For Rove, not if but when
WASHINGTON, April 27 — Patrick J. Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor in the C.I.A. leak case, is expected to decide in the next two to three weeks whether to bring perjury charges against Karl Rove, the powerful adviser to President Bush, lawyers involved in the case said Thursday.
With the completion of Mr. Rove's fifth appearance before the grand jury on Wednesday, Mr. Fitzgerald is now believed to have assembled all of the facts necessary to determine whether to seek an indictment of Mr. Rove or drop the case.
Lawyers in the case said Mr. Fitzgerald would spend the coming days reviewing the transcript of Mr. Rove's three hours of testimony on Wednesday and weigh it against his previous statements to the grand jury as well as the testimony of others, including a sworn statement that Mr. Rove's lawyer gave to the prosecutor earlier this year. The lawyers were granted anonymity so they could speak about the internal legal deliberations in Mr. Rove's case.
A lawyer with knowledge of the case said that Mr. Rove had known for more than a month that he was likely to make another appearance before the grand jury, and that he had known since last fall that he would be subject to further questions from Mr. Fitzgerald before the prosecutor completed his inquiry.
Now, consider for a moment who this information came from. One thing we know with pretty good certitude is that it didn't come from anyone connected with Fitzgerald. His office has the reputation of being tighter than a drum. So, my bet is that this came from Rove's attorneys. And, the story now is quite a bit less rosey than it was two days ago when they were saying that Rove had just gone in to tie up some loose strings.
If this is the story from Rove's side, think about where the real truth must lie.
Stay tuned folks! We may have some firework displays coming soon.