for the Gipper!
Denis Collins- Juror No. 9 who was interviewed extensively after the verdict said the jury wondered why Libby but not the leaker — Richard Armitage — or Karl Rove, among others, had been brought before them. He believed that Libby’s lawyer, Ted Wells, may have been correct in saying Libby was a fall guy for the administration. It just didn’t excuse Libby’s lies.
I agree with the jury’s verdict, but I feel cheated.
I believe there was an orchestrated attempt by the White House — and Cheney in particular — to discredit Joseph Wilson by alleging his trip to Africa in 2002 to check on intelligence claims that Iraq was attempting to acquire uranium from Niger for use in weapons of mass destruction was the result of nepotism. Cheney’s handwritten notes, introduced at trial, plainly asked whether Wilson had been sent on a junket by his wife.
This trial should have been about whether the vice president of the United States — in an effort to justify going to war by hiding the truth from the American public that there was no intelligence establishing that Iraq was in the process of acquiring materials for weapons of mass destruction — used Libby and other officials to manipulate the media and cause them to disclose the identity of a classified CIA agent.
Instead, because Libby clammed up, as is his right, and took a bullet for the team, even claiming to the grand jury he forgot the details of his conversations with Cheney, prosecutors weren’t able to get to the truth and decide if they had a case against Cheney. As Fitzgerald said when he announced Libby’s indictment, Libby had thrown sand in the face of the umpires.
In the end, while Libby’s lawyers were unsuccessful in defending their fall guy, they did a heck of a job for the administration.