"Official A[sshole Rove] still twisting slowly, slowly in the wind
What a shame. It couldn't happen to a nicer traitor. However, as Kristof points out, the suspense is bad for the country. So why doesn't Rove just give up the unequal struggle, resign, and make Babs happy? Who knows....
Anyhow, despite the massive autocacaphagy fest from the Sabbath Day gasbags, how everything in the White House is all pure because, you know, only one bad apple was charged with a felony, it's still not looking so good for America's favorite College Republican. Pravda on the Potomac:
Rove's attorney provided Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald with a last-minute flurry of material and evidence supporting Rove's contention that he simply forgot his conversation about Wilson's wife with Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper -- rather than lied about it, according to people close to Rove.
Excellent. As Xan says, if the best Rove can do is the "I forgot" defense, we can lay in more champers. I mean, what next? Barney ate my notes?
The sources said it gave Fitzgerald "pause" about his earlier intentions to charge Rove with false statements to the FBI, and he agreed to continue investigating.
Even more excellent. I'm more than happy to have Fitzgerald continue to investigate Rove. Very thoroughtly. Until, say, 2006.
But two legal sources intimately familiar with Fitzgerald's tactics in this inquiry said they believe Rove remains in significant danger. They described Fitzgerald as being relentlessly thorough but also conservative throughout this prosecution -- and his willingness to consider Rove's eleventh-hour pleading of a memory lapse is merely a sign of Fitzgerald's caution.
The two legal sources point to what they consider Fitzgerald's careful decision not to charge Libby with the leak of a covert agent's identity, given that the prosecutor had amassed considerable evidence that Libby gave classified information, which he knew from his job should not be made public, to reporters. Another prosecutor might have stretched to make a leak charge, on the theory that a jury would believe, based on other actions, that Libby acted with bad intentions.
Another warning sign for Rove was in the phrasing of Friday's indictment of Libby. Fitzgerald referred to Rove in those charging papers as a senior White House official and dubbed him "Official A." In prosecutorial parlance, this kind of awkward pseudonym is often used for individuals who have not been indicted in a case but still face a significant chance of being charged. No other official in the investigation carries such an identifier.
And, as chicagodyke reminds us, Fitzgerald has used the "Official A" pseudonym for officials he later did indict.
So there remain many unanswered questions, and all of them are good for the country (i.e., bad for Bush):
1. Can Rove continue as Acting President even after it's revealed that he's Official A, and that he outed Plame?
2. Will Scooter flip?
3. Will Rove be indicted?
4. Will Cheney be an unindicted co-conspirator?
5. Will Cheney be indicted?
6. What did Bush know and when did he know it?
I know getting these guys indicted is just a small thing. Getting a functional opposition party would be a bigger thing. Having a winning alternative to the Republicans would be even bigger and better than that. Some measure of justice and dignity for ordinary Americans would be bigger and better still.
But we have to start somewhere, and I'd rather have the criminals in the outlaw Republican regime spending all their waking hours getting themselves lawyered up and trying to figure out how to betray each other than undertaking more damaging enterprises like, say, invading Syria. The country's safer that way.
Pass the popcorn!