The Los Angeles Times puts together a must-read on the latest signals coming from the Fitzgerald investigation showing increased attention to Karl Rove. The paper Notes that the special prosecutor "may be considering indictments that some have viewed as too difficult to pursue, including prosecution under a federal law that makes it a felony to reveal the name of a covert agent." LINK
"Special Prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald also dispatched FBI agents this week to the CIA officer's neighborhood in Washington, asking neighbors whether they had been aware — before her name appeared in a syndicated column — that the operative, Valerie Plame, worked for the CIA."
According to one neighbor who is clearly well-schooled in the investigation:
"'They really only had one interest, and that was to know whether Valerie's identity, on what she did for a living, was known prior to the Novak article. It seemed they were trying to establish clearly that prior to the Novak article she was not widely known on the cocktail circuit… And I pointed out, we were good friends, we socialized with them, and we just had no idea' until her status was made public in the Novak column. . ."
And don't miss the reporting from Italy buried at the bottom of the story.
The Wall Street Journal's McKinnon and Squeo lean towards the Notion that the leak probe is focused on the Office of the Vice President and not on Rove. "if Mr. Rove isn't charged, it would be a relief for the White House and Republicans -- though one significantly tempered if several White House officials are indicted."
The Wall Street Journal duo Note that even if the grand jury votes on indictments today, Fitzgerald could "file them under seal until later in the week."
"One remaining mystery is who provided Ms. Plame's name to Robert Novak, whose column revealed the former operative's identity."
In the newish category, the Journal reports: "While Mr. Novak has declined to say whether he talked to the special prosecutor, an attorney involved in the case confirmed that the columnist had discussed the source of that information. Mr. Novak's attorney declined to comment."
The Washington Post's VandeHei and Leonnig report that the decision on the part of FBI agents as recently as Monday night to interview at least two people in Valerie Plame's neighborhood is a "possible sign that Fitzgerald may seek to charge one more mode officials with illegally disclosing Valerie Plame's CIA affiliation." LINK
And be sure to Note their reporting on the length of time Fitzgerald has had Libby's Notes on the June 12, 2003 Libby/Cheney colloquy.
The New York Times reports that Fitzgerald continued to seek information yesterday on whether Karl Rove "had been fully forthcoming about his contacts" with journalists in July 2003. LINK
"The flurry of last minute activity had White House officials anticipating an announcement as soon as Wednesday about whether the prosecutor would seek indictments. Indictments of Mr. Libby or Mr. Rove or both would leave Mr. Bush a political crisis with the potential to reshape the remainder of his second term."