Balkinization  

Friday, June 08, 2007

Scooter Libby and Paris Hilton as icons of the American legal system

Sandy Levinson

The two most visible legal miscreants in the country today are Lewis "Scooter" Libby and Paris Hilton, and both for the very same reason: Is it just to make such persons go to jail, perhaps at all, let alone for up to 30 months (or, as in Ms. Hilton's case, for 23 days)? Ms. Hilton, of course, received a temporary reprieve from the LA sheriff's office, though the almost unanimous condemnation of the remarkably special treatment given the young heiress suggests that she might find herself back in jail very soon, serving out the remainder of her sentence. According to the NYTimes,

The city attorney’s office also asked that the sheriff’s department show why it should not be held in contempt of court for letting her go, or “reassigning” her, in the first place. “We cannot tolerate a two-tiered jail system where the rich and powerful receive special treatment,” said Mr. Delgadillo, the prosecutor who handled the case.

I presume Mr. Delgadillo's statement rings true to most of us, even if it exhibits a certain degree of descriptive naivete. And I suspect that one of the few things that may unite the contemporary right and left, liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans, may be the illegitimacy of Ms. Hilton's receiving special treatment,

But then, of course, we come to "Scooter," who is being supported for an immediate pardon by such denizens of law-and-order as the National Review, the Weekly Standard, and, of course, the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal (along with the New York Post, incidentally, so the takeover of the WSJ by Rupert Murdoch would create no dissonance on this issue). For the general lineup of anti- and pro-pardon editorials and articles, with hyperlinks), see Dan Froomkin's blog in the Washington Post.

The "moderate" position is being taken by William Otis, who wrote a Washington Post column suggesting a third way:

"Scooter Libby should not be pardoned. But his punishment -- 30 months in prison, two years' probation and a $250,000 fine -- is excessive. President Bush should commute the sentence by eliminating the jail term while preserving the fine. . . .

"To pardon Scooter Libby would not be consistent with the imperative that the mechanisms of law be able to demand, and receive, the truth. But to leave the sentence undisturbed would be an injustice to a person who, though guilty in this instance, is not what most people would, or should, think of as a criminal."


I'm not personally acquainted with Mr. Otis, described by Froomkin as a member of the Federalist Society and by the Post as a former federal prosecutor [who] was a member of the Attorney General's Advisory Committee on the Sentencing Guidelines under administrations of both parties. He was special counsel for President George H.W. Bush. At the very least, though, I'd be curious to know if he agreed with most members of what I presume is his political party that William Jefferson Clinton was guilty of a "high crime and misdemeanor" by his own playing fast and loose with the truth in a deposition and, arguably, before a federal grand jury. I suspect that whole lot of people thought that Clinton was "guilty" of something that "most people would, or should [not], think of as criminal." At that time, of course, I remember being treated to lots of lectures about the necessity to uphold the "rule of law" even against the highest official in the land, come what may. These were not in fact silly lectures. I have concluded, from the perspective of almost a decade later, that an honorable man would have resigned the presidency rather than forced his supporters to engage in the kind of legal casuistry that we were exposed to. (To be sure, my belief in this outcome is strengthened by the near certainty that we would thereby have been saved from the presidency of George W. Bush.)

"Scooter" may indeed be a fine, upstanding person, just as, for all I know, Paris Hilton is a real sweetheart if one gets to know her. But they are now strange (metaphorical) bedfellows in an important test of whether we continue even to pretend to believe in the notion of "equal justice under law." Stay tuned to your local cable outlets as we play out these national psychodramas.

[LATE BREAKING DEVLOPMENT: Ms. Hilton has been ordered back to jail.]



Comments:

Finally, a post about some interseting legal issues -- i.e., Paris Hilton. By the way, Prof. Levinson, the judge just sent her back to the hoosegow. She even cried "Mommy" on the way. Touching.
 

Um, that should have been "interesting," of course. Damn, bad spelling really spoils the snark.
 

Regarding Libby:

Howard Bashman over at How Appealing spots a fun little footnote from the US District Judge regarding the granting of the motion to fil amicus briefs regarding Libby's appeal here: http://howappealing.law.com/LibbyWaltonOrder060807.pdf

It appears that the Judge is, perhaps, a touch amused by the speed with which these legal "luminaries" are able to muster support.
 

If anyone missed it, Orin Kerr was all over this one, with bonus snark.
 

About time. I confess that I only prowl this blog seeking news about Paris Hilton, the hotel in Paris in which all sorts of strangers sleep.

