Now This IS Interesting Scottie McClellan News

Back in November, when Scottie McClellan’s publisher first started to pitch Scottie’s book, he made a stir when he posted the following blurb about the book.

The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. So I stood at the White house briefing room podium in front of the glare of the klieg lights for the better part of two weeks and publicly exonerated two of the senior-most aides in the White House: Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

There was one problem. It was not true.

I had unknowingly passed along false information. And five of the highest ranking officials in the administration were involved in my doing so: Rove, Libby, the vice President, the President’s chief of staff, and the President himself.

That set off a minor firestorm, as people misread the plain language of the blurb to mean that Bush had knowingly asked Scottie McC to lie about Libby’s and Rove’s involvement in the leak of Valerie Wilson’s identity. As I pointed out then, the firestorm probably contributed to making little Scottie rich.

Scottie McC’s publisher has pulled off quite the coup–taken a detail that was, largely, already known, and used it to cause a stir about a book that will not yet be published for another 6 months. Already, Dodd is calling for an investigation, folks are calling for HJC or Waxman to hold a hearing. What the left has done is read one publishing blurb designed to generate this kind of buzz, and played right into the plan. Congratulations. You’re all making Scottie McC rich.

And while I still don’t advocate that you all go out and buy Scottie’s book (tell you what–I’ll buy it and tell you the interesting bits), this little revelation is interesting news.

McClellan also suggests that Libby and Rove secretly colluded to get their stories straight at a time when federal investigators were hot on the Plame case.

“There is only one moment during the leak episode that I am reluctant to discuss,” he writes. “It was in 2005, during a time when attention was focusing on Rove and Libby, and it sticks vividly in my mind. … Following [a meeting in Chief of Staff Andy Card’s office], … Scooter Libby was walking to the entryway as he prepared to depart when Karl turned to get his attention. ‘You have time to visit?’ Karl asked. ‘Yeah,’ replied Libby.

“I have no idea what they discussed, but it seemed suspicious for these two, whom I had never noticed spending any one-on-one time together, to go behind closed doors and visit privately. … At least one of them, Rove, it was publicly known at the time, had at best misled me by not sharing relevant information, and credible rumors were spreading that the other, Libby, had done at least as much. …

“The confidential meeting also occurred at a moment when I was being battered by the press for publicly vouching for the two by claiming they were not involved in leaking Plame’s identity, when recently revealed information was now indicating otherwise. … I don’t know what they discussed, but what would any knowledgeable person reasonably and logically conclude was the topic? Like the whole truth of people’s involvement, we will likely never know with any degree of confidence.” [my emphasis]

This meeting had to have taken place between July–when it became clear Rove was a source for Bob Novak and Matt Cooper–and late October–when Libby was indicted and subsequently resigned. Probably, it was in July, when Scottie McC was under a great deal of fire for vouching for Rove, and in precisely the time frame when Robert Luskin offered to have Rove testify again (for the fourth, not yet the fifth, time). Which, incidentally, means it was before Libby wrote an Aspen letter to Judy Judy Judy and released her to testify–so it was during a period when Libby believed his ruse of hiding behind "journalists" had succeeded (though it would have been just after Judy went to jail).

Scottie describes Rove, not Libby, initiating the meeting, which suggests that if Scottie McC is correct and they were comparing notes, it would be about something Rove knew and not Libby. If I had to guess, I’d say one or several of the following was the subject of the meeting.

  • Luskin’s upcoming plan to claim he found the Rove-Hadley email after having "learned" from Viveca Novak that Rove did have a Matt Cooper problem. It would have been important for Rove to alert Libby to this plan if this email was not what it appeared to be or if there had been a concerted effort to destroy incriminating emails. Which, of course, there appears to have been.
  • Either the news that Richard Armitage was Novak’s "source" and/or Rove’s plan (implemented the night before the indictment) to smoke Armitage out by pushing Woodward to reveal he had received a leak from Armitage. Don’t forget Woodward’s comment, suggesting he told Rove himself that Armitage had leaked to him: "Well, you talk to people, you talk to somebody in the White House or the CIA or the Democratic Party, and you say, ‘I’ve heard or I understand; what are you hearing?’ And one of the discoveries in all of this is that reporters, in asking questions, convey information to even somebody like Karl Rove."
  • Rove’s recognition that he would have to testify again–making it more likely that Fitzgerald would learn more about the July 9, 2003 Libby-Novak conversation that both men had tried to hide. In particular, depending on how Rove testified in October 2005, Rove might have made it clearer to Fitzgerald that Libby had–at a minimum–leaked the still-classified CIA report on Joe Wilson’s trip to Novak during that conversation.
  • Update: This was also the period when (presumably) Rove was spreading a false story about Ari Fleischer being a big source here. I can imagine why he might want to clue Libby in on that smear–and Libby did try to use it in his defense.

