Uh-oh. Time for Karl Rove to start sweating again?

[T]he Office of Special Counsel is preparing to jump into one of the most sensitive and potentially explosive issues in Washington, launching a broad investigation into key elements of the White House political operations that for more than six years have been headed by chief strategist Karl Rove.

The new investigation, which will examine the firing of at least one U.S. attorney, missing White House e-mails, and White House efforts to keep presidential appointees attuned to Republican political priorities, could create a substantial new problem for the Bush White House....

"We will take the evidence where it leads us," Scott J. Bloch, head of the Office of Special Counsel and a presidential appointee, said in an interview Monday. "We will not leave any stone unturned."

It looks like the OSC plans to focus on the White House's use of RNC email accounts to conduct government business, as well as Rove's briefings to federal appointees on political priorities--potential no-nos under the Hatch Act. It's not a criminal investigation, but an OSC prosecution could lead to Rove getting fired. If they catch him, that is.

--Bradford Plumer