March 15th, 2009
05:22 PM ET
5 years ago

Cheney: Not happy we 'left Scooter sort of hanging'

Photo Credit: Josh Rubin/CNN.
Photo Credit: Josh Rubin/CNN.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Former Vice President Dick Cheney told CNN Sunday that former President George W. Bush should have pardoned former side I. Scooter "Lewis" Libby, and that he was unhappy his former chief of staff had been left "sort of hanging in the wind."

Bush had turned down Cheney's request for a Libby pardon. "Well, it was - it was one of the moments that occurred in the administration where we had fundamental difference of opinion," Cheney told John King on State of the Union. "I believe firmly that Scooter was unjustly accused and prosecuted and deserved a pardon, and the president disagreed with that."

King asked whether any of the discussions had been angry or tense ones, or involved shouting. "Those kinds of details, I think, are best left to history," replied Cheney. "Maybe I'll write about it in my book."

Cheney is writing an as-yet untitled memoir about his four decades in Washington.

He told King he and the president had spoken by phone three times in the past few weeks, and that the two men had "built a very solid, lasting relationship" - although he remained unhappy with Bush's decision on Libby. "I was clearly not happy that we, in effect, left Scooter sort of hanging in the wind, which I didn't think was appropriate. I think he's an innocent man who deserves a pardon," he said.

Cheney also defended Rush Limbaugh from charges by some conservative commentators that the radio host was electoral "kryptonite."

"Rush is a good friend. I love him," Cheney told King. "I think he does great work and has for years. He's now offered to debate President Obama on his radio show. Hell, I'd pay to see that! It would be interesting to have developed. I think Rush is a good man and serves a very important purpose."

Filed under: Dick Cheney • State of the Union
soundoff (360 Responses)
  1. Mickey, New York

    While we are on the topic of hanging, just when is the public execution by The Reflecting Pool in Washington of the Bush Cabal war criminals? I'd like to know...I'll be the one selling popcorn, cotton candy, and would be a good way to stimulate the economy in these lean times.

    March 15, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  2. Realist

    I was PO'd when I saw this story. I was ready to dash off a heated comment but I see that all you brilliant posters have beat me to it.

    Nothing to add here.

    Make Cheney a street cleaner in Iraq.

    March 15, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  3. ralph

    At least Cheney pays his taxes.

    March 15, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  4. Bill

    Yea.... too bad, so sad.

    Scooter broke the law and I'm pretty sure Cheney broke a few himself.

    March 15, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  5. Northwest

    Libby was just one of the crooks go look in a mirror Dicky Cheney and you will be looking at another that belong behind the bars.
    Round them up and send them all where they belong to/in prison.

    March 15, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  6. daunt

    Cheney is just plain self serving. "MONEY MONEY POWER.

    March 15, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  7. PV

    He can rant about Scooter all he wants.

    What did he do to Valerie Plame?
    He's completely forgotten about that hafl of the equation.
    Why aren't they both in jail?
    Because Scooter perjured himself.

    Scott in Tucson: our current VP is not a sociopath...

    March 15, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  8. ralph

    Want someone in jail, try Barney and Maxine. They put us in this mess.

    March 15, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  9. sick n tired of being a victim of Nazi CNN moderators

    What? Left him hanging? I thought ole Scooter did a fine job of taking the fall for you and Bush like a good little puppet! Plus he got his sentence commuted what more do you want?

    March 15, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  10. Erik V.

    "Cheney is writing an as-yet untitled memoir about his four decades in Washington."

    And if he's talking about the truthful part of those 4 decades, all of that should fit nicely into a thin pamphlet.

    March 15, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  11. pat C.

    this jerk does not deserve all this air space. he is a war criminal and should have been put in jail along time ago.

    March 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  12. andrew

    Shame on CNN for evening giving this man the microphone. Cheney is only newsworthy if he is being indicted for war crimes, and the crimes against humanity that he and bush committed.

    This "State of the Union" program is obviously fishing for ratings. Not that it matters, but they've lost my viewership in the process. If I wanted to see criminals on TV, I'd watch TruTV.

    March 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  13. Tom

    Cheney 2012! Maybe he can pick Palin as VP.

    That would be very entertaining.

    March 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  14. Steve from TN

    The US Justice Dept. needs to go after the bushies if they can summon the guts. President Obama should let JUSTICE be done. This idea to forgive and forget is BS. Otherwise they must accept the guilt of their complicity in a plan to criminalize the entire federal gov.

    March 15, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  15. bill

    Cheney -go away.

    You know we spent a lot of $ to make the infamous GITMO into the maxi-prison of our generation. Now Obama wants to close it and let the "terrorists" out. What to do with the jail ? How about putting Bush, Cheney, Scooter, Powell, Rice and the ever-popular Rove there until the economy, world relations, Iraq, illegal immigration, and all the screw ups of these fools are repaired. Should be around the next milinium.

    March 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  16. billy-bayou

    I just took the quick poll, the Question.... do you agree with Cheney that the obana policies put america in danger of terrorist attacks?

    71% say no.....

    When the next attacks start happening, I can hear the obama bunch now.....Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield and Rove...They did this.

    I have come to the point that I believe that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield and Rove caused the great depression and were instrumental in the crusifiction.

    March 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  17. jb

    Cheney should be tried in The Hague. The damage he did to our country is unspeakable and will take generations to undo.

    March 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  18. Realist

    Oh and Maria...... I agree.

    Since we are in this God forsaken war, I think Chuck Norris should be tried for treason.

    March 15, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  19. John Mahoney

    It was Mr. Cheney who put Scooter out to "hang in the wind". His memory is very selective.

    March 15, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  20. Dinah

    Dear Ralph,
    I am going to ralph.

    March 15, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  21. RD

    Cheney knows for fact that Libby was unjustly accused. The problem is that Cheney is no man enough to admit that it was really himself that should be taking the brunt.

    March 15, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  22. Linda

    Dickhead, being mentally challenged, believes all Reslug crooks and criminals should be pardoned, but not the Dem's that the lying Rethugs set up for prosecution.

    March 15, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  23. abraxis

    Wow! Comparing paying taxes with committing crimes against humanity and making decisions that caused the lost of 4,000 plus American lives is not only engaging stupid talk but is engaging in stupid action, Forrest!

    March 15, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  24. Ken

    Sure we left him hanging,
    But not on the gallows.

    March 15, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  25. john pinter

    cheny is a joke ! He should be in jail with scooter. cnn should never give this man another micr second of tv time.

    March 15, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
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