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Friday, February 24, 2006

Stacking the Deck

I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby is asking that the charges against him be dismissed. I can't say as I blame him, considering that it seems that the deck is being stacked against his defense.

A judge today agreed with the special prosecutor that Libby's defense lawyers can't have the identity of another government official who supposedly mentioned Valerie Plame's name to the press. WTF?

During a hearing Friday afternoon, Walton said Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald can keep secret the other government official's identity because that person has not been charged and has a right to privacy.
So another person has supposedly also revealed the name of the agent who's identity started the case, but Libby can't know it, as part of his defense?

But wait, it gets better, they also won't allow him to ask for the President's Daily Briefings. While they haven't said why they want them, it doesn't take a lawyer to figure out that he's probably trying to show that there was no intentional outing of the former operative.

The vice president _ his boss _ said these are the family jewels," the judge said, referring to Cheney's past description of the daily briefings. "If the executive branch says, 'This is too important to the welfare of the nation and we're not going to comply,' the criminal prosecution goes away."
So the judge is taking sides with the prosecution, vocally? Sorry, but this is starting to smell like something other than a fair trial. When the defense can't get the name of a possible witness because they haven't been charged, and you can't supenoa documents because it might cause problems?

Oh wait, they still haven't ruled if the defense can supenoa the documents, notes and reporters who testified at the Grand Jury about the Plame matter, that hearing is at the end of April. Again, WHAT! Not being able to call the people, and notes that were used by the grand jury for the indictment seems a little bit odd.

On the upside, the judge did say Libby could have his own notes from that period of time. I'm not kidding, that had to be ruled on too.

Sorry folks but unless you believe kangaroo courts should be the norm, this already stinks, and we are still eleven months from the actual trial. Which if the judge continues to rule the way he has been, should be a short one.

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Blogger asacan said...

I think the constitutional arguments of Libby's lawyers filings is much more interesting, and I'm almost certain that it will end up in the Supreme Court. Nothing against Fitzgerald, but he lacked the constitutional authority. I forget the exact filing on that, but I bet the conspiracy charges won't even go to trial.

It appears that Libby has some very capable lawyers. And I wish him all the luck in the world, but I don't think he'll need it.

1:23 PM  
Blogger Crazy Politico said...

I think the whole thing will be interesting. I don't think there is much of a case, and it will be funny to see folks go into convulsions if he gets acquitted.

9:08 PM  

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