Chairman Waxman Threatens To Hold Mukasey In Contempt Over Withholding Cheney's FBI Interview About Valerie Plame
I didn't have a chance to get to this the other day. Mukasey is headed for trouble as outlined by Chairman Waxman in this video. He warns the Attorney General of a Scheduled Contempt Vote over Cheney:
Waxman; ...I have tried to investigate what really happened and the White House has resisted oversight every step of the way.
The committee's inquired has tried to penetrate the cloud surrounding VP Cheney's conduct. But today the President has asserted executive privilege and is withholding from the committee and the American people key evidence about the VP Cheney's actions. During our investigation we have learned that Mr. Libby told the FBI that it was possible that the Vice President instructed him to leak Miss Wilson's identity. That would be an extraordinary breach of trust. There is a key document that could explain what the VP knew and what he did. The report of the VP's interview with officials working from the FBI working for Mr. Fitzgerald. If there is one document that could pierce the cloud hanging over the VP, that is it.
Mr Mukasey decided that a different rule should apply to Republican Presidents than to Democratic Presidents.
The claim of executive privilege is ludicrous.
The President's actions have darkened the cloud over the VP and left important questions unanswered. As the committee considers its next steps, I hope the President and Vice President will also consider theirs. Congress and the American public are entitled to know what role the President and Vice President in the despicable outing of Miss. Wilson
AG Janet Reno provided this committee---the FBI interviews of both President Clinton and VP Gore a decade ago so what's the deal? Waxman is trying to find out what Cheney said to the FBI and is not too happy that Mukasey is blocking access to it. It sure looked like Scooter Libby was getting ready to hang Cheney out to dry unless Bush stepped in and gave him a get of jail card for free. Murray Waas wrote this great article about it a while ago:
Vice President Dick Cheney directed his then-chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, on July 12, 2003 to leak to the media portions of a then-highly classified CIA report that Cheney hoped would undermine the credibility of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson, a critic of the Bush administration's Iraq policy, according to Libby's grand jury testimony in the CIA leak case and sources who have read the classified report...read on
The Gavel: "Chairman Waxman writes Attorney General Mukasey that the Oversight Committee will vote to hold him in contempt unless the Attorney General produces a copy of the report of the FBI interview of Vice President Cheney in the investigation of the leak of the identity of Valerie Plame Wilson, a covert CIA agent."
Here's the pdf of the letter he wrote Mukasey.
Mr. Fitzgerald removed any doubt about this important point last week. He wrote the Committee that "there were no agreements, conditions, and understandings between the Office of Special Counsel or the Federal Bureau of Investigation and either the President or Vice President regarding the conduct and use of the interview or interviews."
This should get real interesting soon.