'Restoring Honor and Integrity to the Oval Office'
CONYERS ANNOUNCES INVESTIGATION: 'What did Bush and Cheney Know and When Did They Know It?'
By Brad Friedman on 10/28/2005, 11:44am PT  

5 counts (2 Perjury, 2 False Statements, 1 Obstruction of Justice) against I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby. He resigns.

Here's the indictment. Here's Fitzgerald's website.

First time in 130 years that a White House official has been indicted says Crooks & Liars.

We recommend FireDogLake for coverage and analysis throughout the day.

What else ya got? Be the media. Discuss...

Full official statement from John Conyers calling for an investigation and the thoughts of many bloggers and others on the indictment --- and where it may lead --- are below...

October 28, 2005

Conyers asks: What Did the President and Vice President Know and When Did They Know It?

Directs Judiciary Committee Staff to Conduct Full and Comprehensive Investigation into Treasongate, Downing Street, Pre-War and Other Deceptions

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement regarding Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald's decisions to indict Scooter Libby:

"Today's indictments represent the beginning, but not the end of the process of finally holding the Bush Administration accountable for its conduct in foisting a preemptive war on this country.

The prosecutor has performed his job in pursuing this case vigorously and fairly. However the charges really beg the larger question - what did the President and Vice President know about these and related matters, and when did they know it? I believe it is imperative that Congress pursue these questions and determine how these charges fit into the entire web of deception, manipulation and obfuscation laid bare by the Downing Street Minutes and Treasongate. As a result, I have directed my staff to conduct a comprehensive investigation and review of the facts concerning not only alleged efforts to misuse the White House to out a CIA operative, but misinformation concerning the run up the Iraq War, and all legal violations and breaches of trust by the Administration concerning the War."

##JUD -109-10/28/05##

Atrios asks...Who is "Official A"? From the indictment...

Valerie Plame/Wilson's CIA classmate Larry Johnson points out via email:

The indictment makes clear, with no shadow of a doubt, that Valerie Wilson was an undercover officer until exposed by Robert Novak's column. According to the indictment,

Prior to July 14, 2003, Valerie Wilson's affiliation with the CIA was not common knowledge outside the intelligence community.

Also, adding...

A careful reading of the indictment shows beyond a reasonable doubt that there was an organized effort in the White House to go after Joe and Valerie Wilson. At a minimum, Vice President Cheney was witting of this effort. Too bad these guys did not work as feverishly in tracking down Osama Bin Laden. They only had time to attack two American citizens who were serving their country.

FireDogLake asks:

One question: At least 4 people in government talked with Libby about this. Well, isn't that interesting? The GOP talking points are going to be that Libby was stupid/idiotic/overreaching/etc., but he clearly wasn't the only person discussing this within the government and who was he protecting by doing all of this and putting his own ass in jeopardy by testifying falsely?

BE THE MEDIA: MoveOn.org asks you to write Letters to the Editors. They make it easy here.

Josh Marshall points out:

Overlooked in the current discussion.

Go to page 5 of the indictment. Top of the page, item #9.

On or about June 12, 2003, LIBBY was advised by the Vice President of the United States that Wilson's wife worked at the Central Intelligence Agency in the Counterproliferation Divison. LIBBY understood that the Vice President had learned this information from the CIA.

This is a crucial piece of information. the Counterproliferation Division (CPD) is part of the CIA's Directorate of Operations, i.e., not Directorate of Intelligence, the branch of the CIA where 'analysts' come from, but where the spies come from.

Libby's a long time national security hand. He knows exactly what CPD is and where it is. So does Cheney. They both knew. It's right there in the indictment.

Also from Josh...

Remember, I. Lewis Libby doesn't just work for the Vice President.

From the beginning of the administration, a key root of Libby's power at the White House is that he works both for the Vice President (as Chief of Staff and National Security Affairs Advisor) and the President of the United States (as Assistant to the President).

From a statement by Howard Dean, issued by the DNC:

"This is a sad day for America.
...
"This is not only an abuse of power, it is an un-American abuse of the public trust. As Americans, we must hold ourselves and our leaders to a higher standard. We cannot fear dissent. We cannot fear the truth. And we cannot tolerate those who do.

"More importantly, we can't ignore the glaring questions this case has raised about the rationale the Bush Administration used to send us to war in Iraq, a war that continues. American soldiers are still in harms way. Over 2,000 brave Americans have lost their lives, thousands of American soldiers have been wounded, and thousands of American families have made the ultimate sacrifice. Still, the President has no plan and no exit strategy. And still he hasn't answered the question, what are we doing in Iraq and when can our troops come home?"