October 28, 2005

A Let-Down For Libs

There aren't too many details at this time. But it looks like one idictment for Scooter Libby, with five counts: obstuction of justice, perjury (2), making false statements (2). None of the indictments relate to an "outing" of a CIA operative. It appears neither Libby nor anyone else in the administration was deemed to have "outed" Valerie Plame. Did anyone, technically speaking? Who knows? We certainly don't know who Robert Novak's source it yet.

The indictments have to do with the investigation. And while we don't have Libby's side of the story, Fitzpatrick deemed that the answers he gave had the appearance of being intentionally misleading. Libby has officially resigned and no doubt will have his day in court.

Legally, I can't really comment on the indictments as I don't speak legalese. I need to look at the analysis of others. There are still a lot of unanswered questions here.

Politically, while this isn't a great outcome for the administration it's basically a big goose-egg for the Democrats and others on the left when compared to the hopes and dreams they had of perp walks, handcuffs, jackets over the head...and oh yes Karl Rove.

The fact is, if you were to ask your co-workers who Scooter Libby is, very few would know. In fact, I guaranty at least one of them would answer: the orange muppet with the google-eyed glasses. Hell, most people don't even know who Karl Rove is but they may have at least heard the name before.

Anyway, we need to wait and see how this plays out to accurately gage the fallout but if I was a Rove-hating Liberal today, I'd be pretty disappointed.

UPDATE: 2:55pm
Listened to the press conference. Here's my take-away:
1) Neither Libby nor Rove nor anyone else knowingly or intentionally "outed" Valerie Plame.
2) Someone's statements or actions did lead to Plame being "outed". Exactly who that person is has not been revealed and that person is not being charged with any crime
3) Prior to Libby's testimony, there was no crime committed. Libby committed a "crime" by saying he first learned of Plame's investigation on a certain date and they have testimony that he in fact knew and said so prior to that. It's this false testimony that "obstructed" the investigation and that is a crime under the rules of a grand jury investigation.

So the ideas that 1) the revelation of Plame's identity was something the White House did to "get back" at Joe Wilson and 2) that this can be extrapolated to a scenario that the whole WMD charge was fabricated by the White House as a justification to got to war in Iraq are completely out the window.

More analysis as this percolates.

UPDATE II: 3:55pm
One thing that I can't quite figure out. By "outing" a CIA operative, you're not saying they worked for the CIA, you're revealing that they were operating "covertly" for the CIA. Near as I can tell, Libby (or any one else, including the reporters) never said or is reported to have said that Plame was a "covert" agent. When asked by a reporter at the presser, Fitzgerald would not say whether or not Plame was, in fact, classified as a "covert" agent.

So was she really, then? I'll have to do some searching around about that.

Posted by: Gary at 01:55 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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1 The spin begins here!

Posted by: stanzepa at October 28, 2005 03:02 PM (bVxTX)

2 Actually it doesn't look like there's much to "spin" here. I'm just going by what Fitzgerald is saying. If my interpretation is wrong (which it certainly could be), I'll clarify.

Posted by: Gary at October 28, 2005 03:08 PM (QoxB+)

3 The liberals have to take what they can get. Rove didn't get indicted, so they have to turn this into some monstrous conspriracy. Or something.

Posted by: rightwingprof at October 29, 2005 10:29 AM (hj1Wx)

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