Monday, May 09, 2005

CIA Agent Plame & The Supreme Court

An Update on the Investigation Into the Leak Of CIA Agent Plame's Identity:
Will The Supreme Court Take The Miller And Cooper Cases?
Friday, Apr. 22, 2005

The investigation relating to the improper (if not felonious) revelation of Valerie Plame's CIA identity by syndicated news columnist Robert Novak seems to be heading toward its conclusion. (I have previously written about the investigation in columns of January 6, 2004 and January 30, 2004.)

The investigation has been marked by some surprising developments. The latest twist relates to two reporters: New York Times investigative reporter Judith Miller, and Time magazine White House correspondent Matthew Cooper.

The two appear to be peripheral players at best, but appearances may be deceiving: According to Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald, Miller and Cooper are essential to his completing his investigation.

Playing hardball, Fitzgerald has insisted both Miller and Cooper be found in contempt of court for their refusal to reveal their confidential sources to his grand jury. So far, courts have ruled in his favor. The question now is whether the U.S. Supreme Court will take the case, and if it does, what it will rule.

A Brief Recap Of The Situation

On October 7, 2004, the Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Thomas Hogan, held Miller in contempt. Then, on October 13, Judge Hogan held Cooper in contempt. Judge Hogan ordered each to pay a fine of $1,000 per day and to stay in jail until he or she testifies. However, he stayed his order pending their appeals....