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February 10, 2007

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Patton

So I take it Fitz wouldn't prosecute a bank robber if he repeatedly insisted that he didn't do it and was prepared to testify to that affect?

kate

After reading Waas' article on how this whole thing started, there is a familiar pattern to all this. The career bureaucrats plan to embarrass the Administration (CIA/STATE/DOJ). Administration officials get spooked, PR disaster follows.

I would like to see Bush take a risk and pardon Libby. I think his supporters, seeing some signs of life, will take on the media for him. Unfortunatley, I suspect he'll just roll over, as usual.

Ralph L.

400!
Sara, I think Chestitage should be recalled to active duty and court martialed for conduct unbecoming. The one time he should have blabbed, he clammed up. One hopes his Army friends (besides Powell) give him lots of guff.

MayBee

Well, Patton, I think Fitzgerald is benefitting from the WaPo's refusal- or failure= to retract or correct its 1x2x6 story. I believe in Hubris they say they considered it, but didn't.

That' entered into the court record, partially because those reporters wouldn't do what Andrea Mitchell did- make a public statement they were wrong.
Ironically, I suspect, because the one without the retraction was probably the bigger misrepresentation of fact.

MayBee

Ranger- great thinking on the reporter charges. To supplement, I found this quote from a Waas article. Note that his expert is from SDNY:

Dan Richman, a professor at Fordham Law School and a former federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, said in an interview that while he could not speak specifically about what occurred between Tate and Abrams, an "attorney encouraging a witness to withhold information from a grand jury when the witness had no right to withhold is engaging in obstructive behavior."

Richman further noted that since current case law does not recognize the reporter-source privilegeeven if someone under investigation or their attorney were to contact a reporter simply to say that they expect that reporter's promise of confidentiality to the source to be kept, anyone who made such a request could possibly have engaged in an obstruction of justice or witness-tampering."

Doesn't this kind of bolster the mindset you are talking about, and I referred to earlier-- the reporter not talking led them to the belief there was obstruction there.
The REPORTERS actions, in their minds, helped point to the SOURCE'S guilt.
That's wrong.

Tom Maguire

Iam sm thread-skipping again, and this may actually be a serious questiom, but - if the rule is that the *prosecution* cannot call a witness simply to impeach them, did that keep Cheney off the stand? And Rove?

E.g., Fitzgerald can't ask Cheney if he ordered the Code Red if Cheney already gave Fitzgerald a "no" answer.

I still like the defense argument that the prosecution is subject to many limitations that don't apply to the defense.

Tom Maguire

1. Tim Russert equivocates when the FBI asks him about Plame leaks in Nov 2003; he says he does not "know" that "Valerie Plame" was a "CIA operative" involved with her husband's trip, so he could not have asked that of Libby.

Libby's story was that he talked to Russert on the 10th or 11th, but that he also talked to Rove in the afternoon after talking to Russert.

Since Rove left for vacation late Firday morning, that suggests they spoke on the afternon/evening of the 10th.

That also suggests that clarifying Gregory's role, who heard of Plame from Fleischer on the 11th (unless he didn't), is not mission critical to the defense vis a vis Russert.

However, impeaching Fleischer still lurks as an alternative role for him.

The Duo-fecta (Die!-fecta?) would be that Gregory impeaches Fleischer and Mitchell impeaches Russert - tough day for NBC News as they crater the prosecution case. Love to watch them report on that.

Ralph L.

What is 1x2x6? I haven't followed the Blame Plame Game too closely.

This thing is working poorly on dialup. Where is the Thread Herder when you need him?

kate

My fantasy outcome is an acquittal on all counts with an interview with a jury member who says:

I just didn't believe those media types, especially Russert, he had such shifty eyes.

A gal can dream, can't she.

Tom Maguire

Am I the only one that thinks the July 14 , 2003 spat between Andrea and Armitage relates to the possibility that he told her the story on deep background not for publication or whatever folderol they use to mean for your ears only and then gave Novak the scoop?

I think the spat was on the 20th and of course the timing may only be a coincidence, but... it could also be that she wanted to get permission to write about Plame or learn more about her and Armitage had figured he'd already said too much.

Tom Maguire

I would not even accept this analysis from my first year law students.

I would not even accept this rebuttal from my ten year old, who by now has learned the importance of providing specific examples when telling me his sister did "it".

buzz off eh

Good point! Isn't there a hockey game on somewhere?

