Powered by TypePad

« NoKo Nuke Deal? | Main | Keep Hope Alive! »

February 13, 2007

Comments

Pofarmer

Well, here's the deal.

Cooper impeached himself. His written notes, his story, and his statements don't add up. How do you convict on that?

Russert. We have him lying on an affidavit. We have him changing his testimony vis a vis the FBI report vs his GJ testimony. How do you convict on that?

Miller. Who me? Can't remember who her other sources were. Keeps her note in a shopping bag under her desk. No source attributions in her notes. No request for any story. How do you convict on that?

I think Fitz gets nothin.

Deagle

Let me again say that this blog is excellent (understatement - Thanks TM) and along with the contributers belong in the top ten on the internet. I have followed this trial through this blog since day one (waaay too many hours) and have come to a simple conclusion...

What the heck are they trying Libby for?

It has been very interesting and informative, but from a layman's perspective, I just do not understand why this trial is still continuing. The judge should have dismissed it long ago. Thanks for all the wonderful and insightful comments all...(Not to include the nonsensical ones...from the trolls).

If there are errors, it's just because I'm not a lawyer... :^).

let's stop lying about the LAX players, already

*I'm* the deluded one!?!

Oh, hell...forget it.

I'd say I'm sorry for even bringing this whole OT topic up, but I'm not the one who brought it up.

I just hate seeing snarky digs at people accused of horrific crimes who I think are obviously not guilty.

I will say no more.

MayBee

In the grand jury testimony, did Libby say he told Kessler that he got the information from other reporters? Did he say that's what he told Thomas?

In a vaccuum, the idea that Libby was blaming reporters and saying he learned from Russert (to protect Cheney? To save himself from an IIPA charge? To keep himself from losing his job?) kinda makes sense.
So reading the indictment, it looks like those acts add up to something.

But in the grand jury testimony itself, we learned that Libby testified he heard it from Cheney first. We learned that he talked to Cheney about possibly releasing Valerie's job. We learned he testified he told many more reporters than he actually did.

To me the additional information is the undoing of the charges.
I'm curious to see how Fitzgerald explains all of that without it getting very convoluted.

Ralph L.

TM, It's a Slam Dunk!
Oops, shouldn't have said that.
Wonder who was Woodward's source on that?

MayBee

**releasing Val's empoloyer to reporters.

Syl

I still don't understand something.

The russert bit about saying he didn't know you couldn't have a lawyer in the GJ, and the 'proof' he wasn't being truthful because he does indeed know that (tapes)....has something to do with the accommodation given him by fitz.

What does that show the jury? How is that framed. I'm a bit fuzzy on this.

MayBee

**employer.

My goodness.

clarice

Here;s how closing arguments go--and the lawyers must stuck closley to the evidence adduced at trial or be in big trouble:
Fitz makes his closing
Wells makes his
Fitz gets a short rebuttal
He's known to do stunts at this point

A prize to the JOMer who figures out the stunt this time.

clarice

**stIck*****

RichatUF

from Patrick Sullivan above...

This is known to salesmen as; DON'T TALK PAST THE CLOSE. Wells has recognized something in the jury's reaction; it's time to push the contract over to the customer and hand him a pen, with something like; 'Did you want the blue one or the red one?'

I know what you are saying but I can't get Morphus out of my head...

RichatUF

//it probably has already been said

MayBee

A prize to the JOMer who figures out the stunt this time.

He reenacts his press conference speech.

Jay Currie

Tradesports: link
------------
The bet is "convicted on one charge"

"I'm most offended by their attempts to hide very pointed heads by wearing dunce caps."

Tinfoil dunce caps.
----------

At this point there is no real need for Libby to testify and many reasons why he should not. The jury has seen him in video which should be more than enough.

The gov't case, and I use the term loosely, turns on the memories of a number of people who seem to have misremembered a lot.

If the jury is instructed to 1) presume innocence, 2) only find guilt where the presumption is rebutted by the prosecution beyond a reasonable doubt Libby should walk, 3) that such a rebuttal must prove both the fact of deception and the intent to deceive.

None of the gov't witnesses have been able to specifically and convincingly defend their stories of what Libby told them. Most have been impeached.

Worse, it is becoming clear that the investigation itself was botched or prejudicial. I suspect we are going to hear a lot about the "lost FBI notes" from Wells.

It appears that Libby told the grand jury and the FBI what he remembered. He may not have remembered right. But this is not a federal crime.

Where Fitz seems to have fizzled is that he has not brought evidence to establish Libby's motive. Without a motive - a plan to protect Cheney or screw Wilson or, realistically, to save himself - it is impossible for Fitz to prove intent. Absent intent it is tough to see how a jury can convict.

hit and run

SYL LIVES!!!!!

CHARLIE LIVES!!!!!

bmcburney

I don't understand why the defense is not being allowed to call Mitchell to testify. Most of the arguments between counsel seem to concern whether Mitchell can be called and impeached by the same party. But FRE 607 permits this and has for many years. Is there a different rule for criminal cases?

