Judy, Pinch and a Boy Named Scooter
In a furious bout of post-prison housecleaning, Judy Miller just “happened” to find notes today from June 2003 when she spoke with Scooter Libby about Joe Wilson.
Of all the amazing discoveries. She’s the fucking Indiana Jones of dust bunnies, that one.
I keep coming back to the September 15 letter (PDF) from Scooter Libby to Judy Miller, kind of like a scab you just can’t help picking at.
1. In Patrick Fitzgerald’s “leaked” letter of September 12, 2005 (PDF) to Libby’s lawyer, Joseph Tate, he runs down the facts as told to him by Libby:
Mr. Libby has discussed a meeting with Ms. Miller on July 8 2003, at the St. Regis Hotel and a later conversation between Mr. Libby and Ms. Miller by telephone in the late afternoon of July 12, 2003. Mr. Libby has described his recollection of the substance of those two conversations, without limitation.
Libby was most probably quoting the party line that everyone else was testifying to — namely, that whatever was done to Joe Wilson came in response to his July 6, 2003 editorial in the New York Times entitled What I Didn’t Find in Africa. They weren’t trying to smear him, doncha know — they were just providing appropriate counterbalance to what he was saying, trying to helpfully provide the press with some mitigating factors.
Thus began the Rove as Whistleblower meme we all remember with so much fondness.
2. Joe Wilson, in his book and elsewhere, has long maintained that the White House Iraq Group — whose notes and records Fitzgerald has subpoenaed — did a workup of him in March, before his editorial was ever published. As early as his October 13, 2002 article in the San Jose Mercury News, Wilson was calling ’em all a bunch of hosebags. He had been flying in their radar for a while.
3. When Libby wrote his sodden mash note to Judy it seems to me that he was quite obviously trying to hip her to the fact that it was okay to talk about anything that happened in July:
The Special Counsel identified every reporter with whom I had spoken about anything in July 2003, including you. My counsel then called counsel for each of the reporters, including yours, and confirmed that my waiver was voluntary.
Translation: It’s okay for you to talk about July meetings but nothing else.
Judy Miller was sitting in fucking prison on tenterhooks. She’s had plenty of time to think about each and every time she met with poor lovestruck Aspen-riddled Scooter, and what the implications were of each and every one of those meetings along the way. She didn’t fucking “forget” an entire month there looped on pruno. Scooter let her know what she could say. And she probably complied.
4. If Libby was lying, he did not believe that there was anything provided to Fitzgerald that was going to contradict what he had to say, like — oh — the minutes of the White House Iraq Group, or the testimony of those in WHIG, including Karen Hughes, Mary Matalin, Condi Rice, Stephen Hadley, James Wilkinson and Nicholas Cailo, in addition to the Rove man himself.
5. On Thursday, September 29, when Judy agrees to testify, Fitzgerald goes to the slam and spends a little quality time with her, just to get her story down before she goes and has a steak with Pinch. (Does she have a thing for men with awful names or what?)
That night, Fitzgerald calls up Joe Wilson, and confirms what he probably already knew one way or another — Judy and Scooter were talking as early as June, contrary to what both were saying.
(Emptywheel has penned a nifty little dramatization of this particular sequence of events. Highly recommended, Oscar-caliber stuff. Considering the skeevy characters involved, we applaud her for leaving out the sex scenes.)
6. Suddenly Judy REMEMBERS her earlier “notes” and meeting with Scooter. I’m guessing the dog didn’t just barf ’em up — her attorney probably got a helpful memory-prodding phonecall from Fitzgerald, who probably knew Judy was going to lie her lying face off all along.
7. Suddenly — VOILA! — a SLEW of people want to come in and spend quality time with Fitzgerald and the grand jury again. They are VOLUNTEERING. Because, as you know, testifying before Fitzgerald’s grand jury is all the rage in DC these days, and everyone needs a hobby.
I will leap to the presumption that the “we were just reacting to Joe Wilson’s editorial” group bullshit is falling apart faster than a cheap thong in a hot dryer. It’s hard to know just how much sleight-of-hand went into perpetuating this particular lie, but I will wager no small amount.
Note to self: do not EVER play poker with Patrick Fitzgerald.
(hat tip to Mrs. K8)
(cross-posted at Hullabaloo)