Thursday, June 03, 2004

Bush lawyers up

From the Knight Ridder Washington bureau (via Liberal Oasis):

President Bush has held discussions with a private attorney about possibly representing him in an ongoing grand jury investigation into who leaked the name of a CIA officer to a newspaper columnist, the White House confirmed Wednesday.

Two questions immediately come to mind:

1) Why retain counsel? Atrios has the answer:

If after the fact he knew who [leaked the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame to columnist Robert Novak], then he would likely be guilty of being an accessory after the fact for actively covering it up, depending on how his public statements, etc... diverge from the facts. And, even if not guilty of being an accessory, he could still face charges of "misprision of a felony" -- of knowing about it and not coming forward.

2) Why outside counsel? Back to Knight Ridder for the answer:

...the consultation of an outside attorney is likely related to a decision during the Whitewater investigation of the Clinton administration, in which White House attorneys couldn't assert executive privilege if asked about their conversations with the president on a possibly criminal matter. A private attorney, however, would be able to assert attorney-client privilege.

Remember, this is the guy who was gonna "restore honor and dignity to the White House." Dubya definitely has something to hide.


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