For Immediate Release
Mar 5, 2001
Contact: Press Office


(Washington, DC) In this week’s edition of Newsweek, award winning investigative reporters Mark Hosenball and Michael Isikoff, report that the Bush White House is attempting to derail Congressional probes of Pardongate. See Below is the text of Newsweek’s press release from this Sunday, March 4.

NEW YORK, March 4 /PRNewswire/ -- White House administration officials are quietly pressuring GOP Congressional investigators to end the probe of former President Bill Clinton's pardons as quickly as possible, Newsweek reports in the current issue. "Everybody's not real happy with us over there," says one Republican staffer. `I've been getting calls from the White House saying, 'Hey, what are you guys doing?' "

After three days of hearings that seemed to raise more questions than answers – last week Democratic fund raiser Beth Dozoretz pleaded the fifth amendment when called to testify -- even some of the staunchest anti-Clinton Republicans are beginning to think they may be wasting their time. ``This is a dead end," an aide close to Rep. Dan Burton, the Indiana Republican leading the pardons investigation, tells Newsweek.

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The Newsweek story itself reads:

In private, Bush White House officials worry about a political backlash from Democrats if the pardon investigation drags on much longer. For more than 10 years, Rich’s chief American lawyer and advocate was Lewis (Scooter) Libby, now Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff. Last week Democrats on the Burton committee fired a political warning shot, insisting that Libby, who worked for Rich until last year, be called as a witness. Libby acknowledged that his law firm had collected $2 million in fees from Rich, and that he had continued to consult with Rich’s current lawyers as recently as last November. Even more damaging, Libby admitted that two days after the pardon, he called Rich in Switzerland to congratulate him. The revelation delighted Democrats, who have been dying to inflict a little political pain themselves. Now some Republicans are having second thoughts. “A lot of our members are starting to ask, ‘Do we really want to push this?’” says one GOP staffer.

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