First, the reason Tim Russert could and did testify that he did not tell his bosses about the FBI call was that he did not need to tell them. His lawyers told them. Remember, the lawyers are NBC’s lawyers and that was on purpose.

Excellent point, I have considerd that earlier, and it still leaves this question - Russert can't remember if he told Shapiro.

Shouldn't he have a specific memory of *not* telling Shapiro on the advice of in-house counsel? Or at least a story about "It was impossible for me to tell Shapiro since I was told not to"?

(An answer to that is, what exactly is a specific memory of a non-event? Still, Russert could have explained why he did probably did not tell Shapiro.

centralcal

Good morning Tom. This thread is getting cumbersome and I have DSL, pity the poor dial-up people.

I have a question that may be rude in the blogmasters world, but I was curious is you are seeing a significant spike in your traffic? I hope so. I hope people are trying to keep informed about the Libby trial.

centralcal

if, not is

Patton

"""I would not even accept this analysis from my first year law students.""

So apparently, you didn't educate Fitz...a feather in your cap.

But if somewhere on this site it said we were all lawyers, writing about law, I might get your point.

The fact the law doesn't recognize common sense doesn't bode well for the law.

Ranger

That also suggests that clarifying Gregory's role, who heard of Plame from Fleischer on the 11th (unless he didn't), is not mission critical to the defense vis a vis Russert.

However, impeaching Fleischer still lurks as an alternative role for him.

Posted by: Tom Maguire | February 11, 2007 at 05:43 AM

TM, except that Russert claimed in his testemony that he did not learn of Plame's role until he read it in the Novak column on the 14th (date specific). That means that if Gregory supports Ari's story of telling on the 11th, he still impeaches Russert (or admitst that he was a pis-poor journo and left a block buster story handed to him on a platter because he didn't realize its significance).

And that is why Fitz never pressed for his testimony. Either way, it blows one of his two witnesses out of the water.

Patton

"""I would not even accept this analysis from my first year law students.""

So apparently, you didn't educate Fitz...a feather in your cap.

But if somewhere on this site it said we were all lawyers, writing about law, I might get your point.

The fact the law doesn't recognize common sense doesn't bode well for the law.

Ranger

MayBee,

This sounds like it is getting very close to saying that anyone who asserts a privlidge not already established in law is obstructing justice:

an "attorney encouraging a witness to withhold information from a grand jury when the witness had no right to withhold is engaging in obstructive behavior."

In other words, 'if you don't tell your client what we want them to hear, you're in trouble too.'

Patton

Russert said he read Novaks column on the AFTERNOON of the 14th. Then he asked a bunch of people at work and they had not heard about it yet.

So noone at NBC reads the wires? No one reads the morning paper? No one reads Novak?

But what did Russert do?? He said it was a big story? Did he go anywhere with it? NO!

It appears all the people who claim that this was a big story and unforgettable need to explain:

1. Why did Miller not do anyything with it in June? Or in July? Did she even tell Abrahson this shocking news?

2. Why did Dickerson or Gregory go with anything if they learned this shocking news?

3. Why did Russert not go on the air, the nightly news, MSNBC, etc to announced this huge news?

4. Why didn't Woodward do anything with this huge news? Why doesn't Pincus remeber him telling him this huge news.


CAN ANYONE FIND A SINGLE INSTANCE WHERE ANY OF THESE PEOPLE/NEWS OUTLETS CONSIDERED THIS HUGE NEWS PRIOR TO CORN PUTTING OUT HIS 'OUTING AN UNDERCOVER AGENT' DRIVEL??

clarice

TS:"Do you wonder if "Hubris" - the printing before the trial was a purposeful derailment or just a derailment inadvertently?"
I think Hubris was rushed to print because interest was high and there was $$$ to be had with a quickly turned out book. Period.

MJW: I suspect that the case the SP made to the gj was what we heard at the presser.

Now, we have developed an interesting theory last night and this morning--one that could make a great piece:In a case wbout who leaked information (which no one can prove was secret "classified" information) did the chief investigator leak truly secret (gj) testimony to reporters?


To develop this we'd have to go thru all of Waas' stories during the gj period and extract what secret stuff was leaked.


Dwilkers

Interesting post Clarice.

How in the world do FBI agent's notes become lost? I don't believe it either.

That should be shocking to anyone with an interest in fairness.

clarice

I posted it above--in the Branch Davidian case the only one charged was the AUSA --for destroying notes of an interview which blew the govt's theory of the case. The FBI was able to nab him because of imprints ot the note on his pad of paper.

