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I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby hired two white-collar high-flyers in Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison’s Theodore Wells Jr. and Baker Botts’ William Jeffress Jr. to help him beat criminal perjury charges, but every beauty contest must have its runners-up. In the case of the former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, according to a number of knowledgeable sources, at least four other D.C. lawyers were interviewed in person by Libby. Among the finalists: W. Neil Eggleston of Debevoise & Plimpton, Zuckerman Spaeder’s tandem of William Taylor III and Francis Carter, and E. Lawrence Barcella Jr. of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker. All are veteran D.C. insiders. Eggleston did much of the heavy legal lifting in the Clinton White House’s effort to beat back Kenneth Starr’s investigation; Carter was the man Clinton adviser Vernon Jordan dialed when Monica Lewinsky first came looking for a lawyer; Taylor repped former Clinton Chief of Staff Thomas “Mack” McLarty; and Barcella represented former Reagan-era Navy Secretary Melvyn Paisley. But losing out in the Libby sweepstakes could yet prove a boon; the remaining lawyers are thus available for an even bigger pageant should Patton Boggs’ Robert Luskin fail in his bid to ward off an indictment of White House adviser Karl Rove, or if anyone else in the case is charged.
Jason McLure can be contacted at [email protected].

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