My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


Re: Scooter Libby

I've been trying to get my arms around the whole Scooter Libby issue now for a while, and now that the sentence has been handed down, I'll say my piece.

There are, in my opinions, two possibilities: one, that Scooter Libby is a victim, a scapegoat of a policy gone awry and a prosecutor gone wild; or, two, that Scooter Libby is one of the dumbest people in Washington.

The general consensus seems to be that the prosecutor and the judge got carried away, and conspired to punish Libby for the crime-that-was-not-committed. And, I think that much is true. Based on everything I know and everything I've read, this prosecution should have ended before it started, and the only person who should be censured at all for anything is Richard Armitage. But, since the President turned the dogs loose and ordered a forceful investigation, that's what he got. To Scooter Libby's ultimate dismay.

On the other hand, if, as everybody seems to maintain, there was no underlying crime, and everybody know this, then there was no reason for Scooter Libby to lie. And, just in case that gets lost or obscured, remember: a relatively sympathetic jury found unanimously that Scooter Libby lied. You would think that a man of Libby's obvious experience and talents would know better than to get trapped in a typical Washington trap, but he didn't--for no apparent reason, he gave Patrick Fitzgerald all the reason he needed to keep going, keep pursuing, and, ultimately, get an indictment and conviction.

Libby should have known better, and today he got a 30-month sentence as punishment.

Now, as to what happens now, I don't see any reason to be optimistic that the President will pardon him--it would be a tremendous political liability and the President doesn't have a great history in this regard (as Bill Kristol so forcefully pointed out).

I know--the President could pardon Scooter Libby AND Sandy Berger at the same time. That'll catch the Dems sleeping.

Oh, wait--the President's Justice Department didn't see fit to go for a prosecution of Berger. Never mind.

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