Bush Spares Scooter Libby From Prison

LiddyRules

I'm Gonna Be The Bestest Pilot In The Whole Galaxy
Jun 1, 2005
644
#1
New sentence is now a $250,000 fine and 2 years probation instead of 2.5 years in prison. Your Amish Daddy...comment?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070703/ap_on_go_pr_wh/cia_leak_trial

WASHINGTON - President Bush spared former White House aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby from a 2 1/2-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.

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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."

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald disputed the president's assertion that the prison term was excessive. Libby was sentenced under the same laws as other criminals, Fitzgerald said. "It is fundamental to the rule of law that all citizens stand before the bar of justice as equals," the prosecutor said.

Libby's attorney, Theodore Wells, said in a statement that the Libby family was grateful for Bush's action and continued to believe in his innocence.

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 roiled the Reagan administration in the 1980s. Arms were secretly sold to Iran to gain freedom for American hostages, with the money funneled to anti-communist guerrillas in Nicaragua in spite of a congressional ban. Bush's father, former President George H.W. Bush, issued pardons for six former officials shortly before leaving office in 1992.

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

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 the 1976 presidential 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.

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."

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.

The leak case has hung over the White House for years. 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.
 

jagsfans

Registered User
Dec 26, 2005
228
#2
The balls on these corrupt motherfuckers. Libby is damn lucky he had nothing that could hurt these guys like Kenneth Lay.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
0
#3
bush must have decided that approval ratings are for faggots
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
898
#4
First off, I never understood what Libby did that was so wrong. Secondly, this is par for the course as far as presidents go. The buddies of presidents are always given some sort of pardon. Non-news.
 
Jul 26, 2005
0
#5
this proves people are stupid and ironically I don't mean the president...this time.
 

mascan42

Registered User
Aug 26, 2002
848
#6
[Opie]Wow, who saw this coming?[/Opie]
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
0
#7
First off, I never understood what Libby did that was so wrong. Secondly, this is par for the course as far as presidents go. The buddies of presidents are always given some sort of pardon. Non-news.
yeah I mean Clinton himself lied under oath while in office. I havent heard hilary cry about this so far, I wonder if she has the sack to do it given bill just started helping with the campaign
 

Sct Ptersns Twn

Looking 4 a New 1st Mate
Dec 4, 2005
601
#8
This is another good reason to get these 2 party mother fuckers out of the offices of the United States. Until then, you fucks voting them in can whine and cry all you want. They play these games with one another all the time. They all suck dick, just like XM.

I did not need this today.....
 

norton23

Opie And Anthony Always Win In The End
Dec 1, 2002
0
#9
:clap::clap::clap::clap::clap: No FUCKING reason to do jail time NONE!!
 

LilJimmyRbinson

Best muppet ever
Nov 19, 2004
586
#10
First off, I never understood what Libby did that was so wrong. Secondly, this is par for the course as far as presidents go. The buddies of presidents are always given some sort of pardon. Non-news.
Further proof of how out of touch Bush is. Whether Libby did anything really wrong or not, public perception is that someone in the administration lied at some point. Libby was the last one standing when the music stopped so he was charged, tried and convicted. There's always a fall-guy. If Bush let him serve his sentence this would all blow over. Now that he's done this, it further makes Americans believe that Bush and his administration are so stubborn and incompetent.
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
Wackbag Staff
Aug 26, 2002
919
#11
I'm really surprised that he didn't get a full pardon. Bush's ratings will
never improve and he never gives a shit what other people think so
why not let him off the hook completely?
 
Feb 20, 2006
521
#12
Your Amish Daddy...comment?

:action-sm
You guys are all sheep! How can you be so stupid as to think this would have any other outcome? This world is doomed, DOOMED I tell ya. I love you buncha hateful bigots. I don't know why I try, really, I give up. Somebody nuke the world please. I hate this place.





.
 
Dec 30, 2005
0
#13
New sentence is now a $250,000 fine and 2 years probation instead of 2.5 years in prison. Your Amish Daddy...comment?
Hey, it's Marc Rich.... Republican style.


