Patrick Fitzgerald will meet today with his grand jury investigating the Plame story, and he is bringing a friend:
WASHINGTON – Top White House aide Karl Rove arrived at the federal courthouse Wednesday for his fifth grand jury appearance in the Valerie Plame affair.
…Earlier Wednesday, Rove consulted with his private lawyers in preparation of his afternoon grand jry appearance. People familiar with the case, who spoke only on condition of anonymity because of grand jury secrecy, said Rove was to answer questions about evidence that has emerged since his last grand jury appearance last fall.
That new evidence includes information that Rove’s attorney had conversations with Time magazine reporter Viveca Novak during a critical time in the case.
Months before Rove acknowledged speaking to Cooper about the CIA status of Plame, Novak told Rove’s lawyer the White House aide might have disclosed Plame’s CIA work to Cooper.
Fitzgerald has told Rove’s legal team recently that he has not made any decision on whether to charge the presidential aide and Rove hasn’t received a target notification that would indicate he is likely to be indicted, the people said.
His grand jury appearance comes a week after Rove, the architect of Bush’s election victories, gave up his policy duties at the White House as part of an administration remake to return him to a fulltime focus on politics.
Consensus opinion at the moment holds that Rove gave up his policy portfolio so that he would be a step or two away from the oval office when feds come to take him away, but that is only because I have not read many reactions from the right. Tom Maguire will doubtlessly weigh in soon about how this helps the White House.
In general I refuse to get very excited about the Plame story because anybody who does eventually go down will spend a year and a half appealing the verdict and then walk off with a presidential pardon. In the following ten or twelve years Lewis Libby and whomever else will collect ideological welfare checks from some partisan thinktank, and then when a suitable number of news cycles have come and gone they will find a happy home Elliot
AbrahamsAbrams-style in some future administration. Being disgraced is not much of an impediment for people who do not feel shame.