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

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

[cnn-photo-caption image=
caption="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. Charles

    Scooter Libby was left hanging - says Dick Cheney!!!

    Bull hockey!! Scooter Libby took a fall for Cheney and is a convicted felon because of it. He deserves nothing except a prison cell with a subsistence of food and a swallow or two of water every oncve in a while. He deserves no television or golf course or law library or any contact with the outside world which he obviously did not intend to follow the rules and laws thereof.

    Cheny is a lowlife criminal who someday could face charges, various charges, on Iraq and other things. The lies and distortions and cases of destryoing peoples' lives will eventually come out when Cheney's Mafia-like control of people lessens to the right degree.

    Cheney is not news. He's a criminalistic mind living in America where he has little to no place in society. He fits more appropriately in the thug days of the 1920s and 1930s, and he's a outdated dinosaur with no social standing or worthy opinion.

    Cheney's comment about leaving Scoot hanging in the wind... the only probloem with that is the wind should also be blowing on Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, and Bush. Cheney and Bush are the kinds of people that make me sorry to tell foreign friends that I live in America because they judge decent Americans by such scum and trash.

    March 15, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  2. Adrian Veidt

    Dick Cheney is a war criminal who belongs in prison for the rest of his life.

    March 15, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  3. chuck

    The reason the FORMER vice president wanted his buddy Scooter pardoned is because he knew it was himself, who had thrown his buddy Scooter under the bus!!!!!! "Lets pardon my friend because I AM THE REAL GUILTY ONE"!!!!!!!


    Only "you" think your opinion matters any more.

    March 15, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  4. Out of work

    What about the other non-famous defendants who are convicted of obstruction of justice? Should they receive pardons too? Most defendants would have no chance at the sweetheart clemency deal Libby got because of his White House connections. Cheney was also guilty of illegality but was not prosecuted. No one is going to buy Dick's book unless you enjoy paying for a pack of lies.

    March 15, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  5. Chris

    Libby was unfairly prosecuted...
    Should have been Cheney being arrested instead of him.

    March 15, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. Chuck G

    WHY would anyone listen to this person! He's the one that said we would be welcomed as conquerors. He's the one who said Iraq had WMD. He's the one who said the war would pay for itself. I find it incredible that this person still has the medias attention. ANYTHING he says is self-serving.

    March 15, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  7. Henry

    How do this type on interviews work out? Do you call Cheney and ask him? Or does he call you asking to be interviewed?
    In either case it sounds like a waste.. This person is without remorse and probably the most hated individual in this Country and probably the world as well.

    March 15, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  8. JR

    Didn't John King learn anything about the media/journalism/integrity last week? CNN and King should be ashamed of this "interview" – we deserve better.

    March 15, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  9. Lennon for president

    there's a good reason he wasn't pardoned HE WAS A CRIMINAL HE DID DESERVE IT...Mr. Cheney and Mr. Rove are a hundred times more guilty and yet they're still free...the should all be locked away FOREVER!

    March 15, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  10. JR

    Scooter "Lewis" Libby, "is a liar and a thief just like him .....

    March 15, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  11. Tracy

    In response to your comments Mr. Cheney – you left America hanging.

    March 15, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  12. Texrat

    Hey "Conservative" complainer... I would have loved to see your "conservative" comments. Surely you didn't defend anyone's crimes or malfeasance, seeing as how conservatives are supposedly pro law enforcement. Right? Surely you think Libby, Bush, Cheney and others should pay for their wrongdoings. Right?

    March 15, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  13. Jenn, Philadelphia

    I'm sure that everyone who is calling for the former president and vice-president to be hung are national security experts and have seen all the security reports that prove they lied. At the time, the UN, the CIA, the administration and the US Congress believed Iraq had WMD and Hussein himself said he had them. Maybe they should have called all of you (monday morning quarterbacks) first, then we wouldn't have started the war in the first place. And have any of you noticed, a lot of these so called "crimes against the Constitution" you're complaining about have not been reversed by your beloved Messiah. He has continued them and it's because he's now privy to all the information he didn't have when he was criticizing them.