In Libby’s trial, Patrick Fitzgerald presented a good deal of evidence to suggest that Libby and Cheney met several times in October 2003 to get their story straight. It takes no great leap of imagination to believe that everyone involved in leaking Valerie’s identity was doing so repeatedly.

And there are several reasons why Rove might have felt the need to compare stories with Scooter Libby in July 2005.

129 replies
  1. Loo Hoo. says:

    Hi Marcy! Keith just reported on this with your respected Rachel. Now to read your report.

    Didn’t Fitz chat with McClellan?

  2. Peterr says:

    You’re headed back to the weeds, I see.

    I can only say this to Rove, should he be lurking: Be afraid, Karl — be very afraid. You do *not* want Marcy poking around in the weeds.

  3. Peterr says:

    When Valerie wanted to get her book published, she had to run it past the folks at the CIA for clearance. (In theory, a good rule/law, though in her case it was obviously used to mess with her.)

    Is there a similar rule/law that would have required Scottie to submit his manuscript to the White House for clearance, or is that a CIA rule only?

  4. Loo Hoo. says:

    Just a note to everyone on the last thread. I am so impressed with your work, and wish I had something to contribute. Thanks. Brilliant people all around.

  5. sojourner says:

    I just have to wonder what it is that drives these people… If I had two idiots like Rove and Libby who chose to purposely mislead me about their culpability in a serious matter, so that I would stand up and proclaim their innocence before the world, I would be royally pissed. “Scathing” would not begin to describe the book that I would write.

    McClellan proclaims to still admire Bush, calling him “authentic” and “sincere” while saying that Bush also used propaganda to sell the Iraq war.

    Is McClellan psychotic or something?

  6. emptywheel says:

    Incidentally, one point I didn’t put in the post:

    There is only one moment during the leak episode that I am reluctant to discuss

    Suggesting he doesn’t want to talk about it. But, um, he’s talking about it. Which says to me he wants to talk about it.

    To what end? In an attempt to get Scooter and Turdblossom back for hanging him out to dry?

    • MadDog says:

      Odds are that anything Scottie writes wrt the betrayal of Valerie Plame Wilson has already been told to Fitzgerald? Odds on!

      But insufficiently corroborated as evidence to frogmarch Turdblossom.

      But sufficiently accurate that Turdblossom will never sue for libel. He can’t afford to be cross-examined…under any circumstances.

    • Rayne says:

      Can’t answer the hanging out to dry question…is Scotty gainfully employed now? if not, well, that might be your answer. Was he cut off the winger welfare roll or no?

      As for wanting to talk: I took that as an invitation for a subpoena. Which makes me wonder if he’s really a tar baby, but it could simply be that I’m utterly and completely cynical about anything any of the vipers does.

      What the hell, subpoena him, it’s worth the entertainment and the negative press for conservatives.

      • dakine01 says:

        Not sure if this has any bearing but don’t forget that Scotty’s mother deserted the R party in ‘06 and ran for Governor of Texas against Gov Goodhair so the family rebellion might also have left some hard feelings for Scotty.

        I do have to laugh when I see something proposing Gov Goodhair as a possible VP for McCain since I don’t think he broke 40% against Scotty’s mom, a not real strong Dem, and a singer/songwriter/author/raconteur who wasn’t taken all that seriously by many pundits.

    • Muzzy says:

      Re McClellan’s remark: “There is only one moment during the leak episode that I am reluctant to discuss”

      One thought that crossed my mind is that this remark is a bluff to give Rove pause in case any ‘accidents’ might be headed Scottie’s way.


  7. Leen says:

    Let’s not forget Ari Fleisher’s roll in the Plame outing
    Q: Can you give us the White House account of Ambassador Wilson’s account of what happened when he went to Niger and investigated the suggestions that Niger was passing yellow cake to Iraq? I’m sure you saw the piece yesterday in The New York Times.

