Rove Meets Prosecutor in Firings Probe; No Details on Investigation of U.S. Attorney Dismissals

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), May 16, 2009 | Go to article overview

Rove Meets Prosecutor in Firings Probe; No Details on Investigation of U.S. Attorney Dismissals


Byline: Ben Conery, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Former Bush adviser Karl Rove met for nearly four hours Friday with a special prosecutor investigating the 2006 firings of several U.S. attorneys, but both sides were closemouthed about the discussion.

The meeting was held at the D.C. offices of Mr. Rove's lawyer, Robert Luskin. Mr. Luskin also declined to comment on the details of his client's meeting with special prosecutor Nora Dannehy, saying only: Mr. Rove has consistently stated that he would cooperate fully and voluntarily with Miss Dannehy's investigation.

After the meeting, Rebecca Carr, a spokeswoman for Mr. Luskin, said the interview went well.

A jovial Mr. Rove joked with reporters before driving away in a Jaguar. He didn't respond to questions about the meeting and instead reminded reporters that he was to appear Saturday morning on television.

Miss Dannehy left the law office without speaking. Tom Carson, a spokesman for Miss Dannehy, also declined comment.

The acting U.S. attorney in Connecticut, Miss Dannehy is investigating whether the Justice Department, White House or congressional officials broke any laws as part of the firings of nine U.S. attorneys. The firings led to the resignations of several top Justice Department officials, including former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales.

Former Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey appointed Miss Dannehy to investigate based on recommendations from a scathing 2008 internal Justice Department report that concluded political consideration improperly played a role in the dismissals of several U.S. attorneys.

The report stopped short of concluding that any crimes had occurred but recommended the appointment of a prosecutor to determine whether offenses such as wire fraud or obstruction of justice had taken place.

U.S. attorneys are presidential appointees who can be removed for almost any reason at any time. But the internal investigation concluded that they cannot be removed as a way of influencing a case or an election. According to the Justice Department Inspector General's office, that could be a criminal offense.

The internal report concluded that Mr. Rove - along with Monica Goodling, former White House liaison for the Justice Department; former White House official Harriet Miers; and former Sen. …

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