Rich Galen

Whoa! Check please! Fitzgerald was hired to find out who had leaked Valerie Plame's name to Bob Novak, right?

It turns out that as early as 2003, Fitzgerald knew who had leaked the name but asked the leaker not to tell anyone he was the leaker so he could indict someone in the leak case who was not the leaker?

What, one wonders, did Fitz-whatever threaten Armitage with if Armitage hadn't "honored his request?"

Judith Miller of the New York Times went to jail for refusing to divulge her source (it was Libby). Matt Cooper of Time Magazine was about to go to jail for refusing to divulge his source (it was Rove).

But neither Libby nor Rove was the original source. It was Armitage.

When the story first broke it was reported that Cooper said to Rove that Plame worked at the CIA and that Rove had responded with something like, "Yeah, I heard that, too."

In Washington, you never admit you don't know something. You say, "Yeah, I heard that too."

Fitzgerald chose not to indict Armitage because there was no crime. He tried like the devil to indict Rove but Rove convinced the grand jury that he made or took hundreds of phone calls a day and failing to remember one call with one reporter several years earlier was not a crime  it was astonishingly normal.

People who know Scooter Libby (and I am not one of them) say that he is a decent guy. A smart guy. And a patriot.

In the kind of painful ironies which abound in Washington the lawyer who represented Marc Rich in his pardon plea to President Clinton was Scooter Libby.

President Bush should return the favor. Pardon Libby.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at