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Virginia Gov. Restores Scooter Libby's Voting Rights

Former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby in 2007.
Chip Somodevilla
Getty Images
Former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby in 2007.

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has restored the voting rights of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby.

If you remember Libby was former Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff. As the AP explains, "he was convicted in 2007 of perjury, obstruction of justice and making false statements in a case involving leaked information that compromised the covert identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame. Libby's 2½-year prison sentence was commuted by then-President George W. Bush."

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported yesterday that the Republican governor included Libby's name in a list of 1,000 felons whose rights he restored in 2012.

The paper reports that McDonnell had expressed an interest in the "automatic restoration of civil rights for nonviolent felons during his annual State of the Commonwealth address but the state legislature defeated efforts to change the Virginia Constitution"

"The governor has established the quickest and fairest restoration of rights process in Virginia history," McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin told the paper. "He believes in second chances and redemption, and those basic beliefs drive this administration's work on the issue."

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Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.