I understand that Mitchell would not be allowed to testify if her only purpose was to impeach Russert on a collateral issue. This does not seem all that collateral but, even if it were, the fact of whether "all the reporters knew" seems directly relevant to the issue of the "materiality" of Libby's alleged perjury. Thus, even if Russert had not testified or had testified favorably to Libby the defense would still be entitled to present evidence that Libby's alleged perjury had no impact on the investigation because, after all, "everybody knew."

Please explain.

clarice

I think it error myself so I can't defend it.

Sara (Squiggler

Charlie, you are right okay. I prefer to wait to judge the victim's words until I hear them from her mouth not through the mouths of 3rd parties, some with their own agenda.

As a faculty member, you know that the university and the athletic dept. would be in their rights to suspend these students from the team, or from school, or from their scholarships just based on their behavior even with out any charges by the alleged victim. Even if the event never happened. Instead we hear how these boys have had their lives ruined, their reputations ruined, blah blah blah.

I don't know what happened in that house that night. I believe something did based on some facts of the case. Maybe that is my bias, but I have made no attempt to hide the reasons for my bias. I realize that we have a totally unsympathetic victim, at least as she has been portrayed in the media. Now, I'm done discussing this and I'll leave it to those interested to continue to follow the case.

hit and run

Jay Currie:
The gov't case, and I use the term loosely


I have a better case than the government.

24 of my best friends -- and they don't have tinfoil hats. They have twist-off caps.

clarice

I don't know what happened in YOUR house last night, but unless I can meet a threshold level of evidence to haul you into court to prove that it wasn't illegal, you're not to be put to trial. And that is the case here..not even credible evidence to believe a crime was committed to continue this or to have brought it in the first place..your cultural prejudices to the contrary notwithstanding, Sara.

Ralph L.

BMcB, I would have thought it would only have been material if Russert claimed Libby told him, but I'm not a lawyer. I thought the TV lawyers completely misargued the materiality of Clinton's Monica lies, too, but in the other direction.

vnjagvet

MayBee:

I think your summary of the facts makes the obstruction charges go away [the allegedly obstructing statements didn't obstruct anything in light of Libby's other disclosures], and makes the materiality element go away in the perjury charges [because Libby truthfully revealed Cheney's original disclosures of Plame's CIA employment, whatever discrepencies existed between the testimony before the GJ regarding Libby's phone conversations with Russert and Cooper were not material to anything the SP was investigating.].

And I think that summary is accurate from what I have read.

I also think that Wells closing argument will make those points using every combination and permutation of them.

Patrick

Sara

Seems to me you should at least recognize the defense offered on behalf of the LAX team is that they did not rape the woman. This is quite apart from any ugly comments made purportedly on behalf of the players.

Aside from that, don you not recognize the weakness of the evidence, and the presumption of innocence for the "frat boys?"

Rick Ballard

My bet is that Fitz goes farther with the big case in his rebuttal to the defense closing than he has at any point in the trial. He's not even doing the prosecution close and I think he's going to intentionally risk serious sanction in order to make a last stab at a win.

hit and run

Is this a better TradeSports link

When I clicked on yours, it took me to what looked like a more generic page that listed '08 presidential nominees...

Syl

Fitz makes his closing

Wells makes his

Fitz turns to the jury, tears off his shirt, revealing the tattoo on his chest:

IT'S CHENEY, STUPID!


Pofarmer

What does that show the jury? How is that framed. I'm a bit fuzzy on this.

Shows Russert is dishonest?

bmcburney

Ralph L,

No, it can't be that. If Russert had agreed with Libby there would have been no perjury because Libby would have testified truthfully. Here, the materiality issue is that even if we assume Russert did not tell Libby that "all the reporters knew," it was not material because, in fact, all of the reporters actually did know. Therefore, the investigation was not misled or delayed by Libby claiming that Russert said it.

But its all good. As long as Clarice agrees with me I know I must be right.

hit and run

From FDL earlier today:

Fitz Zeidenberg is doing the summation, I'll do rebuttal.

I went and looked it up after Rick's comment. NOT NOT NOT because I would ever question Rick. No, because it seemed like an easy way to make myself look useful.

PaulL

I think Fitz said today that the other guy (Z? maybe) is closing, and that Fitz will do only the rebuttal.

Crash

Sara (Squiggler,

I'm a regular reader but have never felt a strong urge to post. Until now. Your comments have soiled this community.

Please move over to dailyKos. No one wants you here.

Thank you.

Syl

Shows Russert is dishonest?

Yeah. And if Wells gets across that both Cooper and Miller, who's testimony was used in charging Libby, testified to the GJ without lawyers, Russert didn't because?

Russert was chicken?
Russert was 'special'?
Fitz didn't care?
Fitz?

Ralph L.

In the rebuttal, Fitz concedes that reporters are no smarter or trustworthy than politicians or (some) lawyers. The jurors snort and chortle.

Other Tom

Can we--please--talk about materiality?

I think it is the linchpin of the defense in light of the evidence to date. It is my understanding that materiality is an element of the crime of making false statements (18 US Code Section 1001). It is also (certainly by implication) an element of the crime of obstruction of justice (Section 1503). And it is expressly an element of the crime of perjury.

If you accept every shred of evidence in the light most unfavorable to Libby, where is the evidence that anything he did was material? To WHAT was it material?

hit and run

Please move over to dailyKos. No one wants you here.

