Sunday, May 14, 2006

Editorial: Could it be true? Rove indicted?

Saturday night on RadioNation with Laura Flanders Cindy Sheehan stated, of the administration, "I've been saying for a long time that I think they'll be hung by the end of this year." Could Sheehan and the rest of us be getting our wish before the November elections?

Jason Leopold, who's followed the Plamegate case closely and has a strong record of accuracy, reported on Friday:

Within the last week, Karl Rove told President Bush and Chief of Staff Joshua Bolten, as well as a few other high level administration officials, that he will be indicted in the CIA leak case and will immediately resign his White House job when the special counsel publicly announces the charges against him, according to sources.
Details of Rove's discussions with the president and Bolten have spread through the corridors of the White House where low-level staffers and senior officials were trying to determine how the indictment would impact an administration that has been mired in a number of high-profile political scandals for nearly a year, said a half-dozen White House aides and two senior officials who work at the Republican National Committee.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, sources confirmed Rove's indictment is imminent. These individuals requested anonymity saying they were not authorized to speak publicly about Rove's situation. A spokesman in the White House press office said they would not comment on "wildly speculative rumors."

And on Saturday, Jason Leopold wrote on the topic again:

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald spent more than half a day Friday at the offices of Patton Boggs, the law firm representing Karl Rove.
During the course of that meeting, Fitzgerald served attorneys for former Deputy White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove with an indictment charging the embattled White House official with perjury and lying to investigators related to his role in the CIA leak case, and instructed one of the attorneys to tell Rove that he has 24 hours to get his affairs in order, high level sources with direct knowledge of the meeting said Saturday morning.
Robert Luskin, Rove's attorney, did not return a call for comment. Sources said Fitzgerald was in Washington, DC, Friday and met with Luskin for about 15 hours to go over the charges against Rove, which include perjury and lying to investigators about how and when Rove discovered that Valerie Plame Wilson was a covert CIA operative and whether he shared that information with reporters, sources with direct knowledge of the meeting said.
It was still unknown Saturday whether Fitzgerald charged Rove with a more serious obstruction of justice charge. Sources close to the case said Friday that it appeared very likely that an obstruction charge against Rove would be included with charges of perjury and lying to investigators.

Could it really be true? Could one aspect of The Long Nightmare (a term we find more appropriate than Rumsfeld's The Long War) really be ending? No disrespect intended to Leopold, we're just a little guarded because, if it happened, this is really big.

Bully Boy's Brain, that's what Karl Rove was supposed to be. He wasn't. He was good at manipulating messages for campaigns (somewhat) but he was mainly good at going on attack. (Karen Hughes was far more involved in the message to the public. As one person wrote to the White House in a still mentioned letter from 2003, "She's us [the people] only smarter." Well, definitely smarter than the person who wrote the letter. But even the clueless didn't rush to pen lauditory notes about how Rove represented the best in all of us.)

He's a smear merchant, that's all he's ever really excelled at. Smear Max Clealand, smear John Kerry, smear anyone who speaks out. His feces is smeared all over the walls of America which is why it's difficult to believe there are none of his finger prints in the attacks and smears of Joseph Wilson that included, but were not limited to, outing his wife, Valerie Plame (who was a CIA agent).

Rove knows how to do the set up and how to do the sucker punch. Whether he was the one who put out the rumors of Bully Boy's cocaine use, as James Hatfield (the late author of Fortunate Son) asserted, it always played like Rove. Whether it was a plan that was set up ahead of time or one he stumbled upon when he'd fallen out of the Bully Boy's good graces during the first campaign for the presidency, it read like a Rove trademark.

Set up an author, whose background can be used to smear him, with the story of Bully Boy's cocaine use and then, when it gets attention from the press, bring up the author's background and ask how can someone like that be trusted?

It's not a denial of cocaine use. But it strikes some as a denial. The same way when Mary Mapes 60 Minutes II story aired asserting that Bully Boy didn't fulfill his obligations in the National Guard, the defense of Bully Boy was left to his demented fans because Bully Boy wasn't about to go on record with specifics.

Operating under the belief of "Why take the high road or the low road when the gutter's right there?" the whole thing smells of Rove.

And if Rove goes down, a lot of others should follow. As we noted last July in "Editorial: What did Hadley know and what did he do?"

Karl Rove's latest defense (as pointed out by The Common Ills) is that after speaking with Matt Cooper when Valerie Plame's name came up he immediately e-mailed then deputy national security advisor Stephen J. Hadley. And then what?
And then what?Did the e-mail confuse Hadley? Was their a follow up conversation of "Karl, what's this e-mail about?" Did Hadley immediately notify his boss (Condi Rice) what was going on? Did she follow up by notifying the Bully Boy?
[. . .]
We're not foolish enough to think the White House wasn't orchestrating the outing of Plame. But if that's going to be the spin point ("I prove I'm not guilty with my e-mail to Hadley!") then let's examine that spin point.
The spin argues Rove passed the news on up. Did it stop there? If so Hadley didn't do his job.Did it go higher? How much higher? A CIA agent was a national security issue. The outing of an agent was a national security issue.
No one's attempting to say Rove's absolved and innocent. We think he's neither. But if he's going to push this latest point, then we say let's explore it.

Now we're in the hallway and can't even see the tree, let alone the gifts beneath it, so we may be getting a little ahead of ourselves. If it's only Rove that gets indicted, we'll say, "Thank you! It's just what I wanted!" with real meaning.

We don't think Leopold's made anything up. We just know that until we shake the box and we tear back a little piece of the wrapping paper, Santa might have brought us a dopey sweater and forgotten to deliver one of the really important things at the top of our Christmas lists.

In comic books, movies and TV shows, we're told time and again that good triumphs over evil. We haven't seen much to indicate that this assertion is much more than a plot device. But, as Mama Cass/Cass Elliot once sang, "I can dream, can't I?"

We'll keep Grand Jury Dreamin' on this Mother's Day.

But we won't let the dream distract us from what's needed right now at this moment. As Cindy Sheehan writes in "The One Message That Politicians Fear" (BuzzFlash):

Now we are faced with the modern carnage of the occupation of Iraq, and still there are threats of another war of aggression in Iran. The Iraq policy is fatally flawed, especially for the nearly 2500 US deaths and for every one of these there has been 100 dead Iraqi civilians. We have to do something to build a peace movement that can stop blood-bathed foreign policy. We've demonstrated, written letters, sung songs, engaged in civil disobedience and traveled far and wide engaging our fellow Americans to demand that the troops come home.
[. . .]
The November elections are rapidly approaching, and the primary races come even sooner. Many are close elections where every vote is important. Candidates are jockeying for your support. We must tell them -- 'you don't get my vote unless you oppose the occupation of Iraq and will work to prevent future wars of aggression.'

We can dream (and we can dream big, a world beyond Bully Boy, Rove, et al) but we can also make sure not to take things for granted. (That is, after all, the role the Democratic Party has assigned itself in the last four elections. We'd hate to rob them of their chosen role.) Make demands, make your voice heard. Let every politician know that that votes are not automatic and that the people will be listened to, must be listened to.
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