If he were really in control, then his fervent request to have Lewis (Scooter) Libby pardoned would have been fulfilled. But, according to a New York Daily News article, Bush refused that request right up to the end of his presidency, and Cheney was "furious" about it.
Libby was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in the inquiry into the infamous leak of CIA spy Valerie Plame's identity. Bush commuted Libby's 30-month sentence, but that apparently wasn't enough for the vice president.
Former Bush White House adviser Karl Rove refuted the claims and said the argument was "overblown" in the media.
"I know that he felt strongly about this," Rove said on NBC's "Today" show. "But I think the tabloids tend to get these things overblown. [Cheney and former President George W. Bush] are two very close men who have a long and enduring relationship that is good and positive."
Rove said the relationship between Cheney and Bush wasn't compromised by Bush's decision not to pardon Libby.
"It's obvious Dick Cheney feels strongly about it," Rove said. "But the president laid out his commutation of Scooter Libby and the grounds on which he was making his decision."
But sources close to the veep told the Daily News that Cheney wouldn't let the issue go.
"He went to the mat and came back and back and back at Bush," a Cheney defender told the newspaper. "He was still trying the day before Obama was sworn in."
But "W" didn't budge, and that made the vice president mad, the News' sources said.
"[Cheney's] furious with Bush," one source told The News. "He's really angry about it and decided he's going to say what he believes."
Cheney did throw the former president under bus, so to speak, after Obama took over the White House. He told The Weekly Standard that"[Libby] was the victim of a serious miscarriage of justice, and I strongly believe that he deserved a presidential pardon," Cheney said. "Obviously, I disagree with President Bush's decision."
Cheney was often referred to as the most powerful vice president in history. But in the waning days of the Bush administration, Cheney lost a lot of sway with the president.
"It's been a long, long time since I've heard the President say, 'Run that by the vice president's office.' You used to hear that all the time," said one of the sources who spoke with the newspaper.