Crash, you're wrong. I want Sara here.

Disagree on the Duke case? Sure.

Love Sara? Yes. Much more important to me.

Sara (Squiggler

Patrick -- of course I do,. I cut the prosecutor no slack at all. I also agree that the evidence as described seems weak, but rape requires intercourse. Sexual assault covers sodomy and other heinous activities. So eliminating the rape charge doesn't really solve the problem. Despite the weakness, there are a couple of facts that give me pause. I just don't see how that is so unreasonable, especially since to date there has been no trial.

I have a son and a daughter. If it were my son, a Mother's love would want you on the jury. If it was my daughter, I would hope there was someone like me on the jury who wouldn't prejudge her.

Deagle

Sara,

And your comments on the Libby trial have been so enlightened... Seems to be a built in prejudice rather than reason with the Duke case.

hit and run

Other Tom:
Can we--please--talk about materiality?

Gosh OT, for someone who started drinking margaritas at 11am this morning, you sure seem uptight? ::grin::

Rick Ballard

Is it possible that the materiality aspect was bargained away in either CIPA or big case negotiations?

IOW - what did Fitz get for letting go of the big case? He's dropped all the prejudicial language used in the presser and the indictment. Why?

Kazinski

Crash:
Sara is entitled to her opinion however wrong.

Sara:
You attempt to be fair minded by saying you're open to changing your mind depending on what the prosecutor can prove in court, but surely you have to acknowlege that there are some cases that have no business making it to court. And the Duke LAX case is certainly one of those. And I'd say that even if a video tape surfaces proving every word the accuser said, prosecutorial misconduct should require that the case still be thrown out.

MayBee

Syl- I think it's a bit of a twofer. The first thing you've mentioned, of course. Russert was special, Russert was chicken, Fitz didn't care, Fitz.

But it also drives home to the jurors that all of that testimony they heard from Libby was done without his attorneys present.
Finally with the Clinton reference included, there's the off chance that they will remind at least one juror how deeply unfair these special prosecutions can be, and how far away from the crime the charges turn out to be.

Ralph L.

In the Duke case, there was considerable police misconduct and/or errors which Nifong ignored, willfully IMO, so he could get re-elected.

Crash

hit and run,

We're all entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts.

This site deserves better than what Sara is offering on rape. She needs to take it somewhere else.

Thank you. Good night all.

clarice

I once did a long bit on materiality in this case but cannot find it.
The short form is the perjury or false statement ( or obstruction by falsely testifying)must have the potential to effect the outcome of the investigation.

If this were a leak case, perhaps Fitz could argue that it was significant if Libby had lied and told him he learned from reporters when he had heard it officially, but it isn't. Additionally, Libby told him from minute one he learned about Wilson in early June from the VP.

So I can't see how whatever Russert told him or he told Miller or Cooper amounts to a hill of beans.

Ralph L.

Other Tom: that's exactly what I think.
Other Other Tom: If we stay up much later, can we have another thread and a glass of milk?

MayBee

Rick- I thought the judge made Fitzgerald limit this trial to the little case.
So materiality became circular:
-At some point, Fitzgerald received permission to expand the investigation into side issues, such as materiality
-The indictment was for perjury/obstruction
-The trial case was limited to perjury/obstruction
-Therefore, the perjury is material because Libby lied in an investigation into his possible perjury

Alcibiades

I put my latest post Just Deserts.

Now I'll have to catch up with the 100 or so comments that were written while I was writing. [g]

MayBee

****side issues such as perjury.


I am a bloomin' idiot today.

sferris

Tradesports currently has Libby being found guilty of at least one of the five charges brought against him at $67. This is a rise of $6.6 on the day. The money is on his conviction. Personally, I don't think the jury is going to believe Libby's "I don't know if he has a wife." I would bet on it...

Christopher Fotos

I'll be posting about WaPo's Wednesday coverage in a bit. They did it again, by the way, overwriting Leonnig/Goldstein's mid-afternoon file, which had the decision not to have Libby or Cheney testify puttng "added pressure on defense attorneys' closing arguments." The new version, running tomorrow, is faithful to their consistent version of events which means it is nearly completely innocent of massive memory loss by witnesses not named Libby and, of course, anything that undermines Russert.

Because that would be impossible.

hit and run

Crash:
We're all entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts.

This coming from the person who claimed as fact that no one wanted Sara here.

clarice

Watch for the filings..I expect the minute the defense closes we see a Rule 29 motion with big emphasis on materiality .

Jeff

If this were a leak case, perhaps Fitz could argue that it was significant if Libby had lied and told him he learned from reporters when he had heard it officially, but it isn't.

Too funny! So if this were a leak case, he could make the case that it was a perjury case. But since it's a perjury case, he can't argue that the investigation was a leak investigation, where telling the truth about how you learned about and disseminated information about Plame mattered?

Sara (Squiggler

From cbolt's site, Fitz filing 2/13/2007, there is this:

Obviously, the government offered the defendant's testimony to prove that he made the charged false statements,to provide context for the charged statements, and to show materiality (which showing is necessarily limited to the questions asked, rather than the answers given). The government did not offer the defendant's grand jury testimony as admission under Fed. R. Evid. 801(d)(2). It would be particularly nonsensical to construe the government's introduction of defendant's grand jury testimony as admissions offered for their truth given the nature of the charges -- perjury and obstruction of justice.