Does this sort of thing happen often? I hope not but *if Eckenrode was leaking to anti-Administration writers secret grand jury and investigative matters* and the summary which remains shows Russert was far less emphatic in his denial of Libby's claims that the indictment says he was, those original notes would sink this case and the man who took them has by leaking established his partisanship and lack of fealty to his oath to behave honorably already, hasn't he?

clarice

***Does this sort of thing happen often? I hope not but *if Eckenrode was leaking to anti-Administration writers secret grand jury and investigative matters* and the summary which remains shows Russert was far less emphatic in his denial of Libby's claims than the indictment says he was, those original notes would sink this case and the man who took them has by leaking established his partisanship and lack of fealty to his oath to behave honorably already, hasn't he?*******

Let me outline the argument to make it clearer:
1. If E was leaking secret gj and investigative matters to Waas and maybe others, he establishes that he is a partisan with a purpose:Get the administration.
2. The summary shows that Russert's denial was not emphatic but hedged--he may have mentioned Wilson's wife to Libby it says.
3. The notes would provide more evidence of that but along with E they are missing.
4. Whatever Russert said to Libby is at the heart of Fitz' stupid case. Evidence in his possession contrary to his claim would kill this tottering edifice.
5. If E was so partisan, and he took the notes, and they are missing, what is the jury to think?
6. And BTW the gj proceedings are secret and it is a crime for those involved to leak what goes on there whereas no one can show that anything Libby said was illegal to transmit.

Ta DAH

kate

I believe that the colleagues of Eckenrode did no favor to him by actually leaking his name to Jason, major error. Jason foolishly published the name, while Waas was much more careful. I never saw a denial or retraction from Ecknerode and his non-appearance at the trial shows that Fitz thought him a clear liability and went for the less polished Bond.

lurker
I think Hubris was rushed to print because interest was high and there was $$$ to be had with a quickly turned out book. Period.

Some short term gains with long term dis-credibility risk.

sid

Clarice,

I thought MJW's question had to do with the trial rather than the GJ. Doesn't Fitz have to introduce evidence to substantiate the elements of the alleged crime? Doesent he somehow have to show that he was actually investigating a real crime as defined by the statutes? Mustn’t he also show, at trial, how Libby’s statements, if actually false, were material to that investigation?

clarice

He does, and I think he's hoping the jury will be confused by the crime he couldn't prove (IIPA) which is why he got in the news articles etc.

(NEW THREAD UP GUYS)

MnMnM

Recent clues point to Abbott and Costello as original architects of Plame Leak.
Grand Jury testimony of Scooter Libby, former Chief of Staff of the United States (COSTUS) for the Vice President, leaked by Rove-ing reporter (humor).

It is posted at: Libby Knows who Leaked First

Bobbing and weaving, a tangled web we do. Book him, Danno.
Please keep my identity a secret. Double super Secret.
Middle-aged, Middle-of-the-road, Mid-Westerner

We can only hope that Fitz doesn't fizzle.
I think Mr. Fitzgerald's motto should be: "If you do a white collar crime then you will serve blue collar time." Look where he lodged Judith Miller. A few months in a blue collar jail and she was ready to sing. Unfortunately, she says she forgot the words

The Times & Post They Should Be A-Changin

Bloggers Request:

Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
And don't speak too soon
For the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who
That it's namin'.
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the Times & Post should be a-changin'.

Good Bye Sulzberger, Keller, Miller, and Woodward!

Fitzgerald's response:

Come politician's, journalists
Please heed the call
Don't stand in the doorway
Don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled

There's a battle outside
And it is ragin'.
It'll soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the convictions, they are a-comin'.

--Bob Dylan
Perhaps for Rove?

Pofarmer

Well, excuse me Mr. Fitz, but isn't that exactly why your prosecuting Libby.

It looks to me like Libby's story has been the most consistent one of the bunch, from what we've seen so far.

MnMnM

Okay, okay, I admit it -- like everyone else I know it was Armitage that leaked first, and Libby had nothing to do with it. But I still harbor this deeply psychological daddy-didn't-love-me-enough hatred for Karl Rove.

I was just trying to drive traffic to my pathetic little website. It hasn't had very many hits in the past 24 business hours.

- Jason

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

CBS had Dan Rather take a very dramatic fall; after first risking a great deal to save him from following Mary Mapes off the ledge.

