The commutation of Libby's sentence was the perfect move in the chess game being played out to delay the inevitable surfacing of truth until after January 20, 2009. Why?
1. Libby spends none of the 30 month sentence behind bars...thereby avoiding the certain personal discomfort that might make him rethink his blind loyalty to "the bosses."
2. A wrinkle in the law that says you can't serve probation unless you've been behind bars will allow Libby to avoid the probation portion of the sentence thereby allowing him to simply fork over $250,400 in fines.
3. Libby can be called before congressional hearings but can maintain protection of the 5th amendment as long as the appeal of his conviction is being considered. CRITICAL POINT: A PARDON WOULD HAVE REMOVED THE PROTECTION AGAINST SELF INCRIMINATION AND FORCED LIBBY TO REVEAL ALL HE KNOWS TO CONGRESS
4. Bush gets to claim respect for the jury verdict and at the same time rest easy at night in the knowledge that as long as the appeal of Libby's conviction continues in the appeals courts, he and his administration can sit in silence under the cover of "the ongoing legal process."
If you don't know a little Latin, Google "quid pro quo." It's the only thing that can explain why such a brilliant, high power legal team such as Libby's would roll over and play dead during such a high stakes trial.
There is alot to be said about hypocrisy on both sides of the political spectrum over this issue. Bill Clinton needs to keep his mouth shut on this issue...whoops...too late. Suffice it to say that there is mud everywhere and it's long past time to start shoveling it out and hosing it off.