Can someone explain in layman's terms.

cathyf

Suppose Libby's "obstruction" had gone "undetected" and had "succeeded." The FBI, and later Fitzgerald when he came on the case, would have been "misled" into believing that someone *cough*Armitage*cough*Fleischer*cough* had leaked to some reporters *cough*Woodward*cough**cough*Mitchell*cough*Miller about Plame long before the Novak-Armitage chat.

Oh, no, wait a minute, that would have been the truth...

Ok, try again... Libby's crime is that he should have lied, and done it really convincingly. By telling the truth, but unconvincingly, Libby seduced the FBI and Fitzgerald, and lured them away from conducting the leak investigation that they were charged with. The trained professionals with the decades of experience were utterly helpless against the siren song of their own prejudice and stupidity, and so it's Libby's fault for leading them on.

hit and run

MayBee:
I am a bloomin' idiot today.

Well, that small mistake notwithstanding, that post was very crisp clean clear and refreshing.

Where's my case?!?!!!?

PaulL

So far Walton has been rather obtuse, with only a few hints at insight. He's continuously taking the government's position and blocking Libby's lawyers. I don't see him dismissing anything.

clarice

What difference does it make if (as he said) he told Cooper but Cooper says HE told Libby.
What difference does it make if Miller thinks but can't be absolutely certain he told her and Libby says he might have but doesn't think he did on June 23?
What difference does it make if Russert told Libby or someone else did?
In the absence of intent to lie and the total insignificance to the course of the investigation, what's material here?
He TOLD the investigators from the very beginning he heard it from Cheney.

Deagle

H&T,

Your beating a dead dog...so to speak. I'm sure that everyone has already formed their opinion regarding the Duke trial...and so does Sara.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

Waltoon is going to discover the "nice" press will eat him alive.

I caught how this is done, when Obama ran into DRUDGE's shredder, following the 60-minutes interview; and Drudge's write-off. Obama's is not going to be taken seriously, anymore. Let alone that slogan "GET OUT OF YOUR SLUMBER."

Waltoon will discover that today Americans aren't so forgiving about giving blacks "extra props" to law school. And, the arrangements out of affirmative action that hoisted him up on the bench.

Today?

Walton said to Wells he won't allow Libby being portrayed as working on anything "difficult" while he handled Cheney's agenda "IF LIBBY REFUSES TO TAKE THE STAND."

So Wells will have to tailor his close around this.

But when the hammer falls? Won't be kind to Waltoon. And, won't be kind to Russert.

The big leagues also ate Dan RaTHer alive.

Heck, even Kofi Anan hasn't got much to show for his "leadership" role at the UN. Other than the fact that he has a very good tailor. And, more African money than anything Rep. Jefferson put in his New Orleans freezer.

Waltoon is a jerk.

Meanwhile? DRUDGE has a headline up that when you link to it, takes to to the NY Times article that says "WELLS IS CONFIDENT THAT LIBBY WILL BE FOUND INNOCENT."

Wells will have the reputation, ahead, not Waltoon.

And, you can go to DRUDGE and look. Seems like the NY Times isn't part of Waltoon's railroad track, anymore.

JM Hanes

MarkO

I was referring to your rush to pass judgement on Sara. I did not fault you for hypocrisy, I faulted your arrogance.

hit and run

I'm beating a dead dog? I haven't even discussed the Duke case. And won't. I simply defended Sara's right not to be banished to dailyKos. That dog is alive and growling.

I was going to post a link to the last JOM Duke thread to offer anyone who wanted to go there to discuss it. But thought better of it because I am probably the most egregious off topic poster here. Or at least the most egregious marginally tangential topic poster.

Sorry, just got worked up about it.

Pofarmer

Sara

I think what that's saying is that, according to the prosecutor, Libby is still lying, that entering his GJ testimony into evidence does not make it true.

However, I ain't no lawyer. How did I do?

Syl

OT

re: obstruction, I'll try from fitz POV, okay?

Fitz says he was investigating leak of classified information and the possible outing of a covert agent's affiliation with CIA.

And though Fitz knew at the time he was appointed who the leaker to Novak was, he did not know who the confirming source was. The confirmer is just as guilty as the original leaker. (And there was something about the NIE, as far as we know, included in the investigation.)

Fitz was looking for the other source. (and source for the NIE 'leaks' as well)

While Fitz is gathering evidence and interviewing people in the administration and making lists of possible journalists to question, the information Libby gave him basically said that reporters KNEW this information even before Novak had printed his article.

This widened the scope of the investigation considerably. Someone had told a reporter even before Novak. So instead of just finding the confirming source, he also had verify Libby's testimony by getting testimony from the journalists libby spoke with.

Libby's testimony also showed that Libby couldn't have been a leaker because he was just passing along gossip as gossip.

Fitz already had Russert's FBI statement so he may have been suspicious already.

Then along comes Judy and June 23rd, which was before all the 'activity' inside the administration.

