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if it's a scandal? if?

if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck...



Two issues here - is it a "scandal?" And, if so, will it have any sort of impact on local politics.

I'll agree with yellowdogdem that the Plame matter is a serious one and should be persued as such.

But, it's not going to have any impact on upcoming elections. The NY Times, Washington Post, LA Times, Tim Russert and the rest of the DC focused media may think the world revolves around this incident. But it's not going to make a lick of difference here in Colorado as Dems try to beat Beauprez, Allard, hold the legislature, etc.

Does anyone honestly believe that whether or not Karl Rove outed a CIA agent is the talk of the holiday bbqs this weekend??

I really wish Democrats would stop chasing ghosts hoping some sort of scandal will bring down Bush and the Republicans. Having a party that can connect to people's real lives and concerns about the future is the path to victory.

We got a good start in 2004 here in Colorado doing just that. It's that sort of work that will win elections for Democrats - not getting all worked up over Bush and all the
evil" things he and his cronies have done or will do.


"I really wish Democrats would stop chasing ghosts hoping some sort of scandal will bring down Bush and the Republicans. Having a party that can connect to people's real lives and concerns about the future is the path to victory."

Chasing ghosts? I think this is a little more serious than that.

But why can't we pursue corruption within this administration and try and connect with people on real issues? I don't see the two as being mutually exclusive...

View From the Cheap Seats

I think generally any sort of negatives for a political party at a national level don't necessarily creep town to a state level.

However....when there are so many negatives adding up for one political party, I think there comes a time when the majority of voters (those who don't follow this on a day-to-day basis but have a sense of what is going on) feel enough is enough.

You may very well hear "throw the bums out" just because they wash their hands of one particular party. These voters may ask themselves, "am I, and/or this country better off then two-four years ago".

For a Presidential race, I really feel it's all about the cult of personality. But for state level races (and below) where there is not as much media exposure, a candidate can get caught up in the dirty coattails of their party.


I don't think the two are mutually exclusive. As I said, I agree the Plame matter is serious and should be persued. But, I don't think it's going to help Democrats win elections in Colorado or elsewhere.

I just think that Democrats have spent too much time thinking the path to victory is to focus on the "evils" of Bush and the Republicans. We've spent too little time standing up for people against those evils.

It's not enough to point out the fire and tell people how bad the fire is, you gotta put it out too.

I hope Rove hangs by his toes in a public square for what he did. I'm just not convinced doing so will mean more Democratic governors, more Dems in the state legislatures, a Democratic controlled Congress, or a real Democrat in the White House (and not a poll tested/Lakoff phraseologist like HRC).

Donald E. L. Johnson

This is a non story because no crime was committed, as noted in TalkLeft comments and elsewhere. I've posted this on Huffington, but she's taken the holiday off and not posted July 3 comments. My July 3 comment was as follows:

1. Hasn't it been determined that the leak was not a crime and that no crime has been committed?
2. The issue decided by the SCOTUS was that reporters are not protected when they have information about a crime, even if no crime was committed, I guess.
3. Bush said in a recent TV interview that he thinks reporters should be required to give up their sources and that he was comfortable with the MIller and Cooper cases. Does that mean that he didn't know about Rove or that he did? Or that he knew nobody in his administration would be implicated, which could mean that the lefty O'Donnell could have this story wrong?
4. If Rove is in trouble, is it time to go back to, Woodward's (I think) book on how presidents always mishandle scandals. Will Bush spin this until he can't recover, or will he fire Rove, et al?
5. It's indisputable that Wilson and his wife were wrong and should live in disrepute for the rest of their lives, imho.
6. Novak is clear probably because he revealed his sources, imho. Did he do so with his sources' permission?
7. This is not an impeachable offense. If Rove is indicted or convicted, he will be pardoned at the end of Bush's term, as he should be, because he didn't violate the law. There was no crime, if you bother to understand the law, which probably would be inconvenient for the left.
8. Wilson said nothing that could have or would have prevented our invasion of Iraq because his facts were wrong and his known biases destroyed his credibility.
9. The U.S. invaded Iraq for the correct reasons, given the info available at the time. And we will continue the fight for the correct reasons, based on info available today. The left has no case, except it's more interested in its power than in the welfare of the country.


Ok maybe I must be missing some context here. Wasn't the Plame matter all about the President's people leaking classified information to the press to discredit Plame? When did leaking classified information to the press become legal? Everyone who has access to classified information must sign a piece of paper making them fully aware of the consequences of disclosing such information. The penalties are quite severe.

No, the President won't be impeached even if he did order Rove to leak classified information. The Republicans are more interested in staying in power than building a clean, honest government that people actually trust. In fact, building a dishonest, untrustworthy government is a means to their end: If the people don't trust government, then they won't mind if it's dismantled.


Classified information? We're talking about the identities of covert cia agents, Rove didn't have codeword clearance to have access to those names... someone else gave him that info.

