Saturday, January 24, 2009

Pardon? Question that put rift in special partnership.

The Guardian are reporting that Bush and Cheney had a falling out before they left office over Bush's refusal to grant a pardon to "Scooter" Libby.

In an interview, Cheney admitted the two had a row before they left the White House for the last time, Bush to Texas and Cheney to his home state of Wyoming.

Bush, who reportedly seldom stood up to his powerful vice-president, ignored a plea by Cheney to grant a last-minute pardon to a former senior White House staffer. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, who had been Cheney's chief of staff, was found guilty of abusing his power in a row over a CIA leak.

Cheney told the Weekly Standard, published this week: "Scooter Libby is one of the most capable and honourable men I've ever known. He's been an outstanding public servant throughout his career. He was the victim of a serious miscarriage of justice, and I strongly believe that he deserved a presidential pardon."

In words he would never have uttered in public while in office, he added: "Obviously, I disagree with President Bush."

It was a rare falling out. Cheney said that in eight years of partnership he had clashed with Bush only five times. As well as the pardon, the two disagreed about the sacking of the defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who had been a protege of Cheney. They also split over North Korea, the lifting of a ban on handguns in Washington and gay rights - Cheney's daughter is a lesbian.

"Scooter" Libby was never a victim. And there was certainly never any serious miscarriage of justice in his case.

He was found guilty of perjury, by a jury of his peers, the exact same crime that the Republicans attempted to impeach Bil Clinton for committing.

Because of "Scooter" Libby's lies, Patrick Fitzgerald found it impossible to reach a conclusion in the case of who outed Valerie Plame from her covert status as a CIA agent.

So Libby was no victim, he was a foot soldier in Cheney's war to stop the truth from ever being revealed regarding how far he was willing to go to silence dissent about the Iraq war and the lies which had been told to enable it. Indeed, that is the very language which some Libby supporters are employing:

Mr Bush's decision not to pardon Libby has angered many of his staunchest supporters defenders, who have used word like "disgusting" and dishonourable" about the Texan. One suggested it was like leaving a soldier on the battlefield.

So, for all Obama's talk during the election about the need to be bipartisan, he would do well to remember that a large part of the Republican party regard this as a war.

Cheney is furious, despite the fact that Libby never served a second in jail for his crime. Because Cheney believes that no crime was ever committed. After all, all is fair in love and war, and Cheney - and his ilk - see this as a war.

It would appear that even the puppet couldn't go along with his master's reading on this one, but that mindset is a real indication of the forces which Obama is up against.

These are not reasonable people, they are vicious ideologues who see themselves as engaged in a cultural war.

Click title for full article.

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