Once he dropped, though he went down with the speed of an anchor. And, then? CBS couldn't really set sail, anymore.

NOW?

NBC will get killed by the clock. Because Russert forgot to add, when asked a simple question of "HOW DO GUESTS GET BOOKED ON YOUR SHOW," ...

That the "Beat The Clock" correct answer was TIMELINESS. A guest is booke (like Joe Wilson) because the media is in a frenzy to GET HIS STORY OUT.

Clarice uses the word "possum." When I was a kid, "to play bossum" meant you were hiding. And, very, very quiet. Unless you tripped over the broom, in the closet, and your hding place was easy enough to find.

Russert is worried. He's out on a limb, now.

And, the DEFENSE will first start on Monday.

Jill Abramson "sits" first.

And, the NBC stuff? Hangs out in "limbo.

Doesn't mean it won't come in.

And, Mitchell, who knows something about "booking" talent; which you can tell just from her expressed outrage that Armitage ended up on Van Susstern's (sp?0 show first ... Means that there's a great deal of "MITCHELL BACKSTAGE STUFF," where some people practice their knife throwing acts. Where a miss is not as good as a hit.

Up ahead? I think Russert sinks on his "HATS" analogy. They won't appear real, anymore than Kerry's Cambodian souvenier.

While in the "guiet" department? Drudge once worked (a real shitty job) at NBC. Retailing their souveniers, as a matter of fact.

WHile, later, Drudge built his Internet fame by getting the janitors to give him the Nielsen ratings. Rather than letting this stuff reach the shredders.

So, yes. Drudge is quiet, now. Because the wave hasn't surged high enough for him to jump on and beat the pants, yet again, after the slow media giants are proving their speed is similar to an oil tanker's out at sea. You just can't turn them around fast enough. Makes being on one horrible when it has to turn away from a furocious storm.

STORM WARNINGS. You heard it hear first.

Drudge will drop the bomb shell (against NBC) in due time.

Will Russert fly off NBC as fast as Dan Rather flew down Black Rock? Well, in physics, all things drop, per gravity, at the same rate. Unless they're held up like feathers. Light enough to be around for a long, long time. But no longer attached to anything living.

UglyinLA

I have just recently found this site by following "Clarice" links. I am sure that this has already been put forth and it may not be the right blog for this topic. It pertains to who outted Valerie Plame.

Here and on other blogs, I continually see July 11th or 12th of 2003 as a key date. However, it appears to me that the earliest mention of Joe Wilson's trip was on June 12, 2003, in an article written for the Washington Post by Walter Pincus. http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&contentId=A46957-2003Jun11&notFound=true

An excerpt: the CIA in early February 2002 dispatched a retired U.S. ambassador to the country to investigate the claims, according to the senior U.S. officials and the former government official, who is familiar with the event. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity and on condition that the name of the former ambassador not be disclosed.

I believe that article was the catalyst that sent reporters scurrying to their "inside sources" to find out who this "former ambassador" was. It is also known that Joe and his wife Valerie were a familiar entity in the DC cocktail circuit.

I believe that by the time Novak wrote his June 14, 2003 "agency operative" tag, Valerie Plame was already outed. I believe this because prior to his article, he contacted the CIA to inquire about Valerie Plame. "At the CIA, the official designated to talk to me denied that Wilson's wife had inspired his selection but said she was delegated to request his help. He asked me not to use her name, saying she probably never again will be given a foreign assignment but that exposure of her name might cause "difficulties" if she travels abroad. He never suggested to me that Wilson's wife or anybody else would be endangered. If he had, I would not have used her name. I used it in the sixth paragraph of my column because it looked like the missing explanation of an otherwise incredible choice by the CIA for its mission."

No problem discussing Valerie Plame, just don’t mention her name.

It seems to me that Fitzgerald had no intent on finding the truth. He may, unintentionally, open up a can of worms for reporters and their notes and sources. Even if Libby is rightfully found to be not guilty, I will not be satisfied since this trial is not about Valerie Plame. I am looking forward to the lawsuit by Joe and Valerie accusing Cheney and Rove and Libby of revealing Plame's identity. That should be an enlightening endeavor.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

So many different link ups, today. But Drudge is posting that TENET's book is out. And, I went to Amazon. SO if you're curious, he's my link to Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_/104-2844678-5406301?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=george+tenet&Go.x=0&Go.y=0&Go=Go

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Wilson/Plame