Fitz thought that AHA Libby was the FIRST to leak and made up the whole story so Libby couldn't be considered a leaker.

'All the reporters knew' was a sham, a lie, and obstruction.

cboldt would be proud of me :)

-------

IOW it wasn't that Libby said he told so-and-so, overconfessed, underconfessed, whatever, it was the 'all the reporters knew it' bit that was the obstruction.

(and that the journalists said libby didn't pass it along as gossip was icing.)

Ralph L.

Doesn't Fitz have to prove materiality as an element of the crime? Did he even mention it in his case?

Syl

BTW

I don't think fitz came close to proving this.

PaulL

Don't look now, but there's a new thread.

MayBee

In the absence of intent to lie and the total insignificance to the course of the investigation, what's material here?
He TOLD the investigators from the very beginning he heard it from Cheney.

Exactly, clarice. Jeff has told us a million times about how the timing and the sourcing of the "lies" was created to protect Cheney...and I still don't get it.
Turning in a note that he had about Cheney telling him in June, admitting they'd talked about it, telling other reporters ALL negates/mitigates any grand unifying theory.
Conviction will happen if the jurors decide that Libby's testimony didn't match other people's testimony. Period.

Kazinski

My prediction on the case is a mistrial. I think there will be at least one BDS(or CDS which may be for virtulent) dead ender on the jury, and at least one person that wouldn't convict a mangy cur on the evidence that Fitz put on.

Then the question is whether Fitz has the guts to go to the mat again with Wells.

Pofarmer

'All the reporters knew' was a sham, a lie, and obstruction.

So why didn't he, like, question more of em and find out?

Syl

MayBee

Syl- I think it's a bit of a twofer.

Thanks for your response!

Yeah, I'm sure Wells will handle this skillfully and get it all in the juror's heads.

Ralph L.

H&R, I have not yet begun to post off topic!

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

I LOVE MARK O!

And, Sara (the squiggler's) just wrong.

I laughed at Bulushi in Animal House. And, later learned the events really happened at Dartmouth.

I laughed when watching Borat. And, learned that the "frat boys" in that picture were fed enough liquor, to get them plastered. But their case was tossed from court.

I also know NiFong played with the rules. And, the LaCrosse team members are innocent.

I also know it never cost Al Sharpton anything, by attaching himself to Tawana Brawley. A black kid afraid to go home. So she schmeared kaka on herself. And, blamed the cops.

It's wrong to frame cops. It was wrong of Tawana Brawley. And, up ahead? We may be looking at lots of Americans looking at what affirmative action has wrought.

Is Libby, for instance, a bigot? Absolutely NOT! He hired Wells, and he's married to a beautiful black woman, who is also a lawyer.

Sometimes, when the chips fall where they may; it becomes obvious that the Waltoon's are the ones who go crazy with power.

And, lucky for the La Crosse players, that among the dishonest way Nifong stacked the deck (only showing the lying, pregnant bitch, photos of team members, so she could "pre-select") ... got one guy who went to the ATM machine for money. So there's a time stamp, and bank photo, of his innocence.

And, another kid was on the cell phone (providing a record), talking to his girl friend.

Is it easier to jump to conclusions about the La Crosse players, or Waltoon? I've opted for Waltoon. And, I'm sick and tired of affirmative action, and PC inhibitions, to boot.

On the other hand? Clarice is among the best attorneys commenting here. And, Wells, is TOPS. Did it take special considerations to get WELLS into law school? WHY? He's got outstanding skills.

That's what Amerians want to measure.

Cecil Turner

Are people confident? I am sort of gloomily resigned to the jury figuring he must be guilty of something, but I am planning to go through the indictment and perk myself up.

I'm thinkin' the same. Barring a miraculous close, I bet he gets convicted on something. If for no other reason than having to listen to eight hours of rambling, the average juror's gotta be pissed. And if we and FDL are any indication, there will be folks on each side with strongly-held views and little common ground. A couple thrown outs/acquittals, perhaps hung on one or two, and a compromise token conviction. (I'm betting count five--lotsa loose verbiage in that one.) Then it gets overturned on appeal, or he gets pardoned.

Personally, I don't think the jury is going to believe Libby's "I don't know if he has a wife." I would bet on it...

Hey, some agreement: charge five is the best bet. But I wouldn't take that Tradesports contract. Reading the fine print: a mistrial, hung jury, or a plea all reduce the value of the contract to zero. Adding in those probablilities, I don't want any part of a 2-1 on bet.

Syl

I see fitz' thinking but he couldn't nail it because it's circumstantial, depends on he said/she said, depends only on memory of conversations, and Libby's 'lie' makes no sense because it doesn't cover what Libby even testified to before July 11th.

Wells gave us reasons to believe Libby did not lie but merely misrembered. Wells also showed some unfairness towards Libby (Bond, Russert/gj). Fuzzy memories all around. Not to mention that pitiful testimony by Cooper, Miller's selective memory, and possible untrustworthy testimony from Russert.

