We’ve posted a copy of Joseph and Valerie Wilson’s suit against Karl Rove, Scooter Libby and VP Cheney here, but here are the basic details.
As the suit reads, it “arises out of a conspiracy among current and former high-level officials in the White House and actions taken by and on behalf of those officials in 2003 to violate the constitutional and other legal rights” of Valerie and Joseph Wilson.
Because of the administration’s “whispering campaign” against the Wilsons, they say that they’ve suffered “gross invasions of privacy,” that they “fear of their safety and for the safety of their children,” that Valerie Wilson’s career was ended, and that both of them “have been impaired in pursuing professional opportunities.”
The Wilsons don’t specify what damages they’re seeking.
The complaint details eight causes of action, all surrounding the trio’s involvement in outing Valerie Wilson as a CIA agent:1) Violation of First Amendment Right to Freedom of Speech – because the First Amendment “prohibits government officials from subjecting any individual to retaliatory action in reprisal for the exercise of the right to speech.”
2) Violation of Fifth Amendment Right to Equal Protection of the Laws – because the Equal Protection Clause of the Fifth Amendment “prohibits government officials from intentionally subjecting any individual to treatment that is different from that accorded to others similarly situated and is without legitimate basis.” In other words, they singled the Wilsons out for a smear job.
3) Violation of Fifth Amendment Right to Privacy – because the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment “prohibits government officials from violating any individual’s right to privacy by publicly disclosing personal information.”
4) Violation of Fifth Amendment Right to Property – because the Due Process Clause “prohibits government officials from depriving any individual of a property interest in employment without due process.”
5) Conspiracy to Deprive Persons of Their Civil Rights – because Rove, Cheney and Libby conspired to deprive the Wilsons of their civil rights (as described in 1-4).
6) Action for Neglect to Prevent Civil Rights Violation – because Rove, Cheney, and Libby could have stopped the smearing of the Wilsons, but didn’t, and then lied to investigators and the federal grand jury about their role in the leak.
7) Public Disclosure of Private Facts – because “The Defendants caused widespread publication of a private fact… in a manner that would be deemed outrageous and highly offensive to a reasonable person of ordinary sensibilites.”
8) Civil Conspiracy.