In a statement explaining Trump's action, the White House noted that in 2015 one of the key witnesses against Libby recanted her testimony, among other factors. He came under investigation in 2003, after speculation that he leaked the identity of a secret Central Intelligence Agency operative Valerie Plame, to newspaper reporters.
The pardon was the third for Trump.
He said that he and his family are grateful and that they have "suffered under the weight of a bad injustice". So far, Mueller hasn't charged anyone with colluding with Russian Federation.
PM Narendra Modi Congratulates ISRO On IRNSS-1I Satellite Launch
ISRO successfully puts IRNSS-1I in orbit to replace IRNSS-1A after its onboard atomic clocks stopped functioning. He lauded the team for working tirelessly to make the PSLV-C41/IRNSS-1I a success after a major GSLV mission.
In a statement, the president said he doesn't know Scooter Libby, but heard for years that he had been mistreated.
The ink on the pardon was barely dry, however, when critics began saying that President Trump had pardoned Libby to signal to those facing charges in Robert Mueller's Russian Federation probe that he will pardon them, too, if they are convicted. In a twist, the special counsel in Libby's case, Patrick Fitzgerald, was appointed by James Comey, deputy attorney general at the time. The person, who wasn't authorised to discuss the decision ahead of its public announcement and demanded anonymity, said the pardon has been under consideration at the White House for months. Asked if a pardon would be about Mr Comey, Ms Conway said no.
White House adviser Kellyanne Conway earlier on Friday said: "Many people think that Scooter Libby was the victim of a special counsel gone amok". "To his great credit, President Trump recognized this wrong and would not let it persist". "Scooter" Lewis Libby is likely to reverberate through Washington, coming as Mr. Trump complains about an overzealous investigation against him. "It's very clear that this is a message he is sending that you can commit crimes against national security and you will be pardoned". "It would also mean he was forgiving a former official who was convicted in a case involving leaks despite Mr. Trump's repeated inveighing against those who disclose information to reporters", the New York Times stated. War critics were outraged and demanded that a special prosecutor investigate the leak. Cheney was angered by Bush's decision, telling the president that he had left a soldier on the battlefield in the wake of the partisan investigation of the leak of Central Intelligence Agency operative Valarie Plame's name publicly to the media.
In August, Trump pardoned Joe Arpaio just weeks after a federal judge found the former Maricopa County, Ariz., sheriff guilty of ignoring a court order to stop racial profiling in immigration enforcement.