Does the Scooter Libby pardon have implications for the Russian Federation probe?


Libby was prosecuted for lying to the FBI and for obstruction of justice in an investigation into who leaked the identity of covert Central Intelligence Agency operative Valerie Plame.

Libby was sentenced to 30 months in prison and fined $250,000, but his sentence was commuted by then-President George W. Bush.

In the first pardon, Trump did not follow his predecessors' practice of consulting with lawyers at the Justice Department before announcing his decision.

Given the nature of Libby's crimes, Trump came under fire from critics Friday after he took to Twitter to accuse former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James B. Comey of leaking classified information and lying to Congress.

"Today, President Trump issued an Executive Grant of Clemency (Full Pardon) to I".

The White House said in a press statement on Friday in Washington.

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"It's not about me, it's absolutely not about "Scooter" Libby", she said. In a twist, the special counsel in Libby's case, Patrick Fitzgerald, was appointed by James Comey, deputy attorney general at the time. The pardon comes at a moment when the president faces an escalating special counsel investigation of his own.

"Legally, there's nothing wrong with pardons that the president just decides themselves", Brian C. Kalt, a professor at Michigan State University School of Law, said in a statement. David Andrews plays Scooter Libby in the film.

A spokesman for Bush said Friday that the former president was "very pleased" for Libby and his family. What's more, it reminds us as well how the slightest miscue in testimony - i.e., "lying to the FBI" - can put even the most honorable men behind bars.

In the case of Mr. Libby, our view is that President Trump did the right thing.

Conservatives have rallied around Libby's case, arguing he was the victim of an overly zealous and politically motivated prosecution by a special counsel.

Why didn't Bush pardon Libby? He added, "And if a person does not tell the truth, particularly if he serves in government and holds the public trust, he must be held accountable". He granted one previous year for former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was awaiting sentencing for contempt of court. The CIA requested a Department of Justice investigation into the naming of Plame as an agent - a breach of classified information. He served as FBI Director from 2013-2017 when he was sacked by Trump. Wilson believed her name was leaked by the Bush administration as part of a smear campaign against him. "One is witnesses in the current special counsel investigation who are being alerted to the president's willingness to pardon those who obstruct justice and lie in the context of important national security investigations". Libby had pleaded not guilty to all charges.