Defense Attny: Libby Was Worried About Being 'Sacrificial Lamb for Karl Rove'
By Brad Friedman on 1/23/2007, 10:27am PT  

WASHINGTON - Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald used his opening statement in the CIA leak trial Tuesday to allege that Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff lied and destroyed a note showing Cheney's early involvement.

Fitzgerald said Cheney told his chief of staff, “Scooter” Libby, in 2003 that Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA and Libby spread that information to reporters. When that information got out, it triggered a federal investigation.

“But when the FBI and grand jury asked about what the defendant did,” Fitzgerald said, “he made up a story.”

Fitzgerald alleged that Libby in September 2003 “destroyed” a Cheney note just before Libby's first FBI interview when he said he learned about Wilson from reporters, not the vice president.

It also appears that Libby's Defense is preparing to go against the White House, according to their opening statement. Or, at least they seem to be claiming he was worried about being thrown under the bus to protect Rove...

Attorney Theodore Wells said Libby went to Cheney in 2003 and complained that the White House was subtly blaming him for leaking Plame’s identity to columnist Robert Novak.

“They’re trying to set me up. They want me to be the sacrificial lamb,” Wells said, recalling the alleged conversation between Libby and Cheney. “I will not be sacrificed so Karl Rove can be protected.”

Full MSNBC story, plus video, here...

FireDogLake is live blogging their notes on the scandal from inside the courtroom. Coverage of Prosecutor Fitzgerald's opening here..., Defense Attny Wells opener here....