My hand is already on the switch for Ron Paul. Can't happen fast enough.
 

jagsfans

Registered User
Dec 26, 2005
228
#16
This is another good reason to get these 2 party mother fuckers out of the offices of the United States. Until then, you fucks voting them in can whine and cry all you want. They play these games with one another all the time. They all suck dick, just like XM.

I did not need this today.....
Yea, cuz these are the only two to ever abuse the Executive office. Horseshit. Whoever gets voted in 2008 will have a whole new list of scumbags to release.

However, I agree Libby did'nt deserve time for simply putting into motion the outing of a CIA desk jockey. What I don't get is wy go through all the time and money of ivestigating, prosecuting and convicting to have it signed away immediately
 

weakside

He was stupid. I was lucky. I will visit him soon.
Dec 9, 2004
0
#18
First off, I hate political pardons whether its from a Republican or Democrat. It totally pisses on our court system. This is why we have three branches of government.

Besides, I’m not sure what Bush thought this was going to accomplish. Yes, he keeps a person from this staff from going to prison but by doing so has perpetuated the stereotype of the “Old Boy Network” being in full effect.

The Republican Party would have taken much less of a hit if they spun this as an isolated incident having nothing to do with the Party and let him serve out his sentence. Bush just created controversy that didn’t need to be and is yet another issue the Republicans will have to distance themselves from in the election.
 
Dec 30, 2005
0
#19
The bottom line is this. Libby was essentially found guilty for impeding a federal investigation. Whether that investigation was outing a CIA agent, or someone spitting gum on Pennsylvania Avenue. It's still a federal investigation. And it is illegal, no matter what the circumstances to do that.

As we've seen time and time again, from Whitewater to Watergate the cover up and events that take place in order to prevent discovery in something that may or may not be a crime at the time will land you in jail.

It does not matter what your take is on Valerie Plame. If it were not a big deal there would have not been a federal investigation over it. The fact Irving Libby chose to subvert it is in fact illegal. He was found guilty for it, and now like so many other people in government will skate.

You can choose your sides, and root for your set of criminals all you want. But the fact that ALL of them have more access, and preferential treatment, and can skirt the law and dodge the legal system while you or I would be in jail is the true crime.

Just like the Paula Jones case, or this case, or the third rate burglary in the 70's clearly there are two sets of rules and laws for everyone in this country.

That should be the most alarming thing about this.

And that is as honest and real as I can be about it. I hate the double standard. Across the board.
 

Bill

Registered User
Aug 11, 2004
261
#20
I'm really surprised that he didn't get a full pardon. Bush's ratings will
never improve and he never gives a shit what other people think so
why not let him off the hook completely?
I think that a full pardon would hurt the Republican candidates in the next elections for President and Congress. The full pardon will occur sometime after election day 2008 and the day that Bush leaves office.
 

wrinkletard

How'd your 360 die?
Sep 30, 2004
463
#21
Scooter Libby is a Yale graduate. It is another Skull and Bones administration. Anyone ever wonder why people that know the real GW never speak about his past?
 

MrAbovePar

En Taro Anthony
Mar 14, 2005
678
#22
Further proof of how out of touch Bush is. Whether Libby did anything really wrong or not, public perception is that someone in the administration lied at some point. Libby was the last one standing when the music stopped so he was charged, tried and convicted. There's always a fall-guy. If Bush let him serve his sentence this would all blow over. Now that he's done this, it further makes Americans believe that Bush and his administration are so stubborn and incompetent.
So you'd let a guy you believe to have nbothing wrong stay in jail just to help your public ratings? Hell of a friend you are.
 

HummerTuesdays

Another girrrrl!!!
Apr 24, 2005
491
#23
So you'd let a guy you believe to have nbothing wrong stay in jail just to help your public ratings? Hell of a friend you are.
It doesn't matter what *I* believe or what the president believes. That's why we have a court system.
 

Vyce

Light-skinned, with no Negro dialect.
Feb 11, 2006
496
#25
Good for Bush. He's not my favorite guy, by far, but this was the right decision.

Liberals will piss and moan about it, but really, he did LESS for Libby here than fucking Bill did for a lot of people. Libby wasn't pardoned, so he still has the conviction on his record, as well as a six figure fine. So he doesn't get to go to jail, boo fucking hoo.