Under oath, Vice President Cheney’s former chief of staff Scooter Libby told a grand jury that he first learned that Joe Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame, was a CIA agent from conversations with the media. In fact, he first learned that information from Vice President Cheney himself.
Libby is now on trial for perjury. His defense is that he simply forgot who told him that Plame worked for the CIA. But in court today, prosecutors outlined a powerful case establishing that Libby had reason to remember who told him and motive to cover it up. MSNBC’s David Schuster said today’s revelations from prosecutors are “new and will astound a number of people, even those who have been following this case.” Among the new claims:
– “Vice President Cheney himself directed Scooter Libby to essentially go around protocol and deal with the press and handle press himself…to try to beat back the criticism of administration critic Joe Wilson.”
– Cheney personally “wrote out for Scooter Libby what Libby should say in a conversation with Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper.”
– “Scooter Libby destroyed a note from Vice President Cheney about their conversations and about how Vice President Cheney wanted the Wilson matter handled.”