There is a completely plausible scenario that supports Libby's version which is simple and not farfetched. And Wells will nail it in summary.

cathyf
...it was the 'all the reporters knew it' bit that was the obstruction.
But when Libby said 'all the reporters knew it' this was in a context where he was quoting/paraphrasing someone else. In other words, it was absolutely clear to all involved that he was repeating hearsay and obviously he had no way of knowing whether it was true or not. It was simply an investigative lead -- it was the investigators' job to use their skills and resources to run down how many reporters knew.

And, in fact, as we have learned in the trial (thanks to the defense, no thanks to the prosecution) it was true that a s***load of reporters did know.

Syl

pofarmer

So why didn't he, like, question more of em and find out?

Yeah, and Wells pointed that out with Woodward's testimony.

It was Armitage, not Libby, who obstructed the investigation. Libby pointed him in the right direction!!

Jeff

What difference does it make if (as he said) he told Cooper but Cooper says HE told Libby.
What difference does it make if Miller thinks but can't be absolutely certain he told her and Libby says he might have but doesn't think he did on June 23?
What difference does it make if Russert told Libby or someone else did?
In the absence of intent to lie and the total insignificance to the course of the investigation, what's material here?
He TOLD the investigators from the very beginning he heard it from Cheney.

This frankly astonishes me. 1. The issue with Cooper is not narrowly and in isolation who told whom. The issue is that Libby told Cooper that the information was simply reporters' gossip which Libby did not know the truth of, which served to obstruct the investigation into how Libby learned the information and how he conveyed it. 2. I'm not sure why you focus on the June 23 conversation with Miller, since it doesn't bulk very large in the indictment. 3. It makes a difference whether Russert told him or not because Libby's entire story hinged on the notion that he learned from Russert about Plame as though for the first time, and thereby only gained knowledge of Plame as reportial rumor or gossip, of which he did not know the truth, and conveyed it as such.

And pretty obviously, those things go to whether Libby might have been vulnerable to charges for having conveyed his alleged knowledge of Plame to those not entitled to receive it. So apart from the notion of absence or presence of intent to lie is of course a subject of proof in the context of the trial - so it's hard to see what you gain from merely asserting its absence - there are answers to your question about the insignificance of the investigation.

As for the fact that Libby told investigators that Cheney had told him initially about Plame, I'm not sure what you're making of that fact. See, Libby's story was that Cheney had told him that, but he only remembered it in fall 2003 as he was preparing to speak with investigators. Neither the purported Russert revelation nor anything else in summer 2003 reminded Libby that Cheney had told him. So insofar as you're trying to suggest that Libby was not hiding the fact that he had learned of Plame from Cheney, that's not quite right - the basic accusation, in that regard, is that he was hiding the fact that in July 2003 what Libby had learned from Cheney of Plame played any role in Libby's own conduct.

Carol Herman

FM: CAROL HERMAN
TO: CLARICE

Okay, For the "stunt" Fitz takes out his Rosary and starts counting beads. Ticking off the 1x2x6.

Bead one is Libby.

Two beads are Miller and [not russert] but NOVAK*

Then, six. All the dwarves in Snow White's story, whose name you can recall off the top of your head.

HOWEVER, at this point in time, I do not think the jurors believe Russert. (With or without the video, from 1998. Where Russert explained to his audience that poor president clinton, couldn't have a lawyer in the room when he was questioned about "not having sex with that woman.")

Of course, Russert IS a lawyer! So there's a lawyer in any room he is in.

Ditto for Bubba. Bubba is a lawyer. Married to a lawyer. So if he were poking his wife, that would be two lawyers in bed together. But Bill no longer schtupps hill. Meaning? Bubba is ONE SMART COOKIE.

Waltoon? A maroon.

Syl

cathyf

Okay, it wasn't 'all the reporters knew it'. It was 'I heard it from a reporter'.

Better? :)

Fitz' FIRST thought should have been:

WHO ELSE DID ARMITAGE TELL?

Jeff

If for no other reason than having to listen to eight hours of rambling, the average juror's gotta be pissed.

Lawyers tell me, though, that said juror is more likely to be pissed at, or tune out the claims of, the prosecution in consequence. As an attorney, you want to sharpen the grand jury stuff you give the jury to as fine a point as possible. And in fact that seemed to be Fitzgerald's initial intention, but I suspect he was faced with the requirement that he could only enter into evidence what he published to the jury, and so he went for the whole thing.

Eric Stahlfeld

Is it possible that the standard to show materiality has a very low threshold? Clarice wrote that Libby's testimony "must have the potential to [a]ffect the outcome of the investigation," and suggested that once Libby told the FBI and GJ he learned Plame's identity from Cheney he could not possibly have misled them concerning an IIPA charge, because the FBI then would know he received that information from an official source and disclosed it to at least one journalist, leaving only the question whether Plame was protected by the act.
But by incorrectly stating to which reporters he talked to, Libby could have caused the FBI and GJ to expend resources to follow up on information that turned out to be incorrect, thus potentially affecting the outcome of the investigation. If the FBI didn't check Libby, his misstatement very well may have changed the outcome of the investigation. It certainly has the potential to do so, whether Libby learned of Plame from Cheney or not. That the FBI eventually discovered the truth of whom Libby talked to, or even conducted a shoddy investigation, doesn't change the argument that Libby's statements of whom he talked to had the potential to change the outcome of the investigation. If Plame were covered, then Libby was well on the way to incriminating himself, wasn't he? Doesn't that make his statements "material?"
I have much more trouble with the argument that once Fitzgerald knew Plame was not covered, then there could be no IIPA charge, in which case there could be no different outcome -- legal thinking stresses that failure to prove just one element of a charge results in the failure of the entire charge. With no different outcome possible, then Libby's statements could not have the "potential" to change the outcome, and therefore would not be "material." But the judge seems to have thrown that aspect of the case out the window (subject to argument on appeal, I suppose).
Anyway, I also have wondered about materiality for over a year. It sometimes seems to me that all that is necessary is for a GJ member to think a question is important enough to ask, for the information to be material. That's an awfully low threshold, but I'd love to see how courts have defined materiality.