    FLEISCHER: Well, there is zero, nada, nothing new here. Ambassador Wilson, other than the fact that now people know his name, has said all this before. But the fact of the matter is in his statements about the Vice President—the Vice President’s office did not request the mission to Niger. The Vice President’s office was not informed of his mission and he was not aware of Mr. Wilson’s mission until recent press accounts—press reports accounted for it.[1]

    Fleischer testified in open court on January 29, 2007, that Libby told him on July 7, 2003, at lunch, about Ms. Plame, who is Mr. Wilson’s wife. MSNBC correspondent David Shuster summarized Fleisher’s testimony on Hardball with Chris Matthews:
    “ “Ambassador Wilson was sent to Niger by his wife. His wife works at the CIA,” Fleischer recalled Libby saying. Libby said the information was “hush-hush, on the Q-T.”

    He testified that “The information about Wilson’s wife was news to me. It was the first time I had ever heard it.”[2]

    Fleischer also testified to the fact that Dan Bartlett, the president’s communications adviser, told him the same thing on Air Force One days later on the way to Niger with Pres. Bush. Fleischer had then relayed this information to Time correspondent John Dickerson and NBC’s David Gregory in Uganda during the African trip.[3][4

    • maryo2 says:

      Libby telling Fletcher and then Dan Bartlett, the president’s communications adviser, telling him the same thing days later means that Cheney and Libby escalated the need to “get the facts out” to Bush and his office. Bush must have told Bartlett to tell Fletcher this.

      Or is is reasonable to think that Cheney tells Bush’s communication advisor what to do? I don’t think it is reasonable. Therefore Bush was involved.

  8. Leen says:

    I was able to attend the Libby trial for a few days and this is one of the scenes I remember best. When Fitz would stand you could feel the electricity moving through the courtroom.

    This slate article describes it best

    “When he settled down, Wells tried to match the clarity of the prosecution case with his own narrative. “It’s a case about different recollections between Mr. Libby and some reporters,” he said. In other words, a classic “he said/she said.” That gambit shaved away five of the prosecution witnesses who had contradicted Libby—the nonjournalists. “There’s a craziness to this case,” Wells also asserted, contending it was “madness” to try to convict Libby of a crime based on his foggy memory about fragments of conversations three and four months after they took place. Slim evidence, and potentially dire consequences. “My client’s life would be destroyed” if he were convicted, Wells said.

    Next, the defense team spent the bulk of its three hours trying to dismantle the testimony of the three journalists, Matt Cooper, Judith Miller, and Tim Russert. Wells said their accounts had been as fuzzy as Libby’s and that the trial had become a lesson in the faultiness of memory. “What witness in here didn’t get something wrong? What witness?” Russert took a particular pounding, as Wells listed every inconsistency in his testimony. He read from an editorial by Russert’s hometown paper that said the Meet the Press star suffered “public memory lapses” after he forgot a conversation with one of its reporters. “Do not convict Scooter Libby on the word of somebody who suffers public memory lapses,” Wells urged the jury. Then he moved to emotion. “He is a good person,” he said of Libby, beginning to break up. “He has been under my protection for a month. I give him to you. Give him back to me. Give him back to me.” He ended in tears.

    After the break, Fitzgerald did his best Wells impression. Just because the defense was “saying it loudly and pounding on the table,” didn’t mean its story was true. It wasn’t a he-said/she-said case,” he argued, “it is a he-said, he-said, she-said, he-said, he-said, she-said, he-said, he-said, he-said.” With each reiteration, he pointed to the pictures on his big slide. Could all of these people be mistaken in their recollections about Libby? “Is this the world’s greatest coincidence?” he asked.”

    #### I almost laughed out loud when Wells asked the Jury to give Libby back to him. That was a pathetic performance.

  9. FrankProbst says:

    Hmmm. Here’s my take.

    The Big Picture: Scott McClellan was the public face of the Bush White House for several years. All of that video is going to go into an archive somewhere, and 50 years from now, when PhD students are replaying the tapes, they’re going to be shaking their heads and saying “Bullshit!” over and over and over. McClellan needs to put his official spin on this to try not to look like the most inept White House spokesman in history.

    The Plame affair: From a reality-based perspective, I don’t think this adds much to the story. I tend to believe that McClellan was used by Rove, Libby, and Cheney, and that he really didn’t know that they were behind all of this. But if he DID know, I wouldn’t expect him to admit it, so it’s kind of a wash. I doubt the fact that Libby and Rove had a meeting is as significant as McClellan makes it out to be. I would believe either one of them if they said, “We never told Scott McClellan about it, but the two of us having a weekly standing meeting so that we can get together and torture kittens.”