Alas, such news is too damned rare.
 

Thankfully our country guarantees equality before the law. Next time I'm arrested and subjected to trial, I'll simply tell them I'd suffered enough by being arrested and charged, and the court will apologize and let me go with a bandage on my wrists where the handcuffs chaffed.

I can hear the judge now: "I'm so sorry you were inconvenienced, and victimized. Scoot along now."
 

@My Fellow Balkinites: Signing off for the weekend and Monday too. Anyone thinks I owe 'em a response is invited to say so at beau ( a t ) oblios-cap ( d o t ) com.

Y'all play nice now!
 

@My Fellow Balkinites: Signing off for the weekend and Monday too. Anyone thinks I owe 'em a response is invited to say so at beau ( a t ) oblios-cap ( d o t ) com.

Y'all play nice now!

# posted by Robert Link : 5:55 PM

Be tender.
 

I can hear the judge now: "I'm so sorry you were inconvenienced, and victimized. Scoot along now."

I assume you meant to type "Scooter along now."
 

can hear the judge now: "I'm so sorry you were inconvenienced, and victimized. Scoot along now."

I assume you meant to type "Scooter along now."

# posted by Mark Field : 7:14 PM

I wondered about that, so discussed it with Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. His analysis was so persuasive I was in the end compelled to concur with his view that that would have been too obvious.
 

There is plenty of hypocrisy to go around here. The GOP's current crocodile tears over Libby are simply an echo of the calls to move on by the left during the Clinton impeachment process. However, the richest hypocrisy is by those in the House and Senate who voted not to impeach or convict Mr. Clinton for far stronger cases of perjury but who cheer on Mr. Libby's conviction and sentence.

To me, perjury is perjury.

I did not think much of the case against Mr. Libby and, from juror interviews after the verdict, it appears that some of the jurors convicted Mr. Libby more for the unproven allegations of outing Ms. Plame liberally made by the government during the trial (and in a bit of malpractice actually used by the defense) rather than for the actual charges of perjury. However, Libby was convicted and should serve prison time.

The result in Mr. Libby's case does not so much show a miscarriage of justice for Mr. Libby as to illustrate how Mr. Clinton evaded justice.
 

"Bart" DePalma:

There is plenty of hypocrisy to go around here. The GOP's current crocodile tears over Libby are simply an echo of the calls to move on by the left during the Clinton impeachment process.

Clinton was tried and acquitted. In the words of Rehnquist, "Not guilty". It was the friggin' Republicans that wouldn't let the issue go (and still won't, it seems, seeing as "Bart" continues his long fascination with Clinton's penis.....).

Cheers,
 

"Bart" DePalma:

However, the richest hypocrisy is by those in the House and Senate who voted not to impeach or convict Mr. Clinton for far stronger cases of perjury but who cheer on Mr. Libby's conviction and sentence.

"Bart" disagrees with the
'jurors'. Fancy that. Kind of like the Republicans that didn't like Scooter's jurors either.

To me, perjury is perjury.

And lying inder oath (if that in fact happened) isn't. See 18 USC § 1621 et seq.

Cheers,
 

"Bart" DePalma:

[I]t appears that some of the jurors convicted Mr. Libby more for the unproven allegations of outing Ms. Plame liberally made by the government during the trial.

If they did such, that would be grounds for appeal. But "Bart"'s just spewing unsubstantiated horsesh*te here. Unlike the "Bart" namesake that said that assertions should be supported with cites.

Cheers,
 

arne:

The juror post conviction statements were widely reported, but here are some cites for the google impaired from ABC, CNN and Washington Post.
 

Arne Langsetmo said...

"Bart" DePalma: However, the richest hypocrisy is by those in the House and Senate who voted not to impeach or convict Mr. Clinton for far stronger cases of perjury but who cheer on Mr. Libby's conviction and sentence.

"Bart" disagrees with the 'jurors'.


It is good that you placed the word "jurors" in quotation marks when you are talking about the Senate. Calling the Senate a criminal jury of citizens when judging Clinton is like giving Gotti a jury made up his cappos.

And lying inder oath (if that in fact happened) isn't. See 18 USC § 1621 et seq.

I am glad you are admitting that Clinton in fact lied. You are half way to the truth.
 

I am glad you are admitting that Clinton in fact lied. You are half way to the truth.

# posted by Bart DePalma : 12:53 PM

Perjury is lying under oath. Clinton was charged -- impeached -- for having committed perjury. For lying under oath. Clinton was tried on that charge _AND ACQUITTED_.

