Sunday, July 10, 2005

One Thing We Know For Sure: Rove Was A (The?) Source

In Newsweek, Michael Isikoff finally nails down a few things on the Rove/Plame affair, thanks to a copy of an internal e-mail. Rove was definitely Matt Cooper's source (at least, one of them), and he definitely referred to Wilson's wife in pooh-poohing Wilson's Nigerian 'revelations'. That's the bad news for Rove. The good news, as Mickey Kaus says, is that the contents of the e-mail seem to back up the version that, (1) he did not mention her by name, and (2) he very well may not have known that she was an agent whose identity was being protected by 'affirmative measures'. Here's Kaus:
Without identifying her by name, Rove mentioned Wilson's wife's employment but did so in order to get reporters to pay less attention to Wilson's report, not (at least on the surface) in order to blow Plame's cover or retailiate against Wilson (and "stifle dissent"). ... Does that get Rove off the legal hook? I think it should--if Rove didn't intend the info to become public and trusted the reporters he talked with to be responsible. Rove's problem is that the statute doesn't seem to require an intent for the info to become public for there to be a crime; it only requires an act of disclosure.
Emphasis his. In other words, Rove can breathe a bit easier, but it's not time to relaxe completely yet. There may also be the possibility that he's being pursued for perjury, as well...

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