On Friday, President Donald Trump officially issued a pardon to Lewis "Scooter" Libby, a former Bush administration official who was convicted for his role in the outing of the identity of former CIA agent Valerie Plame. And unless you were politically active in the early-aughts, there's a pretty good chance his name doesn't ring familiar, so you might be curious for some details about him. For example, what is Scooter Libby's net worth, as best as it can be estimated?
The pardon was met with immense surprise in the mainstream media and on social media alike, given that it was largely without warning and Libby is a figure who hasn't been in the national consciousness for years. Following the announcement of the pardon, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway remarked that some people believed Libby to have been "the victim of a special counsel run amok," raising a not-so-subtle parallel to Trump's position on Special Counsel Robert Mueller's current investigation.
Whatever the reason for the pardon, however, Libby is now back in the national spotlight. As far as his net worth is concerned, it can be very difficult to assess just how much money and assets he has to his name, since such things aren't always a matter of the public record. Based on the careers he's held, and his involvement in the upper-echelon of American politics for years, he's definitely a well-off man.
In 2005, according to The Washington Post, his salary as Cheney's chief of staff totaled $161,000 per year. Given that he began the job in 2001 at the very start of the Bush administration, and didn't resign until late 2005 when his legal situation erupted, that means he netted nearly four years worth of salary ― in other words, he likely netted north of $500,000 for his time in the executive branch.
Libby was by no means a poor man prior to joining the administration, either. He had a successful law career prior to entering public life, and although his license to practice law was suspended following his convictions ― he avoided a 30-month jail sentence thanks to a commutation by former President George W. Bush ― it was restored in 2016.
So, just how much money does Libby have to his name? The best estimate is the one provided by the money in politics watchdog site OpenSecrets, which listed Libby's average net worth estimate in 2005 at $15,160,518.
Since leaving the administration, he's gone on to hold a high-ranking position at the Hudson Institute, a conservative think tank based out of the nation's capital. In short, it's realistic to suspect that his net worth has to some extent increased, rather than decreased, over the nearly 13 years since he departed from government work.
In short, while it make not be possible to state with 100 percent certainty how much money and what assets Libby has to his name, it's a safe bet that he remains a multi-millionaire, entirely financially privileged, and well-insulated from whatever hardships might come.
It remains to be seen whether Libby will be more visible in public life now that his 2005 convictions have been wiped clean. But, based on how reportedly wealthy he is, he could also quite easily and comfortably choose to keep things a bit lower-profile ― as low-profile as it gets when you're the vice president of a Washington, D.C. think tank, that is. Obviously, given that Trump just issued him a presidential pardon, his license to practice law has been restored, and he's seemingly got plenty of money in the bank, it's safe to say that Friday was a pretty good day for him.