And what did he allegedly -- he was acquitted -- lie about? Having a non-illegal consensual heterosexual affair with a female stalker.

What did "Scooter" lie about under oath -- perjury -- in order by that means to commit obstruction of justice? The clearly illegal outing of a covert CIA agent whose task was watching Iraq for illegal WMDs. That was not only the act of two or more anti-Saddam hypocrites -- who were at the time lying against Iraq on that very issue -- it was also an underminging of national security.

Sane adults readily recognize the dishonest distortions of proportion: Clinotn's non-illegal affair was not an attack on the rule of law, a levying of war against the system of laws that is the United States. Libby's et al.s blowing of the cover of a covert agent, and thus destruction of her efforts to track WMDs in relation to their falling into the hands of terrorists, was/is -- as said Daddy Bush -- treasonous.

To fake Republicans/conservatives such as "Bart" sex is treasonous; but undermining the national security of one's country, and thus risking the destruction of the country itself, is not.

Love it or leave it, "Bart".
 

The clearly illegal outing of a covert CIA agent whose task was watching Iraq for illegal WMDs.

You mean Iran and nuclear weapons.
 

"Bart" DePalma:


The juror post conviction statements were widely reported, but here are some cites for the google impaired from ABC, CNN and Washington Post.


You originally said: "[I]t appears that some of the jurors convicted Mr. Libby more for the unproven allegations of outing Ms. Plame liberally made by the government during the trial."

Don't see it, "Bart". You're hallucinating again.

OK, from the ABC site:

"The jury concluded that Libby had lied to FBI agents and a grand jury investigating who had leaked the identity of Valerie Plame, a formerly covert CIA officer.

"Jurors believed the prosecution's argument that Libby had lied to cover up a campaign by the White House to discredit former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, Plame's husband, who publicly had cast doubts on one of the administration's main reasons for going to war in Iraq."


They may have wanted more perps from the maladministration in the dock, but they convicted Libby for his lies, as they should have.

Cheers,
 

"Bart" DePalma:

[Arne]: "Bart" disagrees with the 'jurors'.

It is good that you placed the word "jurors" in quotation marks when you are talking about the Senate. Calling the Senate a criminal jury of citizens when judging Clinton is like giving Gotti a jury made up his cappos.


<*SHEESH*> "Bart", newsflash for you. The Senate is the jury in an impeachment (the House is the prosecution).

And I'd note, off the cuff, that one is afforded a jury of one's "peers" by the U.S. criminal justice system. One could reasonably argue that such should contain a representative number fo felons as well (but few would go so far as to say that all the jury must be criminals or criminal suspects)....

Cheers,
 

"Bart" DePalma:

And lying inder oath (if that in fact happened) isn't. See 18 USC § 1621 et seq.

I am glad you are admitting that Clinton in fact lied. You are half way to the truth.


I never admitted such. See the "(if that indeed happened)" above. nd then read it again. And again. Until you achieve fifth grade reading comprehension and can figure out what four simple words mean.

Cheers,
 

jnagarya:

Perjury is lying under oath....

About a material fact. See 18 USC § 1621 and the Kungys and Gaudin cases for more.

Cheers,
 

arne:

You are predictable in your obtuseness.

Perjury is an individual crime.

When multiple jurors were wondering why the Libby was the only one indicted and brought to trial by the Feds, they were not thinking of Libby's alleged perjury, but rather the "crime" repeatedly referred to during the trial, but neither charged nor proven, of "outing" Plame.

This raises the question of exactly of what did the Jury find Libby guilty?
 

Arne Langsetmo said...

<*SHEESH*> "Bart", newsflash for you. The Senate is the jury in an impeachment (the House is the prosecution).

And I'd note, off the cuff, that one is afforded a jury of one's "peers" by the U.S. criminal justice system.


Impeachment is not a criminal prosecution, it is a decision by the Congress about whether the President should be removed from office.

A half asleep prosecutor could have convicted Clinton of perjury in a criminal trial with a real jury of citizens.
 

Without having claimed to have researched the subject extensively, it is my impression that lying in a civil deposition, while technically a crime, is typically punished with civil penalties. Appropriate penalties would be dismissal (against the plaintiff) or default (against the defendant).

Given that even though the judge dismissed the case, Clinton ended up settling the appeal by agreeing to pay damages, I would say that he was appropriately punished.
 

el:

Perjury in a civil case is rarely prosecuted. However, instead of coming clean, Clinton perjured himself a second time in front of a criminal grand jury.

