Says he learned Valerie's name from Joe Wilson's entry in 'Who's Who in America'
Chicago Sun-Times columnist Robert Novak said today he has been told the CIA leak investigation, as it relates to him, is over and he can reveal his role -- including testifying before a grand jury.
In his syndicated column to be released Wednesday, Novak said special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has long known Novak's three sources for his July 14, 2003, column that outed Valerie Plame as a CIA agent. The column came after Plame's husband, Joseph Wilson, accused the Bush administration of twisting intelligence on Iraq.
Novak still does not name his "primary source" for the column, but does confirm that presidential aide Karl Rove and CIA public information officer Bill Harlow were also sources for the column.
Novak's column begins by noting "Fitzgerald has informed my attorneys that, after two and one-half years, his investigation of the CIA leak case concerning matters directly relating to me has been concluded. That frees me to reveal my role in the federal inquiry that, at the request of Fitzgerald, I have kept secret."
Fitzgerald spokesman Randall Samborn declined to comment on Novak's column. Fitzgerald has been investigating whether any laws were broken when Plame's identity was revealed.
Novak said he revealed Rove as a source because Rove's lawyer has previously disclosed details of their conversation. However, Novak's recollection of that conversation differs.
Novak revealed Harlow's name because Harlow also has previously discussed their conversation publicly. Novak also writes that he remembers their conversation differently.
He's mum on the third source because that person has not come forward publicly.
Fitzgerald's knowledge of the three sources' identities was not learned from Novak, the columnist writes, adding the special prosecutor from Chicago had in his possession signed waivers from all three before he questioned Novak.
Novak said he was questioned twice by Fitzgerald at the offices of Novak's lawyers. Novak also writes he was subpoenaed and testified before a federal grand jury, but he disputed claims that he cut a deal with prosecutors, invoked his Fifth Amendment rights or was ever a target of the probe.
Novak said he first interviewed his primary source before seeking out Rove and Harlow for confirmation. Novak said he learned Plame's name from her husband's entry in Who's Who in America.
Rove testified before a grand jury five times. He was told last month that he will not be indicted in the case.