Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Blood in the Water

Democrats and the MSM have been hyperventilating over the past few days over the revelation that Karl Rove told Time reporter Matt Cooper that Joseph Wilson's wife (without specifically naming her) and not CIA Director George Tenet or VP Dick Cheney authorized Joseph Wilson's trip to Niger.

While this revelation along with evidence that Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame was not a covert agent would suggest that Rove did not violate the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, the MSM senses a potential scandal, as they barraged White House Spokesman Scott McClellan yesterday with 35 some questions on Karl Rove in a terse 35 minute Q & A session.

One of the major themes in the questions was whether President Bush would uphold his pledge to fire those responsible for outing Valerie Plame. The MSM was not alone in echoing this theme as several prominent Democrats such as Sen. John Kerry, Sen. Harry Reid and Sen. Hillary Clinton suggested that the President uphold his pledge and urged him to fire Rove. Unfortunately for the MSM and the Democrats, President Bush made no such promise. President Bush said back in September of 2003:
If there is a leak out of my administration, I want to know who it is and if the person has violated the law, the person will be taken care of.
To me that sounds like if someone violated the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, they would not be above the law and be prosecuted and obviously be fired. It does not sound like President Bush would fire a person in his administration for a non-criminal leak related to the outing of Valerie Plame. Unless someone can point to some other direct quite from President Bush, I'm not sure where the Democrats and the MSM got the idea that President Bush made a promise to fire the leaker, even if the leak was not a criminal action.

Another major theme in yesterday's grilling was whether McClellan lied when he said in the fall of 2003 that he spoke to Rove and Rove told him that he had nothing to do with the outing of Valerie Plame. While I don't believe McClellan lied where he made that statement in the fall of 2003, he did mislead the media with the statement. Rove may not have engaged in a criminal action in his conversation with Matt Cooper, which is probably what McClellan viewed question as being asked of him (unfortunately I do not know what the exact wording of the question that prompted McClellan's response), but Rove did have something to do with the leak when he told Cooper that Wilson's wife authorized Wilson's trip to Niger. But again Rove likely did nothing wrong in disclosing what he did to Cooper

In fact, it appears Rove was only attempting to accurately rebut the lies Wilson wrote in his New York Times editorial. Despite the lack of a scandal here, there will continue to be pleas from the Democrats for Rove's firing or resignation and MSM outlets like the New York Times will continue to run breathless headlines like this: White House Silence on Rove's Role in Leak Enters 2nd Day.