Wonky Muse
Wonky Muse

July 13, 2006

Breaking News: Valerie Plame Sues Cheney, Rove

From Reuters:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former CIA operative Valerie Plame and her husband sued Vice President Dock Cheney, top presidential aide Karl Rove and others on Thursday for their role in the public disclosure of her classified CIA status.

[...]

The suit also named Libby, who was Cheney's former chief of staff, and 10 unnamed senior government officials and aides.
The couple's lawyer, Christopher Wolf, has hinted at a civil lawsuit right after Patrick Fitzgerald informed Karl Rove that he won't be bringing charges against the latter. "The day still may come when Mr. Rove and others are called to account in a court of law for their attacks on the Wilsons," Mr. Wolf said.

As several news sources have pointed out previously, the three-year statute of limitation was about to run out which increased the possibility of such a lawsuit being filed soon.

E&P provides excerpts from the lawsuit:

"The Defendants reached an agreement to discredit, punish, and seek revenge against the Plaintiffs . . . . Said agreement was motivated by an invidiously discriminatory animus towards those who had publicly criticized the administration's stated justifications for going to war with Iraq."

"The Defendants chose not to address publicly, directly, and on the merits why they may have thought Mr. Wilson was wrong or unfair in his statements on the President's misstatements. Rather, they embarked on an anonymous 'whispering campaign' designed to discredit and injure the Plaintiffs and to deter other critics from publicly speaking out."

"But for Mr. Wilson coming forward, it is unlikely that the Administration ever would have acknowledged its error. The fact that the administration had to admit its mistake is one likely reason why the Defendants chose to attack the Wilsons"

"The Defendants fraudulently concealed the existence of the Plaintiffs' cause of action . . . by, among other things, giving false or misleading testimony to federal law enforcement personnel and/or the federal grand jury empanelled to investigate the unlawful publication of Plaintiff Valerie Plame Wilson's classified CIA employment . . . ."
Cheney and Rove may have their day of judgment after all. As The Carpetbagger Report astutely pointed out:

The possibility of a civil suit in this scandal has been in the background almost from the beginning. The Wilsons put the issue aside while the criminal investigation was ongoing, but now that Patrick Fitzgerald has wrapped up his probe, it is, as Atrios put it, "game on."

Remember, Paula Jones' civil suit against Clinton led the Supreme Court to rule unanimously that these cases can proceed, even against a sitting president, so it's not as if Bush's allies are in a position to tell the Wilsons to wait a couple of years.

Consider, for a moment, just how interesting discovery in this case is likely to be. A decade ago, Jones' lawyers used a civil suit to ask all manner of interesting questions, force White House officials to deliver under-oath depositions, and fish around for politically damaging information — which, if I recall, they found.

With this in mind, the Wilsons' lawyers will likely get Cheney, Rove, Libby, and others — including, possibly, George W. Bush — to answer questions, well beyond the scope of Fitzgerald's narrow investigation. The possibilities are limitless….
Image: Reuters/Joshua Roberts.

posted at 4:54 PM by Wonky Muse

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"Sapere Aude."
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Wonk (noun): def. A political nerd. Know spelled backwards.

Wonky Muse is the other Filipino American female political blogger. The sane, liberal one.


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