Scooter Libby, Bush official, pardoned by Trump for obstruction of justice

Saul Loeb  AFP via Getty Images

Saul Loeb AFP via Getty Images

As Cheney's top aide, he had played a central role in a Bush White House campaign to smear Joseph Wilson III, a former U.S. Ambassador and critic of the Iraq invasion, by leaking the identity of his wife Valerie Plame Wilson, a heroic CIA covert operative working to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders, at a briefing with reporters, said the pardon had absolutely nothing to do with with rsquo & Trump;s views about Mueller's evaluation.

Speaking of Trump's decision to pardon Libby - who was convicted of lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and obstruction of justice related to the outing of Plame's identity - former Ambassador Joe Wilson absolutely tore into the president. Whatever Trump does or doesn't know about Libby, however, someone must have told him why the Bush administration's former vice presidential chief of staff ended his career with multiple felony convictions and narrowly escaped prison. In 2007, Libby was convicted of four felony counts of perjury relating to an investigation into the unauthorized disclosure to the press of the identity of a Central Intelligence Agency officer, Valerie Plame.

The prosecutor in Libby's case was Patrick Fitzgerald, a long-time friend of former FBI Director James Comey. Fitzgerald is a longtime friend and colleague of James Comey, the fired Federal Bureau of Investigation director whose new memoir paints a scathing portrait of Trump's character and conduct in office.

The news was first reported by ABC News.

In a statement, the president said he doesn't know Scooter Libby, but heard for years that he had been mistreated. Hopefully, this full pardon may definitely help a part of his entire life. Then-President George Bush commuted Libby's 30-month sentence, sparing him prison time, but didn't pardon him.

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A spokesman for Bush said the former president was "very pleased" for Libby and his family. The next year, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals unanimously reinstated Mr. Libby to the bar, reauthorizing him to practice law.

Still others view it as an ominous sign as indictments continue to grow in Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation. In fact, Trump should issue even more of them.

Before Libby's pardon, today, Plame questioned Mr. Trump's motivations.

In all, eight witnesses, many of them high-ranking members of the Bush administration, contradicted Libby's testimony. Some speculate that this pardon is an attempt by the Trump administration to discredit Comey and his investigational direction.

Trump's pardon may send another message - that he is willing to use his pardon power to reward loyalists and to punish prosecutors he sees as running amok. He granted one past year for former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was awaiting sentencing for contempt of court. His record since his conviction is similarly unblemished, and he continues to be held in high regard by his colleagues and peers.

Trump has termed Mueller's probe a "rdquo & witch search; and Russian Federation and also he have denied any wrongdoing".

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