The fact that the judge eventually dismissed the Paula Jones sexual harassment civil claim is irrelevant to the perjury charge.

Perjury is a lie under oath on a material matter in the case. In the Jones claim, the plaintiff's attorneys anted to depose Clinton about his sexual relationships with his various female employees over the years. The Clinton attorneys objected but the Judge held that the plaintiff's attorneys could proceed because the subject was relevant to the claim. Thus, the court has effectively ruled that this subject matter was material to the case and you have your last element of perjury.

The fact that Jones was eventually found not to have an underlying claim does not matter any more than it did when Fitzgerald could not find an underlying crime against Libby.
 

Arne: And lying inder oath (if that in fact happened) isn't. See 18 USC § 1621 et seq.

BDP: I am glad you are admitting that Clinton in fact lied. You are half way to the truth.

Arne:I never admitted such. See the "(if that indeed happened)" above. nd then read it again. And again. Until you achieve fifth grade reading comprehension and can figure out what four simple words mean.

Four simple words? "if that in fact happened"? Why, that's five simple words! Which is it, Arne? Four or five? Was it "in fact" or "indeed"? Get your story straight!

This is the most damning evidence I've seen yet that the Libby prosecution was a sham.

In my opinion, the best thing to come out of the case so far is Judge Walton's footnote:

It is an impressive show of public service when twelve prominent and distinguished current and former law professors of well-respected schools are able to amass their collective wisdom in the course of only several days to provide their legal expertise to the Court on behalf of a criminal defendant.

The Court trusts that this is a reflection of these eminent academics' willingness in the future to step to the plate and provide like assistance in cases involving any of the numerous litigants, both in this Court and throughout the courts of our nation, who lack the financial means to fully and properly articulate the merits of their legal positions even in instances where failure to do so could result in monetary penalties, incarceration, or worse. The Court will certainly not hesitate to call for such assistance from these luminaries, as necessary in the interests of justice and equity, whenever similar questions arise in the cases that come before it.

 

"Bart" DePalma:

Perjury is an individual crime.

When multiple jurors were wondering why the Libby was the only one indicted and brought to trial by the Feds, they were not thinking of Libby's alleged perjury, but rather the "crime" repeatedly referred to during the trial, but neither charged nor proven, of "outing" Plame.


You have evidence that some "crime" was "repeatedly refered to during the trial" by Fitzgerald? IIRC, he purposely avoided such.

Yes, they wondered who else did what (and for good reason considering that viper's den of thugs and hacks in Cheney's orifice). But that hardly means they considered any other crime when deciding Scooter's guilt. They may have wanted another crime, but if anything they were frustrated that the crimes Scooter was charegd with were what they had. But AFAIK, that is what they decided, and they decided eminently according to the law and the evidence (there's no doubt Scooter was a lying sack'o'shite, and he's not repentant at all; his "I forgot" excuse is risible).

But you made the claim, "Bart". Give us a quote where they said they wanted to convict Libby for some other crime, but couldn't so they convicted him for the crimes that he was proven to have committed. The quotes in that article simply don't support your assertion; only your hallucinations.

You're a transparent parrot of the RW "talking points" and it does your image here (such as it is) no credit.

This raises the question of exactly of what did the Jury find Libby guilty?

Ummm, lying under oath and such. Four individual crimes whose elements were spelled out and explained multimple times, I'm sure.
 

"Bart" DePalma:

[Arne]: <*SHEESH*> "Bart", newsflash for you. The Senate is the jury in an impeachment (the House is the prosecution).

[Arne]: And I'd note, off the cuff, that one is afforded a jury of one's "peers" by the U.S. criminal justice system.

Impeachment is not a criminal prosecution, it is a decision by the Congress about whether the President should be removed from office.


True, but the effective "jury" is the Senate. You dispute their verdict. As read by Rehnquist (probably with a lum in his throat): "Not guilty". Sounds like a verdict to me.

A half asleep prosecutor could have convicted Clinton of perjury in a criminal trial with a real jury of citizens.

You couldn't try your way out of a paper bag with a bottle of kerosene and a Zippo.

As I've repeatedly noted, the Rethuglicans ignored the legal definitiion of perjury (and even Starr gave it short shrift), and kept referring to "lying under oath" and going on about the "damage" that lying does to the legal system and all that 'noble' crap. But as I've pointed out for nearly a decade, perjury is more than that, as per Kungys and Gaudin. You can't ignore all legal elements of a crime if you want to convict; any defence lawyer ("Bart" excepted, of course) would simply point out that one element (as prescribed by law) is missing and move for dismissal.

