28 October 2005

if this isn't an indictment, i don't know what is

(A brief history of White House indictments)

1. On 28 October 2005, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, assistant to President Bush Minor and chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, was indicted on five charges including obstruction of justice, making false statements and perjury in the investigation into the leak of a covert cia agent’s name, a violation of the espionage act. The grand jury which handed down the indictment has been hearing the case since 2003. Special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald and his investigators have been trying to determine whether Libby or any other administration officials knowingly revealed the identity of cia agent Valerie Plame or lied about their involvement to investigators. More indictments may be forthcoming.

2. In october 2005, David H. Safavian, the top procurement official for President Bush Minor, resigned. Three days later, he was arrested and indicted on five felony counts connected to criminal investigation of lobbyist Jack Abramoff. At the time the indictment covered, from May 2002 to January 2004, Safavian had been serving as the chief of staff at the general services administration. The case is still pending.

3. In November 1996, Henry G. Cisneros resigned from his position as President Clinton's Housing Secretary. In December 1997, he was indicted on 18 counts of conspiracy, obstruction and lying to the FBI. Cisneros pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in 1999 and was fined $10,000.

4. In December 1994, Mike Espy resigned from his position as Clinton's Agriculture Secretary. In August 1997, Espy was indicted on 39 corruption counts in allegations that he had received financial gifts from Tyson Foods Inc., one of the companies his department regulated.

5. In May 1993, White House Travel Office chief Billy R. Dale and his entire staff were fired by the Clinton administration. Dale was indicted in december 1994 on two counts of embezzlement and conversion after a grand jury said he pocketed up to $68,000 from media organizations traveling with the president.

6. The only sitting cabinet member in recent history to be indicted while in office was Raymond J. Donovan, President Reagan's labor secretary. In September 1984, Donovan was indicted along with several others, accused of grand larceny in his co-ownership of a construction firm. After going on unpaid leave in october, Donovan resigned in March 1985.

7-19. In November 1986, John M. Poindexter resigned from his post as National Security Adviser to President Reagan. In March 1988, Poindexter was indicted in relation to the Iran-Contra affair. Poindexter was charged with two additional counts of obstructing congress and two counts of making false statements. He was convicted in 1990, but the charges were overturned the following year. Also indicted: Elliott Abrams, Carl R. Channell, Duane R. Clarridge, Thomas G. Clines, Alan D. Fiers, Jr., Clair E. George, Albert Hakim, Robert C. McFarlane, Richard R. Miller, Lt. Col. Oliver North, Richard v. Secord, and Caspar W. Weinberger. On December 24, 1992, President Bush Major pardoned Abrams, Clarridge, Fiers Jr., George, McFarlane, and Weinberger. North's conviction was vacated because of a technical conflict in the immunity agreement between north and the Judiciary Committee in exchange for his testimony.

20. In 1983, Thomas C. Reed resigned from the Reagan administration after working as a presidential assistant under National Security Adviser William P. Clark. In August 1984, he was indicted on four counts related to alleged illegal stock trading.

21-29. In April 1973, President Nixon forced White House Chief of Staff H.R. Haldeman and Domestic Affairs Counsel John Ehrlichman to resign. In March 1974, they were indicted in connection with the Watergate coverup. Along with several others, both Haldeman and Ehrlichman were convicted in 1975 and sentenced to 18 months in prison. Others indicted in the Watergate affair were E. Howard Hunt and G. Gordon Liddy, and the Watergate burglars James W. McCord, Frank Sturgis, Bernard Barker, Eugenio Martinez and Virgilio Gonzalez (a.k.a "The Plumbers").

The score:
Republicans - 26 (and counting)
Democrats - 3

You'd think the Republicans would learn. I guess the phrase "memory of an elephant" doesn't apply.

sources: federation of american scientists, intelligence resource program and the center for media and democracy

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