Patrick Fitzgerald not really showing the “Justice” in “Justice Department.” His and his team’s conduct against Conrad Black wasn’t any great shakes either.
Unlike Holder, then-Attorney General John Ashcroft recused himself from the matter, and the investigation was handed over to Patrick Fitzgerald, a gung-ho prosecutor who served as U.S. attorney in Chicago. Fitzgerald was given all the powers of the Attorney General for the purposes of the investigation; he became, in effect, the Attorney General for Valerie Plame.
The results would have been comic had they not been so ugly. The world didn’t know it at the time, but Fitzgerald knew from the very start who the leaker was — it was a top State Department official named Richard Armitage, who seemed to have leaked Plame’s identity to Novak by simple carelessness. Choosing not to pursue Armitage, Fitzgerald instead spent years trying to find out if any other Bush officials had lied to investigators.
Fitzgerald paid particular attention to senior Bush aide Karl Rove, who just happened to be a top target of Democrats. The prosecutor called Rove before a grand jury on five separate occasions. Rove, who could have invoked his right not to testify, complied. Rove also turned over his Blackberries, his computers, and every scrap of paper he had produced during the time in question.