And Ray (and probably Starr before him) recognised this too. Look carefully at the articles of inpeachment. See how many times you can find "material" there.

Cheers,
 

Enlightened Layperson

Without having claimed to have researched the subject extensively, it is my impression that lying in a civil deposition, while technically a crime, is typically punished with civil penalties.

The punsishment if the jury thinks you lied is typically that the facts aren't found in your favour (they don't believe you), and that you lose the case.

Cheers,
 

The clearly illegal outing of a covert CIA agent whose task was watching Iraq for illegal WMDs.

You mean Iran and nuclear weapons.

# posted by Mark Field : 2:06 PM

Latest I read is that it was Iraq. But if it was Iran, as first reported, it's the same outcome: national security was undermined as concerns WMDs falling into the hands of terrorists by hypocrites who were claiming to be concerned with and opposed to terrorists getting WMDs.
 

"Bart" DePalma:

Perjury in a civil case is rarely prosecuted. However, instead of coming clean, Clinton perjured himself a second time in front of a criminal grand jury.

Prof by repeated assertion again. I'd point out that the ostensible reason for this grand jury (outside of Rethuglican witch-hunting) was to "investigate" whether Clinton perjured himself. If he didn't perjure himself, bootstrapping materiality this way is at the very least poor form:

Q: Is the moon made of blue cheese?

A: Of course, you scum-sucking putzheads. Now FOAD.

Later:

Q: Did you lie when you claimed the moon was made of blue cheese in a deposition? Keep in mind that we're conducting an investigation into whether you perjured yourself previously in a civil proceeding.

A: Of course I told them the moon is made of bllue cheese, you scum-sucking putzheads. Now FOAD.

Care to state the relevance here, "Bart"?

The fact that the judge eventually dismissed the Paula Jones sexual harassment civil claim is irrelevant to the perjury charge.

No. It goes straight to the issue of materiality.

Perjury is a lie under oath on a material matter in the case. In the Jones claim, the plaintiff's attorneys anted to depose Clinton about his sexual relationships with his various female employees over the years....

Yes, of course they did. They did this for extrajudicial ppurposes of embarrassment. Is such admissible? For those that actually have some legal acumen (or even a minimal understanding of written English), the answer is readily found in FRE Rules 413 and 415. Clinton's affair with Lewinsky was not a crime. See Rule 404(b) for why such a line of questioning in not permitted.

... The Clinton attorneys objected but the Judge held that the plaintiff's attorneys could proceed because the subject was relevant to the claim....

Nonsense. They claimed they could and would show how it would be relevant, and Wright demurred on Clinton's objection, saying she'd rule later. Bad move on Wright's part. She thought the Jones attorneys were honest lawyers rather than partisan hacks. She also thought that by sealing the evidence, she'd have control over it and could suppress anything found not admissible. She was wrong; the Jones lawyers dumped this stuff first chance they got, and should have earned a whopping contempt of court citation for it ... although that wouldn't have fazed them, small price to pay, and their motives were extrajudicial.

... Thus, the court has effectively ruled that this subject matter was material to the case ...

What a big steaming pile of manure. "Bart" hasn't a clue about materiality in perjury cases. The "court" doesn't get to "rule" that the "subject matter was material". See U.S. v. Gaudin. Not to mention, the articles of impeachment for the Lewinsky deposition didn't even pass the House.

... and you have your last element of perjury.

Well, if you're ignerrent of the law or intentionally misstating it....

The fact that Jones was eventually found not to have an underlying claim does not matter ...

Not quite so clear. According to the Kungys formulation, materiality derives from the facts at issue "be[ing] predictably capable of affecting, i.e., hav[ing] had a natural tendency to affect," the outcome of the case. By this standard, inadmissible evidence is (for all essential purposes) not material, seeing as it can't even come into court.

... any more than it did when Fitzgerald could not find an underlying crime against Libby.

In Libby's case, the information sought was directly relevant to whether a crime had been committed (and that we don't know, even, thanks to the maladministration's stonewallng and perjury). And Libby's crimes included lying to an FBI agent in the performance of their duties.

Cheers,
 

PMS_Chicago:

[Arne]:I never admitted such. See the "(if that indeed happened)" above. nd then read it again. And again. Until you achieve fifth grade reading comprehension and can figure out what four simple words mean.

Four simple words? "if that in fact happened"? Why, that's five simple words! Which is it, Arne? Four or five? Was it "in fact" or "indeed"? Get your story straight!


