Too Many Lies About Torture To Keep Straight
Lott appeared to tell the reporters that the source on the secret prisons in Eastern Europe came from a Senate Republican who had been at the Nov. 1 luncheon. CNN reported Lott's remarks citing a fellow Senator as the leak on the Nov. 2 story, as did at other news organizations, including Roll Call and Congressional Quarterly.
But it was clearly impossible for a Senator to have been the initial source, since that meeting broke up after 2 p.m. and the secret-prison story -- a more than 2,800-word opus which included sources in intelligence communities around the globe -- was filed and slapped down in the next day's paper.
Instead, Lott was really complaining about a different Post story, one that ran Monday, that focused on Cheney's role in trying to defeat an anti-torture amendment sponsored by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).
Initially on Wednesday, Lott blamed CNN for misreporting or misunderstanding his comments Tuesday. Told that several other reporters heard the same thing, Lott said it's possible that they also misunderstood him or that he was answering a question about the Nov. 7 story and the reporters thought he was talking about the Nov. 2 story.
"Two separate issues, they got tangled up," Lott explained.