A federal judge said Thursday he will not delay a 2 1/2-year prison sentence for I. Lewis ”Scooter” Libby, a ruling that could send the former White House aide to prison within weeks.
U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton’s decision will send Libby’s attorneys rushing to an appeals court to block the sentence and could force President Bush to consider calls from Libby’s supporters to pardon the former aide.
No date was set for Libby to report to prison but it’s expected to be within six to eight weeks. That will be left up to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons, which will also select a facility.
UPDATE: Firedoglake has more details.
UPDATE II: AP reports that Libby’s lawyers “will seek an emergency order delaying the sentence.”
UPDATE III: Response from White House Deputy Press Secretary Dana Perino:
Scooter Libby still has the right to appeal, and therefore the president will continue not to intervene in the judicial process. The president feels terribly for Scooter, his wife and their young children, and all that they’re going through.