    March 15, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  14. wayne

    Dick Cheney belongs in jail...America needs to go back to the time when we would tar and feather these guys..and ride them out of town on a rail..

    shame on ANY "news" organization who gives this minion of the devil a platform to spew it's venom..

    March 15, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  15. Aaron Valentino

    As ever, the people who accuse the former president (for whom I did not vote in the last election) of a lack of intellectual curiosity, display an ignorance of the facts and the news. Libby was not charged with, nor convicted of, leaking Valerie Plame's name. The person responsible—Richard Armitage—was a critic of the Bush Administration, and was never charged with any crime.

    To everyone leaving the "burn in hell" and "despicable excuse for a human being" comments, I again offer the same criticism: you lament the previous Administration's inability to consider ideas other than their own with name-calling and hate. You affirm the belief that liberals are tolerant, as long as one agrees with their belief.

    March 15, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. John

    Free Scooter!!! Most of you liberal media followers will be forgotten in about 30 seconds....

    March 15, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  17. Steve T, Seattle WA

    CNN, why do you even give this evil, destroyer of life the air time? It is counter-productive to getting this country back on track. I cannot think a less politically relevant person in the history of the US...except maybe Dan Quayle. It is very clear that the only person that Dick Cheney cares about is himself and his own political ambitions. Why do you give him a platform to disrupt this country? This is not is a rant from evil incarnate.

    March 15, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  18. george in buffalo

    One point that has been neglected on Cheney's efforts to pardon Libby is that the obvious reason that Libby leaked the information was because Cheney is the one who told him to leak the information.

    March 15, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  19. Paul

    What an AMAZING display of arrogance, Mr Cheney! The only thing keeping you, boy George, Scooter, and the rest of the gang out of jail is a lack of guts by the Obama administration to take your previous regime to task for innumerable violations of the law. Why don't you just go to Dubai with your Halliburton thieves and take your Milton Friedman school of rich get richer global economics with you? I'm sure all the rich folk in Dubai would be a more receptive audience.

    In the current situation, we need your views like we need a lobotomy.

    March 15, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  20. Jay

    George Bush was right to refuse to pardon Libby. And by the way, Chaney is irrelevant. Why is he even on CNN? This is a dangerously thinking person, and if he was in power, we'd be in trouble. Thank God,he is gone, along with those right wing crackpots!

    March 15, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  21. Marge

    Well who was responsible for scooter to be in that position in the first place...cheney cheney cheney.

    March 15, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  22. Crook!!!

    You are a crook. I pray every day for this country. You will give account to God for your role in the turmoil this nation is in. How could you show your face when you see people living in tents that have worked all of their adult lives. People's homes that were worth 700,000 are now being sold for 20, 000. This is a moral outrage. I hope no republican runs this country again. I love my President Obama and I know that he will work to get this country out of this mess. Now you want to speak for Mr. Libby, you are a crook and a phoney. No one will forget the fact you belong in prison.

    March 15, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  23. gino

    This whine from a war criminal who conspired to undermine the constitution and violate basic human rights. He has disgraced himself and this great country.

    March 15, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  24. JT in Fla

    The reason Darth Cheney is so worried about Scotter Libby getting a pardon is because Cheney fears that Libby will realize hes' been had.! Cheney is afraid Libby will expose him for the war criminal that he is. ! Both Cheney and Bush belong in prison.

    March 15, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  25. Flo

    What he meant to say is if I'm not prosecuted for my crimes I don't see why scooter can't get a pardon, afterall I've asked him to be the fall guy for me. Cheney is real loyal to his crooked friends as they are to him and he can't get over the promise he made to scooter for taking the fall. I bet he blew his cap when Bush refused to go along to get along. Funny how that works..................

    March 15, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
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