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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 14, 2005

Schumer Urges Bush To Name White House Leak Source

Yesterday in a speech in North Carolina, columnist Robert Novak said that he is 'confident the President knows who the source is,' referring to the leaking of Valerie Plame's identity to reporters. The link to the news story on Novak's speech is: http://www.newsobserver.com/722/story/377675.html

Today, Senator Chuck Schumer sent a letter to President Bush urging him to name the source of the White House official who leaked a covert CIA operative's identity to the press, including columnist Robert Novak, who said yesterday that the President knows who the source is. Schumer was the first to call for an independent investigation into this serious breach of national security after Mr. Novak's column ran. He has repeatedly called on the White House to get to the bottom of this issue.

Below is Schumer's letter:

December 14, 2005

The Honorable George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

I write to urge you to share with the American people the identity of columnist Robert Novak’s sources in the Valerie Plame affair, if you know them. Despite a continuing investigation by Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, we still do not know who Robert Novak’s sources were for his July 14, 2003 column, in which Ms. Plame was identified as working for the CIA.

Yesterday, during an address in Raleigh North Carolina, Mr. Novak reportedly said that he is “confident the president knows who the source is.” Given Mr. Novak’s comment that you may now know the identity of the source of the leak, you are in a position to clear this matter up quickly. Also, unlike Mr. Novak, who can claim an interest in maintaining the confidentiality of his sources, there is no similar privilege arguably preventing you from sharing such information.

You have repeatedly suggested that you would like to get to the bottom of this affair. At one point, in 2004, you suggested that anyone who was involved in leaking the name of the covert CIA operative would be fired. Therefore, in keeping with your stated desire to root out leaks, I urge you to share with the American people whatever knowledge you have about which “senior administration officials” were responsible for disclosing Ms. Plame’s identity as a CIA operative.

If you do have such knowledge, I ask that you share what you did with that information, including whether you have disclosed it to Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald in order to advance his investigation. Moreover, the public deserves to know what disciplinary actions, if any, were taken with respect to those sources, who were described as “administration officials.”

Alternatively, I urge you to make clear that you do not know the identity of source of the leak.

I – along with the American people – look forward to hearing you clarify the record on this important issue.

Respectfully,

Charles E. Schumer

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