OMG. I'm sooooo embarrassed. Yes, you're right, I'm a moron. I'd plead lack of sleep, but methinks it was just haste. Mea culpa. Flog me 20 times with a limp lutefisk.

Cheers,
 

This comment has been removed by the author.
 

OBTW, another hurdle for a perjury conviction is that one relevant element is not that the fact asserted be false but rather that the deponent believe it to be false. (The three required elements of 18 USC § 1621 are 1) that the statement be under oath "before a competent tribunal, officer, or person", 2) that the statement is about a material fact, and 3) the person making the statement believes it to be false [does not believe it to be true]).

WRT the Clinton situation, a jury would have to find not that what Clinton said was not literally true (which is arguable), but rather, that under the circumstances and the actual questions given, Clinton believed he was actually stating a falsehood and not just giving weasel-word answers which were true but not particularly responsive. Clinton had no duty under 18 USC § 1621 to "tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth"; this obligation is television fiction (see the Bronston case). He may have thought he was skirting the truth without going over the line. His purported "admission" to Ray says that in fact, in retrospect he thinks he went over the line of factuality and that some of the things he said were false, but what matters for a perjury conviction is his beliefs at the time. One would have to prove this as an essential element beyond a reasonable doubt to get a perjury conviction.

Note that Fitzgerald and the Libby jury faced the same issue. The defence knew this, and, knowing that Libby's false statements could easily be proved to be false, they fell onto the "my memory has failed me" defence, not arguing that Libby thought that under some twisted interpretation of "tell" and "journalist" he thought he'd told the truth knowing what he'd actually done, but rather that he simply forgot what he had done. The jury didn't buy it (and for good reason).

On a different note, I'd mention the curious fact that in theory a perjury conviction can be achieved even if the fact stated is literally true. However, I am unaware of any case where such a conviction has occured. There was one case where, by any reasonable reading, the statement made was true, but the court finessed it by deciding that the true answer given was in fact a false answer to a different question which was not asked but which should have been asked (and upholding the conviction). The appeals court decided than both the questioner and the defendant had made a mistake about the time period at issue; the questioner asking about the wrong time period, and the defendant answering (falsely) as if the right question had been asked. I think this decision is wrong; I think that Bronston should control and that what matters is the actual question asked, not what should have been asked or what was intended to be asked. To ask a deponent to be a mind-reader in the face of incompetent questioning is a bit unfair ... you know, like asking Clinton to know WTF the Starr chamber was asking about when they said "Is there a sexual relationship....?" Clinton was kind enough to point out that the question was poorly phrased and was not likely what the questioners had intended (unless they were trying to bait him into some arguable "perjury" by leaving him some slack in the question). I'd point out hat the eedjitcy was not in the response "Depends on what the meaning of 'is' is", but rather in the verb tense of the question. Yet the Republicans, as always, tried to make out this response as being non-responsive. It wasn't. It was actually helpful to the questioners, while a truthful answer ("no" [not at the present time]) would not have been.

Cheers,
 

Back on topic:

Jeffrey -- I did read that footnote -- did you see Kmiec's sarcastic response?

Did anyone else find it strange that the rabid Bush haters on the left could only manage 26 letters to the Judge urging him to throw the book at Libby?
 

Here it is, Jeffrey:

"Judge Walton is right; we should be prepared to 'step up to the plate' to help criminal defendants nationwide," Kmiec said. "Boy, am I lucky to live in the same town as Paris Hilton."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/10/AR2007061000990.html?hpid=sec-politics
 

Charles:

Did anyone else find it strange that the rabid Bush haters on the left could only manage 26 letters to the Judge urging him to throw the book at Libby?

Did it ever occur to you that those people content to see the law aplied as intended didn't think it necessary to urge such a result on the court?

Cheers,
 

This comment has been removed by the author.
 

LATEST BREAKING DEVLOPMENT: Libby to begin serving sentence, regardless of appeal.

(Bush-haters around the Internet rejoice -- good thing Fitzgerald was never after Bill Clinton for his perjury to the grand jury and obstruction of justice -- just wait until the next Democrat gets in the White House for some serious payback ; )

Can we at least agree IF the conviction is completely overturned on appeal (I'm not referring to any Presidential Pardon -- although I see that even Obama's campaign attorney, Robert F. Bauer, has urged Bush to pardon Libby as well), then it would be wrong to have forced Libby to serve jail time? Where's Project Innocence when you need them?!
 

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