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Bush Wants To Know Who Leaked Name Of CIA Agent

Bush Wants To Know Who Leaked Name Of CIA Agent

In the question-and-answer period with reporters October 7, President Bush was asked how confident he is that the ongoing Justice Department investigation will be able to discover the senior administration official who leaked the name of a CIA undercover agent to reporters.

Bush responded: "[Y]ou tell me, how many sources have you had that's leaked information that you've exposed or have been exposed? Probably none."

Washington "is a town full of people who like to leak information," Bush said. "And I don't know if we're going to find out the senior administration official. Now, this is a large administration, and there's a lot of senior officials. I don't have any idea. I'd like to.

"I want to know the truth. That's why I've instructed this staff of mine to cooperate fully with the investigators -- full disclosure, everything we know, the investigators will find out. I have no idea whether we'll find out who the leaker is -- partially because, in all due respect to your profession, you do a very good job of protecting the leakers. But we'll find out."

Later, White House Press Secretary McClellan said President Bush "has made it very clear that the leaking of classified information is a serious matter, and he takes it very seriously. That's why he is saying that we need to get to the bottom of this, and the sooner the better."

McClellan also said he himself had spoken with three senior members of the White House team -- Scooter Libby, Vice President Cheney's chief of staff; Karl Rove, the president's political adviser; and National Security Council member Elliott Abrams -- about the leak, and all told him they were not the leakers.


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