    On the other hand, try to look at it from the perspective of a 28%er: The official story is that poor Libby is a hard-working aide who got in trouble for “misremembering” a few conversations, and Karl Rove is a tactical genius who is vilified by the left because we hate his brilliance at winning elections. Now you have McClellan, the inside man, coming forward and saying: No, they’re both liars. And Dick Cheney was probably in on it, too.

    That’s big news, even it’s not something that’s going to hold up in court. What I’m really interested in is what happened between the press blurb and the book publication. McClellan has pretty much said that Rove got in touch with him after the blurb came out. I’m dying to know what the two of them actually said to each other. Regardless of what it was, it doesn’t look like McClellan was overly inclined to cover Rove’s ass.

  10. Leen says:

    Fitz after the verdict “He’s put the doubt into whatever happened that week, whatever is going on between the Vice President and the defendant, that cloud was there. That’s not something that we put there. That cloud is something that we just can’t pretend isn’t there.”

    Cheney still under the clouds?

    Who else did Fitz immunize besides Ari Fleisher? Is Fitz done?

    • FrankProbst says:

      Is Fitz done?

      Yes and no. Marcy thinks (and I agree, for what that’s worth) that Fitz doesn’t have any hole cards on the Plame case that he’s waiting to play. (M’lady, feel free to edit if I’m misrepresenting you here.) That’s the “yes” part.

      The “no” part is that, in the Rezko trial, Fitz has several people who have said, under oath, that Rove was telling people that he was going to get Fitz fired. Thus far, it’s all been hearsay (i.e. no one has testified that they actually HEARD Rove say this, only that SOMEONE ELSE told them that Rove had said it), but Fitz’s team is slowly rolling up little fish in that case, and Rezko himself might be convicted and/or flip. Odds are strong that SOMEONE is going to cut a deal, and that could easily put Rove on the hook for obstruction of justice.

      • emptywheel says:

        No edits whatsoever. That about covers it.

        One more detail: either Rezko or Kjellander are candidates to flip–Kjellander is probably the one with the better testimony against our little Turdblossom.

        • LS says:

          Oh…please, please, please…

          We’ve been at this rodeo before…please make this one different…please…

      • Muzzy says:

        and re EW @ 32, Could Kjeelander or Rezko implicate Rove for obstruction by ‘talking’ about getting rid of Fitzgerald even if nothing occurred to that effect? The range of material Rove could have discussed with them, absent action, otherwise seems that it would have been limited.

        • emptywheel says:

          The thing is, Kjellander would be able (presumably) to testify that Rove said he was working on getting Fitz fired.

          We know that Fitz’ name showed up on a firing list in early 2005–in spite of the fact that he had gotten excellent reviews.

          So we’ve got more than the evidence that Kjellander was talking to Rove about it. We’ve got evidence BushCO was considering it.

          • bmaz says:

            And, IIRC a couple of otherwise insiders admitting that they have no idea how or why Fitz’s name could have been so considered.

            • strider7 says:

              See, you should’ve got Scottie’s brother,Markie to help you with your “Twinky/Aspartame” defense

  11. TeddySanFran says:

    Scotty’s still a cool kid, though — or at least the Secret Service thought he thought he was:

    • “‘Matrix’ was the code name the Secret Service used for the White House press secretary.”

    • cbl2 says:

      and all this time I thought it was Pop ‘n Fresh – the Spillsbury ButtBoy

      hey Empty and Firedogs –

  12. rwcole says:

    Is there any possibility at all- even a distant one- that Rove will find his ass in jail some day?

  13. emptywheel says:

    Nice touch with Mike Allen trying to downplay the fact that Libby and Rove were two of the four leakers:

    At Libby’s trial, testimony showed the two had talked with reporters about the officer, however elliptically.

    Still trying to make up for the 1X2X6 scoop, Mike? Neither Rove nor (especially) Libby’s comments about Plame were “elliptical.”

    • FrankProbst says:

      Neither Rove nor (especially) Libby’s comments about Plame were “elliptical.”

      “His wife is . . . a CIA agent!”

    • bmaz says:

      Heh watching a replay of that now on Anderson Cooper/CNN. Allen, Franny Frag and Ed Henry; what a hard hitting panel. Or not. Jeebus.

  14. sadlyyes says:

    Foreclosures in Military Towns Surge at Four Times U.S. Rate

    By Kathleen M. Howley
    More Photos/Details

    May 27 (Bloomberg) — U.S. Air Force Technical Sergeant Jeffrey VerSteegh, who repairs F-16 jets for the 132nd Fighter Wing, departed Des Moines, Iowa, in April for his third tour in Iraq. The father of four may lose his home when he returns.

