WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Bush has blocked the release of Vice President Dick Cheney's interview with investigators probing the leak of a CIA agent's identity, invoking executive privilege Wednesday to keep that document and others under wraps.
Bush asserted the privilege claim at the request of Attorney General Michael Mukasey, who has been under pressure from a congressional committee to turn over the transcript of Cheney's interview, White House spokesman Tony Fratto said. Mukasey argued that releasing the transcript would discourage
future witnesses from being questioned outside grand jury proceedings.
The records stem from the investigation into the 2003 exposure of CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson, whose husband had accused the Bush administration of twisting the intelligence used to justify the invasion of Iraq. Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, was convicted of obstructing justice and perjury in connection with the disclosure, but was not charged with leaking her name.