Saturday, April 15, 2006

The finessing of Plamegate

This is a pretty good analysis (or here) of how the Bush White House finessed the whole problem it had with the outing of Valerie Plame.  Remember that Bush and Cheney were not under oath when they had their little ‘chat’ with Fitzgerald.  The niceties of what authority Cheney had or didn’t have to declassify documents aren’t going to be enough to build a criminal case, and everybody – except Libby who had to lie to protect the 2004 election – will be off the hook.

I disagree with the author that Libby has been ‘hung out to dry’.  The understanding between Libby and the White House seems to be that Libby can do whatever he can to get off on a technicality.  If he is convicted anyway, Bush will pardon him.  All Libby’s lawyers have to do is manage the timing of the case so that Libby doesn’t actually have to report to a jail before Bush pardons him in December 2008.