WASHINGTON – President Bush's former spokesman, Scott McClellan, will testify before a House committee next week about whether Vice President Dick Cheney ordered him to make misleading public statements about the leaking of CIA agent Valerie Plame's identity.
McClellan will testify publicly and under oath before the House Judiciary Committee on June 20 about the White House's role in the leak and its response, his attorneys, Michael and Jane Tigar, said on Monday.
In his new book, "What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception," McClellan said he was misled by others, possibly including Cheney, about the role of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby in the leak. McClellan has said publicly that Bush and Cheney "directed me to go out there and exonerate Scooter Libby."
The statements prompted House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., to invite McClellan to the hearing "concerning reported attempts to cover up the involvement of White House officials in the leak of" Plame's identity.
Plame's CIA identity was leaked to the news media by several top Bush administration officials in 2003, including Libby and former top White House political adviser Karl Rove. Last July, Bush commuted Libby's 2 1/2-year sentence, sparing him from serving any prison time after being convicted of perjury, obstructing justice and lying to the FBI.
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, D-Calif., also is seeking more FBI documents about the leak in part because of McClellan's description of the way he was instructed to respond to questions on the matter.
At Libby's trial, witnesses testified that Cheney, Libby and other Bush administration officials mounted a campaign to counter criticism of the Iraq war by Plame's husband, Joseph Wilson. Cheney's spokeswoman, Cathie Martin, testified that Cheney personally wrote out statements and talking points for Libby and other aides to give to reporters to rebut Wilson's allegations.