For two years, a federal prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald, has been investigating the leak of Plame's identity as an undercover CIA agent. The leak was first reported by columnist Robert Novak on July 14, 2003. Novak apparently made some arrangement with the prosecutor, but Fitzgerald continued to press other reporters for their sources, possibly to show a pattern (to prove intent) or to make a perjury case. (It is illegal to knowingly identify an undercover CIA officer.) Rove's words on the Plame case have always been carefully chosen. "I didn't know her name. I didn't leak her name," Rove told CNN last year when asked if he had anything to do with the Plame leak. Rove has never publicly acknowledged talking to any reporter about former ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife. But last week, his lawyer, Robert Luskin, confirmed to NEWSWEEK that Rove did—and that Rove was the secret source who, at the request of both Cooper's lawyer and the prosecutor, gave Cooper permission to testify.
AmericaBlog raises a good point: Bush said he wanted to "get to the bottom of this" ages ago. Amazingly enough, though Bush and Rove seem about as close as fingers on the same hand, little bottom has been reached thus far.
Why then did we have to waste all this money on a special prosecutor and a grand jury if Rove knew from day one that he was the guy who leaked Plame's identity? If Rove was so innocent, why didn't he just come forward immediately and say "yeah, it was me, but I didn't realize she was undercover"? Did he tell the president it was him? And if so, why didn't the president go public and put this investigation to an end? Or did Rove refuse the president's request and NOT come forward a year ago? And if so, what is he still doing working in the white House? [Emphasis added.]