Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Plame Game

Since I first purchased it two days ago, I've been devouring Eric Boehlert's fantastic book, Lapdogs. In it, he covers Fitzgerald's part in the Plame Affair and applauds his work on the case. He writes:

"The administration had already established a habit for making life professionally unpleasant for reporters who pressed too hard, and with a president who at that time still boasted lofty approval ratings, most journalists shed away from the conflict. Instead, it fell to a special prosecutor to do the watchdog work traditionally overseen by the D.C. press corps. If it weren't for Fitzgerald, it's doubtful the press ever would have fully reported the leak story on its own, even though scores of reporters, editors, and producers were sitting on the key facts of the case."

After falling asleep after reading morsels not much unlike the one above, it was a little disheartening to wake up to the news that the charges against Rove had been dropped. My initial feeling was disappointment--that is, until I had a free moment to dabble in the blogosphere.

At FireDogLake, OpisIsHungry writes:
"Anne at 44 (and Jeralyn) are right I think: The language used by Luskin strongly suggests that Rove got immunity in exchange for his cooperation (it is probably the same deal I have been suggesting was offered to Novak way back when...) Otherwise he never would have testified in the Grand Jury to begin with.

'Does not anticipate seeking charges' means that if Rove testifies at Libby's trial as expected, and as his agreement no doubt provides for him to testify, (lawyers call it providing "ongoing cooperation"), then all will be well for him. But if he 'goes sideways' on Fitz and testifies differently from what is now expected, he could be charged-w/perjury certainly, and his deal to avoid criminal liability in the larger conspiracy could be 'off' as he could face charges in that as well." [Emphasis mine.]

Many on the blogosphere seem to think that Fitzgerald's eyes have shifted from Rove to a larger target. However, Michael points out that, "'straight arrow' Fitzgerald is likewise unlikely to go for all the marbles and call for Big Time to stand tall before the man." I would like to see Cheney indited as much as the next person, especially since this is not the only time he's authorized a leak of information. But like Michael, I have doubts that Fitzgerald is moving in on the higher-ups; instead, I believe that he'll more likely use Rove's testimony to convict Libby, stock, lock, and barrel.

However, as Salon points out, perhaps Fitzgerald's decision not to indict Rove isn't all that bad.


Blogger Michael said...

Thanks for the link, but, to be a bit of a straight arrow myself, all credit re: analysis of Fitzgerald's motives should go to Billmon, who, as always, is a key source...not to mention a pleasure to read.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006 11:52:00 PM  
Blogger jeffrey said...

I've got to agree with you... I think Fitz has gone as far up the ladder as he believes he can and still score a conviction.

Thursday, June 15, 2006 10:43:00 AM  

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