Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Is anyone else worried?

I wasnt too worried about this whole valerie plame thing until today. I honestly thought that this investigation was going to result in nothing. It was my understanding that plame had a desk job at the cia and everyone knew she was a cia operative. Also, it was my understanding that Novak had heard she was an operative and asked Rove about it and he simply confirmed. How will this affect the President's legacy? Will this be THE second term scandal that will make him a lame duck president? or will he be like Reagan and have his efforts with the economy and the war on terror overshadow the scandal? Also, what about 2006?


At 10/26/2005 01:39:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we all had little heart attacks when Drudge put up an alert that ABC had two sources for an indictment of Libby -- he later retracted it, as either the source lied, or an ABC newsperson lied to try to bait the white house.

If there is an indictment, I'm guessing it would be Libby, and it would be for obstruction, not perjury.

And while that would be some problem, the fact is that nobody really knows VP staff (name previous ones). Heck, in most administrations losing the VP wouldn't be a big deal.

Even the wild rumors seem to be ignoring Rove now -- he would have been a bigger problem. If Libby is hit with a secondary-type indictment, the administration can let him go, and claim victory over the matter as they will have been cleared of violating national security.

In an interesting flashback, in March of 2001 some conservatives were calling for Libby to resign because he had ties with Marc Rich (the pardoned traitor).

At 10/26/2005 05:36:00 AM, Anonymous NOVA Scout said...

Anon's comment seems pretty squared away. MOreover, I don't think anything can damage the President's legacy more than Iraq already has. Everything else will seem trivial by comparison.

At 10/26/2005 08:28:00 AM, Blogger Mitch Cumstein said...

NoVA Scout is correct on the legacy issue. Future events notwithstanding, the Bush legacy will be the war in Iraq and the resulting federal budget and foreign policy issues.

As for 2006 and the rest of his presidency, this situation really hurts Republicans, particularly incumbents. On the way in to work this morning, I heard on WTOP that only 46% of Americans believe that most members of Congress deserve to be reelected, the lowest percentage since (drumroll, please) 1994. History, of course, always seems to find a way to repeat itself, and I think we may be witnessing that here. It's unfortunate that GOP lawmakers and executives, who were ushered into power based in part by the corruption of the Dems, haven't quite learned the lessons of the '90s. For Bush, I think that we'll probably see more and more Republican politicans start to disassociate themselves with the administration in effort to stay in office themselves. I think we're already starting to see some of that with the Miers nomination and social security reform.

The big questions are: How can Republicans maintain control of Congress and the White House without throwing a few folks to the wolves and, if they can't, who will those unfortunate sould be?

At 10/26/2005 11:18:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Space out what you write!

At 10/26/2005 12:16:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It was my understanding that plame had a desk job at the cia and everyone knew she was a cia operative."

The problem is that while some people might have been in-the-know, the extent of who she was and what she did when she DIDN'T have a desk job involved all sorts of covert fronts, a covert front corp, and sources in the field, all of whom get compromised when an agent is publically outed. The law also doesn't allow for either "cats already out of the bag" exucses: officially outing and agent publically is a no no, no matter how fine YOU think it is.

"Also, it was my understanding that Novak had heard she was an operative and asked Rove about it and he simply confirmed."

This would also be illegal: again, that's the "cat's already out of the bag" excuse, and it doesn't fly. If that were legal, then all any government employee would have to do to get around ANY national security confidentiality law is anonymously leak something, and then officially confirm its truth when asked, claiming that it was already publically known. But there's a big difference between an uncorroborated claim and an officially acknowledged one.

At 10/26/2005 12:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

By that logic, and I'm not denying that it's true, didn't Joe Wilson break the law himself in his book?

At 10/26/2005 01:29:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bush needs to make a major speech and annouce the total overhauling of his administration and its priorities. He needs to fire Libby & Rove now, and any other aides that may have been involved. He needs to put forward a plan for reducing troop deployment in Iraq. He needs to withdraw the nomination of Miers & nominate a real conservative. And he needs to committ to veto any bill w/ riders or wasteful spending so we can accomplish the rebuilding of the Gulf area affected by New Orleans.

At 10/26/2005 10:38:00 PM, Blogger James Young said...

This entire episode illustrates the "culture of corruption" in the Democrat Party more than anything else. I begin from the presumption that the original "offense" clearly was not a crime at all. The question then is, why are we discussing criminal charges? Apparently, because there may have been a legitimate effort to bring to light the truth about an Administration critic, and an unwarranted coverup of those efforts. Republicans are saying that, if a crime was committed, prosecutions should go forward.

Compare this course to the Democrat response to Clinton's crimes: lie; justify; excuse.

Sadly, none of the above facts will diminish the shrill rhetoric of the Bush Haters/Clinton Defenders.

But to answer the question, no, I'm not worried. But maybe that's the lawyer in me. Politically, this is just one more illegitimate club Dems will use to beat Republicans.

At 10/27/2005 10:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess the decision has been made to attack the character and integrity of the prosecutor. Who has to be slimed next in order to escape responsibility for anything?

At 11/01/2005 11:16:00 AM, Blogger James Young said...

Anon 10:42, no one here has "slimed" the prosecutor. "Sliming" him would be to attack his motives, or, say, suggest that he derives some perverse sexual satisfaction from doing his job. Oh, wait! That was the Clinonista charge against Ken Starr.

I think it's completely legitimate to question why the investigation continued after it was determined (which should have taken about five minutes) that Valerie Plame's identity was not "covert" within the meaning of the statute. There are a lot of explanations I might be willing to accept. I haven't heard any explanation yet given.


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