Cecil Turner

Jeff, if it takes that long to explain something, my instinctive reaction is that it fails the common sense test (and Occam's Razor, if we want to get technical).

Libby didn't need an explanation for his leaks, and over-confessing on Cooper and Kessler makes zero sense. On those points, he obviously forgot.

Might he have been purveying a nefarious lie on the others? Sure, it's possible. Or he might've just forgot.

MayBee

1. The issue with Cooper is not narrowly and in isolation who told whom. The issue is that Libby told Cooper that the information was simply reporters' gossip which Libby did not know the truth of, which served to obstruct the investigation into how Libby learned the information and how he conveyed it.

What Libby told Cooper can't be obstruction of justice. Only what Libby told the investigators/grand jury can be. He told investigators what he had told Cooper at the same time he told them Cheney had actually told him, in October 2003.
So, in reality, there was no obstruction to the investigation. At least on that count.

Syl

Jeff

So insofar as you're trying to suggest that Libby was not hiding the fact that he had learned of Plame from Cheney, that's not quite right - the basic accusation, in that regard, is that he was hiding the fact that in July 2003 what Libby had learned from Cheney of Plame played any role in Libby's own conduct.

I actually agree with you on this. I covered this in my fitz POV post. Fitz thinks Libby was trying to show he couldn't have been a leaker.

But what I think is 'cute' is that you project further (not necessarily in this post but inferences in others) that because Libby 'hid' he got his knowledge of wifey's affiliation, he was protecting Cheney.

And THAT is false. Whether you think he lied that he forgot, or he forgot, he DID testify that he first got the info from, guess who, Cheney.

Syl

Jeff

IOW..IF Libby lied (and I do NOT believe he did), but IF he lied, he lied to protect HIMSELF, not Cheney.

Cecil Turner

Lawyers tell me, though, that said juror is more likely to be pissed at, or tune out the claims of, the prosecution in consequence.

Could be. But I think if I had to listen to 8 hours of some guy (Libby) droning . . . I'd be pissed at the guy droning. In any event, I'd say the Defense's reluctance to give them another voice sample to work on was probably a good move.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

Waltoon is going to discover the "nice" press will eat him alive.

I caught how this is done, when Obama ran into DRUDGE's shredder, following the 60-minutes interview; and Drudge's write-off. Obama's is not going to be taken seriously, anymore. Let alone that slogan "GET OUT OF YOUR SLUMBER."

Oh, and Sara. When a miscarriage of justice takes place, there's always the avenue of civil law. I think the 3 LaCrosse players will OWN a big chunk of DUKE. Right now? One player graduated. The other two have been "invited back." But I think, on the advice of counsel they are not going back to the school. So? The school will lose the tuition money these kids would fork over "for the pleasure of attending."

Sometimes, when you talk of "SCREWING" you should be aware of who gets the money. And, who didn't get the "pleasure."

People who attended Duke are disgusted by both the 88-idiot academics who teach nothing worthwhile. And, what it does to the credential of those who worked to earn one.

Of course, college professors live in ivory towers. They think power is in their parking spaces. And, tenure. But in WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRINIA WOOLFE, people learned it's not much of a life. After all.

Waltoon will discover that today Americans aren't so forgiving about giving blacks "extra props" to law school. And, the arrangements out of affirmative action that hoisted him up on the bench.

Today?

Walton said to Wells he won't allow Libby being portrayed as working on anything "difficult" while he handled Cheney's agenda "IF LIBBY REFUSES TO TAKE THE STAND."

So Wells will have to tailor his close around this.

But when the hammer falls? Won't be kind to Waltoon. And, won't be kind to Russert.

The big leagues also ate Dan RaTHer alive.

Heck, even Kofi Anan hasn't got much to show for his "leadership" role at the UN. Other than the fact that he has a very good tailor. And, more African money than anything Rep. Jefferson put in his New Orleans freezer.

Waltoon is a jerk.

Meanwhile? DRUDGE has a headline up that when you link to it, takes to to the NY Times article that says "WELLS IS CONFIDENT THAT LIBBY WILL BE FOUND INNOCENT."

Wells will have the reputation, ahead, not Waltoon.

