PA Alumus Scooter Libby ’68 Indicted by Federal Court for Perjury, Other Crimes

Vice-President Dick Cheney’s former Chief of Staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby ’68, resigned last week after being indicted on five charges related to the Congressional probe regarding the leak of CIA officer Valerie Plame’s identity in 2003. Mr. Libby attended Andover from 1965 to 1968. He was President of the Philomathean Society, Vice-President of the Andover Democratic Party and Andover Student Political Union, as well as a Phillipian board member and WPAA contributor. Mr. Libby graduated cum laude in 1968. Mr. Libby grew up in Connecticut and then went to the Eaglebrook School in Deerfield, Massachusetts, before attending Andover and then Yale University. At Yale, Mr. Libby was Vice-President of the Student Democrats and a supporter of anti-Vietnam presidential candidates Eugene McCarthy and Robert Kennedy. As quoted in The Boston Globe, Jackson Hogen ’68, a classmate of Mr. Libby at both Andover and Yale, said that Mr. Libby strived to be “so opaque you can’t tell he is there” when it came to his behind-the-scenes role in student government. Although he does not share Mr. Libby’s political beliefs, Mr. Hogen admires the man with whom he shared a room during their freshmen year at Yale. According to the Las Vegas Sun, Mr. Hogen called his friend “fun and witty and engaging. If you can leave ideology aside, he’s a fun guy to talk to.” Mr. Hogen told the Las Vegas Sun, “I’m sure making himself the issue was never his intention. He certainly wasn’t looking forward to fifteen minutes of fame.” He told the Sun, “I don’t think you get to serve as the Vice-President’s Chief of Staff by having your name pulled out of a hat. Scooter is a complete professional. He does his job every day to the best of his ability….My impression was if they think they’re going to pin something on Scooter, they’d better have a sharp set of tacks. He’s very unlikely to walk into a noose, especially of his own fashioning. I don’t think [prosecutor] Fitzgerald has enough to hang an indictment on him, but I could be wrong.” The indictment alleges that Mr. Libby lied to FBI agents when he testified that he learned of Ms. Plame’s identity from NBC News’ Tim Russert. If he is found guilty on all counts, Mr. Libby will face up to 30 years in prison, along with $1.25 million in fines. As reported by CNN, Federal Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald alleged that Mr. Libby “was at the beginning of the chain of phone calls—the first official to disclose this information outside the government to a reporter—and then he lied about it afterwards, under oath and repeatedly.” After Mr. Wilson wrote an op-ed article in The New York Times criticizing the credibility of intelligence cited by the Bush Administration as justification for the war in Iraq, his wife’s identity as a CIA officer was revealed. The role of President Bush’s top political adviser Karl Rove in the matter is still being investigated. As reported by CNN, Nevada Democrat and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said, “[These charges] suggest a senior White House aide put politics ahead of our national security and the rule of law.” According to CNN, President George W. Bush ’64 commented that Mr. Libby “has sacrificed much in his service to this country,” and added “in our system each individual is presumed innocent and entitled to due process.” Vice-President Cheney said in a statement to CNN that Mr. Libby is “one of the most capable and talented individuals [he] has ever known.”