If this story is true it's going to completely transform the dynamics of the current political climate. Bush's imminent nomination to the Supreme Court, his intention to reform Social Secuirty, not to mention the dwindling public support for the military presence in Iraq, all seem likely to suffer as a consequence.
Here is the story as I found it on Drudge... no other news organization is touching it with a barge poll, and it should be kept in mind that O'Donnel is a stauch liberal. Here is the story:
07.02.2005 Lawrence O'Donnell
Rove Blew CIA Agent's Cover
I revealed in yesterday's taping of the McLaughlin Group that Time magazine's emails will reveal that Karl Rove was Matt Cooper's source. I have known this for months but didn't want to say it at a time that would risk me getting dragged into the grand jury.
McLaughlin is seen in some markets on Friday night, so some websites have picked it up, including Drudge, but I don't expect it to have much impact because McLaughlin is not considered a news show and it will be pre-empted in the big markets on Sunday because of tennis.
Since I revealed the big scoop, I have had it reconfirmed by yet another highly authoritative source. Too many people know this. It should break wide open this week. I know Newsweek is working on an 'It's Rove!' story and will probably break it tomorrow.
This poses the administration a series of problems. The most notable, besides the obvious are:
1) This could prove that Rove committed perjury. Rove I think is Deputy Chief of Staff as well as Senior political advisor to the president. He's the fourth most senior member of the administration in theory, behind Bush, Cheney, and Card, but, he's emerged as THE most senior member in reality. The fundamental cause of Clinton's impeachment in 97/98 was that he committed perjury according to those who vociferously pursued him. And yet, they sereptiously defined the issue by the moral implications for the President of the United States. It was of no concern to them that he'd been less than truthful with a matter that didn't really apply to his job, was intensely personal, and, in actuality, none of the American people's, nor Special Council's business... especially when the investigation in question was into the Whitewater affair.
But, by contrast, Rove's alleged perjury involves the exposing of an undercover CIA operative, potentially endangering her life, for political purposes. The motivation was to damage her husband's articulate opposition to the Iraq war, and his attack on key findings that Iraq had traded in WMD (or his lack of confirmation).
I don't know how the right are going to be able to reconcile the two situations with their rhetoric in defense of Rove, if this story does break.
2) Bush dealt with the issue at the time by coming out and aggressively stating that anyone found to have leaked this information in the White House would be dealt with by him personally. He cleverly avoided any responsibility by placing the emphasis on the investigation, and asserting his strongly held conviction that the culprit be caught and punished. If the leak came from Rove, the presiden't closest advisor, this makes Bush look like very bad. It makes him look more incapable than any of his mispronunciations have in the past. The credibility of the Republican party will be at stake, and so will be the election of 08, and I know that a lot of Senators like McCain and others will step forward to reflect this. If true, this is dangerous territory for Bush and his agenda over the next few years.
3) The Investigation is hardly viewed as impartial. This will be a huge test for the integrity of the Attorney General's office, especially when the Attorney General finds himself in line for a nomination to the Supreme Court... the first latin American to ever hold such a senior position in gov't.
There has been an additional article posted on Drudge:
Karl Rove, President Bush's chief political adviser, spoke with TIME mag's Matthew Cooper during a critical week in July 2003 when Cooper was reporting on a public critic of the Bush administration who was also the husband of a CIA operative.
But Rove did not leak the name of the CIA op Plame, Rove's lawyer said again Saturday night.
Robert Luskin said Rove never identified Plame to Cooper in those conversations.
"Karl did nothing wrong. Karl didn't disclose Valerie Plame's identity to Mr. Cooper or anybody else,'' Luskin said to the WASHINGTON POST. Luskin said the question remains unanswered: ``Who outed this woman? ... It wasn't Karl.''
NBC's Lawrence O'Donnell claimed this weekend, 'Rove Blew CIA Agent's Cover'.
"Emails will reveal that Karl Rove was Matt Cooper's source. I have known this for months," O'Donnell said.
Interesting stuff. It's weird that Rove's lawyer doesn't make reference to any emails. He refers to conversations. Karl Rove must have said something in those emails because this doesn't sound like a pure misinterpretation. What it does show is that major news organisations like the Washingston Post are investigating the case. Rove must have record of the emails in question, and if O'Donnel has known about this for months then so must have the administration. Their passivity is either evidence of them... awaiting the impending media storm, confusion about what the acutual evidence is, or complete confidence that Rove has committed no wrong.
It appears that so much of this will once again turn to Robert Novak who originally divulged the story about who the CIA operative was.
Robert Novak is a narcisist. He loves attention, and stridently exudes his didactic right wing bravado. The opportunity to speak up will definately appeal to him. No matter who his source was, he could single handedly break the biggest political scandal since Watergate... maybe this time around the temptation might be too much.
Very interesting stuff. I know people everywhere will be hoping this news story is the conduit through which the truth can be determined about what happened to Valerie Plame.
karl rove, politics, joseph wilson, valerie plame, lawrence o'donnell, whitehouse, democratic, robert novakiraq war, enriched uranium, saddam hussein, george bush