    The four-bedroom farmhouse he and his wife, Kathleen, own near the Iowa State Fairgrounds went into default in December after their monthly mortgage costs doubled to $1,100. Kathleen missed work because of breast cancer and they struggled to keep up the house payment, falling behind on other bills. Their bankruptcy was approved by the court a week after VerSteegh left for Iraq.

    In the midst of the worst surge in mortgage defaults in seven decades, foreclosures in U.S. towns where soldiers live are increasing at a pace almost four times the national average, according to data compiled by research firm RealtyTrac Inc. in Irvine, California. As military families like the VerSteeghs signed up for the initial lower rates and easier terms of subprime mortgages, the number of people taking out Veterans Administration loans fell to the lowest in at least 12 years.

    • Petrocelli says:

      Dubya must be so proud to outdo Pappy … the first Gulf War saw my cousin, a Sergeant, fighting for his country while his family was put on the street when their home was foreclosed …

  15. Bustednuckles says:

    Busted hearts Marcy!

    I have so missed your regular insights into this matter.

    In my usual plain, crude language, Fuck ‘Em All.
    Scotty damn well knew he was lying to the American people as it’s official spokesperson and Rove, Libby, Darth and Stupie are trying to cover up Treason.
    I’m not forgetting Joke Line and SEVERAL other high level government officials in my condemnation, either., Looking at YOU, Judy.

  16. LS says:

    Rove tonight on Fox:

    “Said Rove: “That just goes to show you how out of the loop he was.”

    Ummmm….about that “loop”…….?????

    • hackworth says:

      Reflects well on Dubya to have a press secretary that Sour Grapes Rove slimes with out of the loop. Have all of them – Ari, Matrix, Snow, Blondie, been out of the loop? They all lie(d) like hell and tried to make ice cream out of shit. They couldn’t possibly be out of the loop all the time.

      • Bustednuckles says:

        I don’t know about that.
        I f I knew I had been screwing chickens in an official capacity, I think maybe I’d be less than forthcoming with an accurate account of my time and activities to the spokesperson for that entity.

      • LS says:

        They are compartmentalized.

        But, “the loop” is an even more particular group really “in the know”…W, VP, Libby, Rove….and, of course, Addington, Gonzalez, Fielding, and Miers. Just my guess.

      • madmommy says:

        It does make it much easier to regurgitate the day’s talking points if you have no idea what’s really going on. It really wouldn’t surprise me atall if the press secretary is left in the dark about a lot of stuff. Plausable deniability and all that rot.

    • Leen says:

      Somehow I really thought that Fitz meant what he said during his first press conference having to do with the Libby trial

      Fitz “The truth is the engine of our judicial system. If you compromise the truth, the whole process is lost … if we were to walk away from this, we might as well hand in our jobs.”

      “you may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one”

    • FrankProbst says:

      Fitz wasn’t about ta go toe ta toe with the White House then- nor is he now.

      Um, he convicted the #4 man in the White House of four felonies, which forced Bush to commute a prison sentence for one of his top aides. And at that point, even the presiding judge called bullshit. It was bald-faced obstruction of justice, and Bush should have been impeached for it. Fitz went toe to toe with the White House and won. It’s Congress that didn’t have the guts to do its job.

      • rwcole says:

        Would have shown me more hair had he indicted Rove- and Libby as well on the original charge of outing a spy..Yeah- it’s a tough law- and he would probably have lost- but the truth might have come out.

  17. RevDeb says:

    don’t want to intrude on Plameology but Matt Taibi is going to be the gues on TDS. There seems to not be a late night post yet so those wanting to riff on TDS “off site” can go herewhile remaining on the thread.

    • peony says:

      Right, or why else is he blabbing in public in the media. It looks to me like he’s going to get his…the wrathful deities are lining up.

  18. wobblybits says:

    I figured sooner or later this house of cards would start collapsing in on itself as there is no honor among thieves.

  19. LS says:

    I get the feeling that Rove’s remarks about cooperating with Congress on “his” terms is really, really almost incriminating. JMHO. Why not just show up and say, I don’t recall or something…just to protect the unitary executive theory, is that it?

  20. LS says:

    So, if Scottie wasn’t in Rove’s “loop”, who was? That doesn’t leave too many players does it?

