"Karl Rove appeared today before the grand jury investigating the disclosure of a CIA agent's identity. He testified voluntarily and unconditionally at the request of the Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald to explore a matter raised since Mr Rove's last appearance in October 2005," Rove attorney Bob Luskin said in a statement.
"In connection with this appearance, the special counsel has advised Mr. Rove that he is not a target of the investigation. Mr. Fitzgerald has affirmed that he has made no decision concerning charges," Luskin said.
A source familiar with the case told FOX News that Rove was "cleaning up cats and dogs," meaning he was discussing left over details of the case rather than new issues. Rove has testified before and was under investigation by a previous grand jury.
Special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald convened the grand jury early Wednesday, and Rove around 12:30 p.m. EDT, and the testimony was still ongoing at 4:00 p.m. It is only the second session the prosecutor has had with this new grand jury, according to reports. The panel last met on Dec. 7.
The new grand jury was empanelled to look at questions left unanswered in the Plame affair, and follows an earlier grand jury that expired on Oct. 28, the day it handed up an indictment against Vice President Dick Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby. Libby goes on trial next January for five counts of perjury, obstruction of justice and lying to the FBI. However, he has not been charged with illegally identifying Plame to the media.
Plame's identity was exposed eight days after her husband, Bush administration critic and former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson, alleged that the U.S. government had manipulated prewar intelligence to exaggerate an Iraqi nuclear threat. Wilson has acknowledged that he leaked classified information about the case to the press because he wanted to hold the administration accountable, but he has never been charged with any crime.
Rove testified to the first grand jury that he discussed Plame to Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper on July 11, 2003. But he says he forgot he had the conversation, which occurred several days before Plame's identity was revealed by syndicated columnist Bob Novak. Rove and Novak also had discussed the CIA status of Wilson's wife.
Rove's troubles stem from the fact that he didn't tell Fitzgerald about the Plame conversation with Cooper until a year after the criminal investigation began. One issue left unresolved for Fitzgerald is that Time reporter Viveca Novak was the one who reminded Luskin that Rove and Cooper spoke.
Luskin then searched documents to find a memo he sent to then-Deputy National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley outlining the conversation, which began with the topic of welfare reform. Rove's lawyer then produced the memo for Fitzgerald and the grand jury. In the view of the defense, handing over the document showed that Rove had nothing to hide and that remains the position of Rove's defense, a source told FOX News.
At the White House, Press Secretary Scott McClellan said he had nothing to discuss about Rove's testimony.
"I have no new information on that matter and even if I did have information I wouldn't be in a position to share it with you, as you know," McClellan told reporters.
But Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who was among the first to call for the leak probe, said the additional visit from Rove shows that the investigation is far from over.
"While obviously no one knows what goes on in the grand jury, the fact that Karl Rove has been called back once again is ominous," Schumer said.
Another piece of unfinished business in the probe focuses on the source who provided Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward information about Plame. Woodward says his source, who he has not publicly identified, provided the information about Wilson's wife, several weeks before Bob Novak learned of Plame's identity. The Post reporter, who never wrote a story, was interviewed by Fitzgerald late last year.
FOX News' Jim Angle and The Associated Press contributed to this report.