In the Libby case, the press avoided what I thought was a critical bit (among many) of prosecutorial legerdemain: The last minute admission in court that respecting the first interview of the key witness, the late Tim Russert, the newscaster told the FBI agent Eckenrode (missing from the case by the time it was tried) that he may well have told Libby that Valerie Plame worked at the CIA at the very time Libby recalled Russert had.
The original copy of those notes was somehow missing from the prosecution's files and could not, therefore, be given to the defense -- who surely would have been able to make a great deal more of this had the agent and his notes been available at trial.
So, it was with great interest that I read that the Department of Justice attorney, Brenda Morris, already held in contempt by Judge Sullivan in the matter involving the wrongful prosecution of Senator Ted Stevens, and now under investigation by both the Department of Justice and the special prosecutor chosen by the Judge, was also a supervisor in the Libby case.
And this from the comments:
Great reporting, Clarice. It's encouraging that Eric Holder acted on the Stevens case, but my faith in federal prosecutors will not be restored unless he does the same thing in the Libby case. Patrick Fitzgerald is just as guilty as Ms. Morris and Mike Nifong. Unfortunately, DoJ and other federal institutions have a lot of left-wing activists like Ms. Morris who abuse their power for partisan politics.
When Tim Russert was first interviewed by the FBI, he admitted he could have told Libby that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA. At that time, every journalist on earth was asking "Who is Joe Wilson?" Andrea Mitchell, who worked for Russert, said it was already "widely known" among her fellow journalists covering the Washington scene who Plame was. It's absurd to believe that Russert did NOT know who Plame was when he talked to Libby.
Yet, Fitzgerald cut a deal with Russert that allowed him to change his testimony before the grand jury without any fear of perjury charges. Russert told the grand jury, and later the trial jury, that it would have been "impossible" for him to know who Plame was when he spoke to Libby. The jury foreman said that they convicted Libby based upon Russert's testimony. The jury was not allowed to hear that Russert had contradicted his earlier FBI interview.
As far as I'm concerned, there is no justice at Justice until charges are brought against Fitzgerald. The guy belongs in a federal prison.
I have always believed that Libby was convicted unfairly. Not just because he was prosecuted for reasons unrelated to the original purpose of the appointment of a special prosecutor (finding out if “outing” Plame was a crime and who did it), but because of the contradictory nature of the evidence against Libby and the deliberate exclusion of exculpatory evidence; the exclusion of exculpatory evidence which was also the case in the Stevens prosecution.