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Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Fitzmas is Cancelled
Posted by Jill | 7:06 AM
Fitz has decided not to indict Karl Rove:

The prosecutor in the C.I.A. leak case on Monday advised Karl Rove, the senior White House adviser, that he would not be charged with any wrongdoing, effectively ending the nearly three-year criminal investigation that had at times focused intensely on Mr. Rove.

The decision by the prosecutor, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, announced in a letter to Mr. Rove's lawyer, Robert D. Luskin, lifted a pall that had hung over Mr. Rove who testified on five occasions to a federal grand jury about his involvement in the disclosure of an intelligence officer's identity.

In a statement, Mr. Luskin said, "On June 12, 2006, Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald formally advised us that he does not anticipate seeking charges against Karl Rove."

Mr. Fitzgerald's spokesman, Randall Samborn, said he would not comment on Mr. Rove's status.

For months Mr. Fitzgerald's investigation appeared to threaten Mr. Rove's standing as Mr. Bush's closest political adviser as the prosecutor riveted his focus on whether Mr. Rove tried to intentionally conceal a conversation he had with a Time magazine reporter in the week before the name of intelligence officer, Valerie Plame Wilson, became public.

The decision not to pursue any charges removes a potential political stumbling block for a White House that is heading into a long and difficult election season for Republicans in Congress.

Mr. Fitzgerald's decision should help the White House in what has been an unsuccessful effort to put the leak case behind it. Still ahead, however, is the trial of Vice President Dick Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby Jr., on charges for perjury and obstruction of justice, and the prospect that Mr. Cheney could be called to testify in that case.

I'll leave it to those better versed than I (like the Firedoglake folks) to analyze the decision. I can only think, however, that Fitz felt he would need an iron-clad, sure-thing case in order to pursue this indictment -- and he didn't have enough.

Wingnuts will be rejoicing today, but for all that I think having Rove take a backseat hasn't helped the Administration "stay on message", I'm not sure his inevitable return to the driver's seat is going to salvage this presidency.

And NONE of this changes the fact that a CIA non-official cover operative investigating the trafficking of nuclear weapons materials into Iran had her cover blown by agents of the Presicdent of the United States because her husband dared to call them on their lies.
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