And, you can go to DRUDGE and look. Seems like the NY Times isn't part of Waltoon's railroad track, anymore.

cathyf
The issue is that Libby told Cooper that the information was simply reporters' gossip which Libby did not know the truth of, which served to obstruct the investigation into how Libby learned the information and how he conveyed it.
But according to Cooper's notes, (given the most plausible interpretation of Cooper's appalling spelling) what Libby said happened is what happened. In order for a "false statement" to constitute "obstruction of justice" the statement has to be, at bare minimum, false.
MayBee

IOW..IF Libby lied (and I do NOT believe he did), but IF he lied, he lied to protect HIMSELF, not Cheney.

Yes, and it actually makes more sense that way. He protected Cheney from absolutely nothing.
In fact, I predict that Fitzgerald will argue that Libby lied to protect himself from Cheney, because he'd used info from Cheney out of turn. Furthermore, I think Fitzgerald believes that.

Jeff

IF Libby lied (and I do NOT believe he did), but IF he lied, he lied to protect HIMSELF, not Cheney.

It's possible that's what Fitzgerald will argue. Those are obviously not mutually exclusive alternatives. One thing to consider is that given the existence of his note adverting to having heard from Cheney in June, Libby constructed a story that maximally distanced Cheney from his own actions, in the sense that Cheney having told Libby plays absolutely no role in explaining Libby's conduct in July 2003, according to Libby's story.

Beyond that, it's worth remembering that Libby was not specifically charged for each deliberate falsehood that Fitzgerald believes Libby told, and that Fitzgerald believes that Libby also told falsehoods about Cheney's role in directing Libby's conduct and expressing his desires to Libby in July 2003.

Charlie (Colorado)

As a faculty member, you know that the university and the athletic dept. would be in their rights to suspend these students from the team, or from school, or from their scholarships just based on their behavior even with out any charges by the alleged victim. Even if the event never happened. Instead we hear how these boys have had their lives ruined, their reputations ruined, blah blah blah.

Sara, I'm sorry, but that's not true either. Even drunken frat boys get the presumption of innocence, and are entitled to due process. If Duke suspended every student who drank under age, the place would be empty. And, believe it or not, hiring a stripper, or even two strippers, to come to a private home off campus isn't illegal. You may not like it, you may think it's immoral, but it's not illegal, and Duke would have one hell of a time claiming that it can punish students for that.

In the mean time, you've got a prosecutor who conspired with a contractor to conceal evidence --- and remember, this was something they admitted to only grudgingly, what Clarice would call an "admission against interest" --- who is this close to being disbarred or sanctioned, and a "rape" for which there is no physical evidence whatsoever. Oh, and a "victim" who's told at least five independent, inconsistent stories.

In that situation, I think you could reasonably go a lot farther in the presumption of innocence than to claim this is a "boys will be boys" defense.

Syl

Jeff

Fitzgerald believes that Libby also told falsehoods about Cheney's role in directing Libby's conduct and expressing his desires to Libby in July 2003.

Where did you concoct this little fantasy? There is no evidence that fitz believes this.

Nada.

Unless you think the NIE, and de-classification of it, have the wifey anywhere inside.

Charlie (Colorado)

Please move over to dailyKos. No one wants you here.

Crash, in the immortal words of Pricilla Alden, why don't yuo speak for yourself?

Charlie (Colorado)

I just want to recognize that Jeff has actually said some rational things that make an actual argument.

Someone give him a cookie, we want to reinforce this.

Syl

Jeff

It doesn't matter who told Libby FIRST. Doesn't matter at all. It only matters that Libby had gotten it from someone official.

It doesn't even matter that Cheney told Libby. They BOTH have the clearance.

Libby distanced himself from OFFICIAL KNOWLEDGE. And since you so smugly point out all the instances where Libby got the information from others, he was distancing himself from ALL of them.

You'd be surprised at the high security clearance even PR people have in any administration.

Hell, maybe Libby was protecting Cathie Martin.

But I still say protecting from WHAT? That one cleared person had told another cleared person wifey was CIA? There's nothing to protect.

The rule is, if the person works for the CIA in ANY shape or form, ask if it's okay to divulge the fact they are employed by CIA.

Reality-based my a** it's more like wishfullment-based.


Sara (Squiggler

Oh, and a "victim" who's told at least five independent, inconsistent stories.

-------

Csn you send me an email with links to her making the statements? Not a report of something her father said she said or that the other dancer said she said or the cop said he throught she said, but interviews of her own. Perhaps I am missing a big chunk.

clarice

Sara, this is well documented in the court filings all of which you may find at Durham in Wonderland (the JOM of the Duke case).

You and Sylvia do yourselves no good by ignoring the facts and insisting the rest of us must do so, too.

Syl

It's great to back, heh, Charlie>

::waving::

Syl

Note, for the record, Sylvia and Syl are two different people.

(I have never mentioned one word on the Duke case, to my recollection. And I know I have not participated in any Duke specific threads.)

Sara (Squiggler

Clarice, I have never once suggested that you or anyone else should ignore any facts. And, I really resent the attitude. I think the Duke case has 3 components. 1 is the Prosecution. I don't think we are in any way in contradiction on #1. 2 is the LaCrosse defense. 3 is the alleged victim.

You combine 1 and 3 and see them as guilty and 2 innocent. I say 1 is a jerk who will do anything to win a case. 2 may be victims of 1 maybe. 3 maybe a victim of 2.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Wilson/Plame