Jeopardy: Now that Judith Miller is out of jail and has testified before the grand jury convened by specical counsel Patrick Fitzgerald to look into the Bush CIA Leak matter, a new prediction about the outcome of the leak investigation has been floated:
[A] new theory about Fitzgerald’s aim has emerged in recent weeks from two lawyers who have had extensive conversations with the prosecutor while representing witnesses in the case. They surmise that Fitzgerald is considering whether he can bring charges of a criminal conspiracy perpetrated by a group of senior Bush administration officials. Under this legal tactic, Fitzgerald would attempt to establish that at least two or more officials agreed to take affirmative steps to discredit and retaliate against Wilson and leak sensitive government information about his wife. To prove a criminal conspiracy, the actions need not have been criminal, but conspirators must have had a criminal purpose.
The “two or more officials” would probably include the Administration’s domestic president Karl Rove and Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief advisor Scooter Libby. We would toss former White House spokesman Ari Fleischer into the pot as well.
Or, on the other hand, Fitzgerald could conclude the investigation and do — nothing:
“Even assuming . . . that somebody decided to answer back a critic, that is politics, not criminal behavior,” said one lawyer in the case. This lawyer said the most benign outcome would be Fitzgerald announcing that he completed a thorough investigation, concluded no crime was committed and would not issue a report.