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"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." Theodore Roosevelt


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Sunday, October 30, 2005

Talking Points

The predominant talking point for Bush loyalists in response to Libby's indictment charges not being of the substantive crime are typified by the following comment to a recent post:
Not only was there no charges against outing a covert CIA agent, Fitzgerald has made a follow up statement making it clear nothing of the sort was claimed in the indictments.
Let's review Fitzgerald's explanation on the nature of the charges, and more specifically why Libby was not indicted on any leak charges:

What we have when someone charges obstruction of justice, the umpire gets sand thrown in his eyes. He's trying to figure what happened and somebody blocked their view.

As you sit here now, if you're asking me what his motives were, I can't tell you; we haven't charged it.

So what you were saying is the harm in an obstruction investigation is it prevents us from making the fine judgments we want to make.

I also want to take away from the notion that somehow we should take an obstruction charge less seriously than a leak charge.

This is a very serious matter and compromising national security information is a very serious matter. But the need to get to the bottom of what happened and whether national security was compromised by inadvertence, by recklessness, by maliciousness is extremely important. We need to know the truth. And anyone who would go into a grand jury and lie, obstruct and impede the investigation has committed a serious crime.

Could it not be any clearer? Libby was not charged with the outing of a covert agent, not because the investigator did not see evidence of the leak, but because the suspect blocked the investigator from understanding the motives of the crime. Libby obstructed justice on an issue of national security. And the question everyone should be asking regardless of political bent is why. Or more to the point, who. Who is he protecting?

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