March 10, 2010
Rove on the Crazy Witch Hunt of Patrick Fitzgerald
In his new book, Karl Rove shows how bizarre the witch hunt against him and Scooter Libby was. Remember this when you think of how Patrick Fitzgerald ruined Libby and almost destroyed Rove:
After the October grand jury testimony, Fitzgerald called Rove's lawyer, Robert Luskin, and said they were leaning towards an indictment, Rove wrote. Luskin arranged to fly to Chicago to talk with Fitzgerald about the case and urged the prosecutor to consult with others in the Justice Department. In particular, Luskin recommended Fitzgerald talk to David Margolis, the DOJ's highest-ranking career official and a 45-year veteran of the department. Fitzgerald eventually decided against contacting Margolis, Rove wrote, but agreed to bring in two other lawyers in the Chicago U.S. attorney's office who had previously been uninvolved with the case to re-examine his thinking.In an epic five-hour meeting, Luskin and Fitzgerald hashed out the various aspects of the case against the White House adviser. At the meeting, Fitzgerald said he was bothered by Rove's non-recollection of the conversation with Cooper. If Rove did not remember the conversation with Cooper, Fitzgerald asked, why did he ask his aides in January 2004 to go through his phone records and notes to find any evidence of contact with Cooper? Luskin had the surprising answer, Rove wrote. The lawyer had learned from a friend who worked at Time that Cooper told colleagues he had spoken with Rove about Plame. Luskin then asked Rove to find any records that might confirm the conversation took place."Luskin's revelation stunned Fitzgerald," Rove wrote. "‘You rocked my world,' Fitzgerald told Luskin. The special prosecutor's intention going into the meeting had been to indict me. Now he didn't know what he would do."Days later, Fitzgerald called Luskin to say he would not indict Rove. When his lawyer called with the news, Rove said he was both relieved and angry."I had made four grand jury appearances, seen my wife and son subjected to countless hours of abuse and fear, depleted my family's savings to pay hundreds of thousands in legal fees, and worried endlessly about what might happen," Rove wrote. "I had faced the prospect of indictment because Patrick Fitzgerald wondered why I'd asked my staff to comb my records to see if I'd talked to Matt Cooper. ... The news of what he had been focused on simply confirmed my view that the special prosecutor was looking for a trophy."