Walton opened the hearing by noting the intense passions that surround the case. Since he imposed the sentence, the judge said, "I received a number of angry, harassing, mean-spirited phone calls and letters, some of those related to wishing bad things upon me and my family." Walton added: "Obviously, I find that very troubling. Those types of things cannot and will not have an impact on my decision."Here's how the NY Times put it:
For one thing, Judge Walton revealed that he had received threatening letters in recent weeks. At first he just discarded them, he said, but as they kept coming, he began collecting them and has turned them over to the authorities.How unsurprising. One of the worst side effects of the Bush administration's tenure, the trampling of respect for the impartial administration of justice rears its ugly head once again. Those issuing threats against the judge clearly won't be calmed by this:
After Walton's ruling, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said that "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."Got anything interesting you'd care to share about your boss, right about now, Mr. Libby?