  21. LS says:

    Fitz has indicated that he closed the Plame investigation…right? Now, Rove smugly claims that McClellan was not “in the loop”…did Fitz do that on purpose to make Rove feel comfortable in bragging about his exclusive knowledge…? Just sayin? Is that a tactic on Fitz’s part….or am I just full of BS and barking up the wrong tree?? Rove seems to be asserting that he knows something because he’s in a “special” circle that even Scottie was excluded from. Rove is all puffed up and emboldened all of a sudden it seems.

  22. amilius says:

    Given the context of Mike Allen reviewing a book about a time when he was in the press corps with compatriot Harris, does this mean we are now to believe these guys are no longer wearing knee pads when called upon to service the White House? Hard to believe…

      • TeddySanFran says:

        The term ballwasher was invented for Mike Allen.

        Remember the press conference when W called on him just after he’d “jumped ship” to Politico?

        As if.

  23. LS says:

    Doesn’t anybody think that if Rove says on national teevee that McClellan was out of the loop, in a flippant manner, that the loop was deliberately hiding something from him? Why? What was to hide?

    • bmaz says:

      The “out of the loop” crap, which was also word for word the line used by Franny Frag Townsend on CNN, is a mindless ruse. We all know the story now, even the press, it is what it is, and McClellen, whether he was in a loop or not, is stating the obvious now. The loop bit is freaking nonsense.

        • bmaz says:

          Heh, if I came off harsh, I didn’t mean to; I was getting ready to write that already before I saw your question. I have now seen three different Administration shills spout the “out of the loop” line, it is clearly a talking point. And a stupid one at that. Irrespective of whether he was outside the loop then, we all know the contours of the truth now. Screw the loop, Karl, Townsend and the rest of the shills should say what is false about what McClellen said; they can’t, that is why they are peddling this bunk.

          Teddy @90 – He’s a polisher alright; might be the source of his stuttering….

      • TeddySanFran says:

        Where have we heard that “out of the loop” before, anyway?

        Oh, yeah — Poppy and Iran/Contra. Funny, that.

  24. strider7 says:

    Ther’s a great article at Sic Semper Tyrannis by Phil Habakkuk called “Sible Edmonds 2″ that goes into Valeries’ involvement with Brewster Jennings as a front for her undercover work on nukes.Also another on BAE that’s great.
    You have to link to Habukkuks’ work

  25. njr83 says:

    Tucker Carlson on msnbc tonight
    McClellan is the only person in Washington less eloquent than Bush
    I’m dying to know who his ghost writer was

  26. BlueStateRedHead says:

    Hello from the BlueBayState. I need a Texan explanation of how Scotty can square his ‘turning his back’ on Bush with his family heritage, or does the family heritage have his back as he turns, or some third tin foil hattery explanation of an apparent no real turning which beyond my capacities now that hang with the primary-obsessed types elsewhere.
    BTW, if anyone misses football, there’s this to kick around

    Former NFL Player Organizes Support for Barack…..lin/gGCMzs…..ellan.html

    White House Press Secretary
    Scott McClellan

    September 16, 2003

    Scott McClellan
    White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan

    Scott McClellan is the White House press secretary; having promoted to replace Ari Fleischer as press secretary after he left the post on July 14, 2003. Previously he served as Deputy White House press secretary, Fleischer’s assistant.

    McClellan, 35, began working for President Bush, in 1999 as the deputy communications director, when Bush was the governor of Texas. He served as the traveling press secretary during the 2000 Presidential Campaign.

    McClellan comes from a Texas political family. His mother, Carole Keeton Strayhorn, is the Texas state comptroller. and former mayor of Austin. McClellan is a three-time campaign manager for his mother.

    His brother, Mark McClellan, the oldest of Scott’s three brothers and now commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration and a former adviser to Bush.

    His grandfather was the law school dean at the University of Texas

    • bmaz says:

      Hey BSRH, long time little see. Could just be a fourth possibility, wants to cash in while he can, and this is about it for McClellen, he doesn’t look to have the traits to fit in in the usual wingnut welfare niches. Plus a little bit of payback. I haven’t seen anything yet that hits Bush himself that hard, in fact McClellen seems to pitch the “not served well by advisors” bit of excuse making.

      • BlueStateRedHead says:

        Nice to see you too. Change of subject if I may act a for some advice needed to get around the Indiana voter id law from someone who has been through the voter id rigmarole—you!