Donald - perhaps no crime was commited but what about Rove lying to the FBI and/or the Grand Jury? Remember that Martha Stewart was found guilty of lying to the Feds about a crime that the jury ultimatley determined she didn't commit, we could be looking at something similiar.

Also, it's not really about Rove it's about having an in now to subpoena administration documents related to the Plame outing. The Plame leak was retaliation for husbands exposing that the President lied in the SOTU about the Yellowcake and Niger. What might the grand jury find in administation documents about WMD? The DSM seems to indicate we might find evidence of "fixing intelligence"... it's really early in the game but this could be really bad for BushCo

Phoenix Rising

1. It is pretty obvious that somewhere along the line, a crime was committed; Valerie Plame was a NOC - someone had to leak this information to someone. Rove didn't commit that particular crime - he didn't have the access. But he and other administration officials have told stories inconsistent with the facts apparently revealed by TIME's documents, and that could lead to perjury and cover-up charges.
2. The SCOTUS decided nothing, other than not to hear the appeal. This was probably a Good Thing for reporters, since it leaves the matter hanging.
3. Who knows what Bush thinks. He's proven enough arrogance that maybe he thought the investigation would run up against a stone wall.
4. The question of how to continue to handle an unravelling scandal is the one that has Democrats salivating. If the investigation turns up multiple indictments (Rove?, Libby?, two underlings in Cheney's office?), Bush will need to decide on the best damage control - which will it be?
5. Excuse me? Wilson and his wife were wrong about what, exactly? The Niger trip's results? That she wasn't the one who brought Wilson up for the position? The facts say they were right on these issues. If you're referring to Wilson's pointing out Rove, he has backed off of that a bit, saying only that he was warned by a reporter before the story broke of Rove's involvement...
6. Novak committed no crime; the statute doesn't cover reporters. He's unfortunately only guilty of extreme self-interest.
7. Rove isn't a Cabinet member; he can't be impeached, though he could be pardoned. And though he won't be charged with revealing the name, he may be stuck with perjury charges or other as-yet unknown charges. Yes, Bush could pardon him, but at what point does it look so bad that no-one wants to elect another Republican President?
8. I'd love to see a credible source on that. Wilson was a respected diplomat with a distinguished non-partisan career. His report on the Niger yellowcake is accepted fact, and was backed up by the UN IAEA report before the war began. The Niger documents were clear forgeries, and if you believe the folks on the left following the links, it was recently indicted US agent Franklin (ties to AIPAC and PNAC) that may have done the planting.
9. Things we knew about Iraq before the war started:
* Aluminum tubes were unsuitable for refining (DOE).
* No yellowcake (Wilson and IAEA).
* Main source was a known liar (CIA, INR, German Intelligence) with connections to a group inciting overthrow of Saddam.
* Chemical Weapons programs terminated, all weapons destroyed (Hussein Kamel, Iraqi defector and selectively-quoted source in Bush's out-of-date statements; also, UN inspectors).
* Saddam and Al-Qaeda were enemies; the one serious contact reported was proven false, all other contacts were informal and ended poorly (multiple intelligence agencies, foreign and domestic).
In short, we knew enough to seriously doubt the official line we were given before the war began.

As an additional note, the leaking of Plame's name also rolled up an extensive front company operation that had agents in almost every major country of interest, including North Korea (inside Yongbyong(sp?)), Iran, Libya, A.Q. Khan's network, Saudi Arabia (inside ARAMCO, monitoring oil issues), and so on. In the end, we lost so much more than just Plame. There are some rumors that the investigation has gone beyond leaking the name of a covert operative, and into more serious charges involving damaging national security; these charges do not all have the "knowing intent" clause that the outing law does.

IMHO, the impeachable offenses will be the damaging of national security and the intentional lies to Congress that led up to the war in Iraq, along with the clandestine and illegal diversion of resources (read: money and troops) from Afghanistan (where we were fighting the war against Al-Qaeda) to Iraq (where we weren't until we created enough chaos to let them in...).

If we had listened to those voices that have turned out to be correct in so many ways - or even had we listened to the Army War College, CENTCOM, State Department, and Gen. Shinseki on the war and reconstruction planning - we would have had billions to apply to more important security tasks like securing the border, installing port inspection equipment, and strengthening our infrastructure against terrorist attacks. I think the Republicans will pay in national elections if the Democrats articulate this well.

Phoenix Rising

Oops - I'm wrong, at least in part. Rove may be liable for disclosing Plame's name if, as Chief of Staff (that's his current position, no?), he received a security clearance. The 1982 statute protecting intelligence assets has a special clause for people who hold active security clearances, even if they weren't cleared for the information in question. Presumably, people who hold clearances know better than to let classified information get disseminated.


Please check out the timeline at www.clearblueskyoutwest.blogspot.com

I honestly believe that Rove may fall and pull Bush down with him in the next 10 months. Check the facts at the site above.

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