Crew Sues DOJ for Failing to Provide Records of VP’s Interview in Plame Leak Investigation
On August 25, 2008, CREW sued the Department of Justice for failing to provide records of Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald's interview with Vice President Richard Cheney stemming from the investigation into the leak of Valerie Plame Wilson's covert identity as a CIA officer.
For over a year the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has been seeking documents from DOJ related to the leak of Ms. Wilson's covert identity. While some records have been provided, DOJ has refused to provide the committee with access to records related to the vice president's interviews, despite the fact that the interviews were not grand jury material and the Office of Special Counsel had made no promises to the vice president regarding their use.
When the committee subpoenaed the records, Attorney General Michael Mukasey asked President Bush to assert executive privilege over the records and on July 17, 2008, the committee announced that the president had done so, blocking DOJ from providing them. CREW then sent a Freedom of Information Act request to DOJ for the interview records, requesting that they be processed on an expedited basis due to public interest in the matter. Though it agreed to expedition, the Department has failed to provide CREW with any records or identify a date by which processing would be complete. As a result, CREW filed suit in federal court alleging violations of the Freedom of Information Act. The matter has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Emmett Sullivan.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is a non-profit legal watchdog group dedicated to holding public officials accountable for their actions. For more information, please visit www.citizensforethics.org or contact Stephen Santulli at 202.408.5565 or firstname.lastname@example.org.