        I am doing research for an elderly woman in Indiana who has been previously divorced 3 times and was unable to vote in the primaries because of name discrepancies. She has her most recent divorce papers, but not the imediately previous one, which is required. Said papers are in Chicago, but she is elderly plus can’t afford the gas to drive from Indianapolis to Chicago to retrieve said papers. Does she have any other options? Can Dem/BO campaign legally help her if presence in Chicago is required?

        I know this is divorce, not crime (well the law is criminalish, but the SCOTUS thght otherwise) but all my lawyer friends do real estate, trusts, and corporate deals etc. so I thought I wld ask the lawyer ‘friend’ –and you have been very kind, even to my Red Sox– who does the ‘roll up your sleeves’kind of law.

        If the answer is ‘don’t know’, I’ll move on.

  27. freepatriot says:

    speaking of buying books bout scottie

    is it still possible to get an autographed copy of your masterwork ew ???

    still got a connection with your local bookstore ???

  28. Pat2 says:

    Please note Karl Rove’s aired response to McClellan’s description of the “unusual” meeting between just Rove and Scooter Libby:

    Rove said he and Libby met all the time. He did not say, however, that the two regularly met privately.

    It’s the private aspect that McClellan was highlighting — that the two were in cahoots in getting their Valerie Plame stories to match. Rove conveniently ignored that part.

    More parsing, more mincing.

  29. Mary says:

    20 – Heh. That was one of the two things in the politico piece that jumped out at me too. The other was the headline that listed who McClellan went after, but left out the press (although he does put that in later).

    And McClellan just sounds like a forlorn groupie to me. Bush is “authentic” and “sincere” but also goes around convincing himself of whatever is most politically convenient to believe and won’t engage in even minimalist candor. And the everblooming *Bush was badly served by his advisors* schmaltz

  30. mui1 says:

    Hmmm, how to read the book, but not make Scottie rich? Instead of buying Scottie boy’s grand opus, I suggest people try as much to browse at the bookstore and the library. Libraries will have to buy the book due to library policy if it hits the bestseller lists, but if the book is in too much demand, the library will have to buy xtra copies.

    I have no idea what they discussed, but it seemed suspicious for these two, whom I had never noticed spending any one-on-one time together, to go behind closed doors and visit privately. … At least one of them, Rove, it was publicly known at the time, had at best misled me by not sharing relevant information, and credible rumors were spreading that the other, Libby, had done at least as much. …

    I always thought Scottie was gratuitously fatuous or fatuously gratuitous, can’t make up my mind. he’s always doing a gee-whiz act. I feel inclined to read the above passage with wide eyes and a gee-whiz finger pointed at my cheek. Who’s the ghostwriter anyway. When I sniff those passages I imagine editorial interpolations all over the place. Maybe I am wrong
    But the book should be interesting.

  31. maryo2 says:

    Looking back at Scottie’s resignation, he doesn’t seem disgruntled. The White House said it was just part of the new Chief of Staff’s, Josh Bolten’s, restructuring and a good time for Scottie to leave after 2 years and nine months on a difficult job.

  32. bmaz says:

    Just Received From Congressman Robert Wexler:

    Last night, significant news broke that directly impacts our push for Impeachment Hearings and a possible Inherent Contempt charge for Bush Administration officials such as Karl Rove:

    Former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan has revealed in his upcoming book that:

    • Karl Rove, Scooter Libby, and Vice President Cheney lied about their role in revealing the identity of Valerie Plame Wilson – actions easily amounting to obstruction of Justice.

    McClellan also admitted that:

    • There was a coordinated effort within the Bush Administration to use propaganda to pump up the case for the Iraq war and hide the projected costs of the war from the public.

    Scott McClellan must be called to testify under oath before the House Judiciary Committee to tell Congress and the American people everything he knows about this massive effort by the White House to deceive this nation into war.

    Last week, a subpoena was issued for Karl Rove to testify before the Judiciary Committee. It appears he will take every legal action to block this subpoena. The truth is that Congress has the right – and obligation – to hold him accountable now – not months or years from now. It is long past time to pass Inherent Contempt and bring Rove, Libby and others before Congress.

    We simply cannot ignore these recent developments, nor should we postpone serious inquiry until after the next election.

    Your commitment to accountability for the Bush/Cheney Administration, and the support of 230,000 other Americans who signed up at, has inspired and motivated me in my effort to hold impeachment hearings for Vice President Dick Cheney and Inherent Contempt for Rove and others. During the past months I have been a tireless and dogged advocate of this vitally important cause.

    Many of you have written me, asking for an update on where we stand with regards to impeachment hearings. I know most of you believe – as I do – that impeachment hearings for Vice President Cheney – are not only justified, but that it is our constitutional obligation to look into the serious allegations of wrongdoing that have been raised. This is especially true based on the newest revelations from Scott McClellan.

    I believe that it is the duty of Congress to pursue impeachment whenever there’s significant evidence of wrongdoing, be it by Republicans or Democrats, regardless of the timing of elections or the current political environment.

    Some of you have written me demanding that I deliver hearings or impeachment. As hard as I have been fighting for this cause, I cannot make impeachment happen by myself. What I can do, and what I have been doing at every turn, is trying to communicate two simple messages to my colleagues:

    • the serious allegations of wrongdoing and the clear-cut rationale for impeachment hearings;and
    • the fact that the public will support our efforts when Congress boldly acts on the side of justice and accountability.

    Unfortunately, to date, these arguments have not been enough to convince even a majority of the liberal and progressive Members of Congress to support impeachment hearings. In addition, the leadership of the Democratic Party in Congress genuinely feels that pursuing impeachment will jeopardize our congressional agenda and threaten gains in the November elections. Although I genuinely disagree with this view, to date I have been unable to convince them to change this policy.

    I understand the challenges that we are up against, and I recognize the odds that we face. Nevertheless, I remain unfazed and unyielding.

    This new evidence from Scott McClellan could be the tipping point – but we must move quickly. I will use the McClellan admissions to help convince my colleagues that we must hold impeachment hearings.

    Regardless, I will continue to fight for progressive values and our Constitution. I will do everything I can to pursue accountability for criminal actions taken by this Administration and this Vice President. I will be a furious opponent to any expansion of this misguided war, and I will fight against the use of torture by our government and to protect our civil liberties here at home.

    Most of all, I will continue my efforts to convince my fellow members of Congress and voters, that we should not be a party of passivity – but that we succeed when we present the public with stark choices that are based on the guarantees in our Constitution, and not on the politics of the moment.

    I will continue – at every pass – to call for impeachment and accountability. While I wish more of my colleagues supported our movement, we must not let our discouragement lead to apathy and distraction in this important election year when we must break free from eight long years of illegalities, corporate handouts, and a tragic and devastating war.

    We should not end the calls for impeachment. I will push against the crimes of the Bush Administration whenever I am provided the opportunity. I will use my role on the Judiciary Committee to take on Administration officials – like I have done with Condoleezza Rice, Attorney Generals Gonzalez and Mukasey, and FBI Director Mueller.

    I have not given up our fight to hold this Administration accountable and neither can you. I am grateful for your patriotism and your support. I’ll continue to keep you informed and part of the conversation.


    Congressman Robert Wexler

    • bobschacht says:

      Re Wexler letter:
      My Congressperson, Neil Abercrombie, is one of the signatories to Wexler’s letter advocating that impeachment hearings begin.

      Bob in HI

    • Leen says:

      Thank you Congressman Wexler. There is still time to give impeachment a chance. So telling that Pelosi and Reid are more concerned about the “congressional agenda” than doing what is right…how can they possibly not get it..the American public is starving for justice in regard to the lies repeated in the run up to this unnecessary and immoral war.

      Before the invasion I still clearly remember the endless list of experts and people more in the know who were verifying that the Niger documents were false (Iaea’s El Baradei) and questioning the validity of the intellignence, (Scott Ritter, Kofi Anan, Zbigniew Brezinski, General Swarzkopf, General Zinni, Madeline Albright, Jimmy Carter, 22 Senators, I forget how many Congresspeople who were lead by Congressman Kucinich). And yet the Bush administration filled the air waves with “mushroom clouds, smoking guns, that Saddam, might ,could have, is dreaming, will, should, moved, did, is likely,” to have WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION. The fearmongering was endless.

      At least 3 million in the U.S. marched before the invasion, 30 million marched against the invasion world wide. Still they went, based on false intelligence. The very least our Reps owe the 4000 Americans who have needlessly died, the over 30,ooo injured, the million Iraqi people who have died and the 4 million Iraqi refugees is to hold these murderers ACCOUNTABLE. This is the very least our REPS can do!

  33. Mary says:

    126 – I still wish someone would get around to asking Fitzgerald, after his representations that his mandate could be revoked or modififed at any time, if there were any such revocations or modifications. It would just clear a deck for me.

    Wexler has been one of the good guys.

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