More Scooter Blues
Since others have referenced it, I thought I’d transcribe exactly what John Dean had to say on Countdown last night (you can see it for yourself at Crooks & Liars):
OLBERMANN: There’s only one Vice President, and he is mentioned by title if not by name. Is that the end of the damage this will do to him, or as you suggested could the whole thing be boiling down here to Mr. Libby at some point having decided to protect him and could this reference in this indictment be a kind of wormhole to some future investigation of the Vice President?
DEAN Well clearly Scooter Libby is the firewall for Dick Cheney at this point. I don’t think they could go very far on any further investigation unless Mr. Libby were to change his mind and start talking about only things that he would know and was privy to with relation to the Vice President. I have no indication that he would do so, it may well be this is an effort by the Special Counsel to put some pressure on Mr. Libby to see how much heat that firewall will take, because he’s got it on him right now.
Will Scooter bow to the pressure and give up Big Dick? Hard to say. But Josh Marshall has more on what Fitzgerald could hope to hear from Scooter. Citing Paragraphs 22-24 of the indictments (PDF), which state that Libby talked with "other officials" about what he should say about Joe Wilson in response to media inquiries, one of his readers connects the dots to a New York Times article from the same period which indicates that Cheney did, indeed, take part in these conversations that Fitzgerald is hoping to use against Libby.
Nicely done, we might add.
Update: Commenter Susan S. points us over to the BooMan Tribune, where lawyer and former SEC official Marty Ausssenberg has this to say:
[T]he real reason to lay out as much factual detail as he did was for Fitz to show the world (and in particular, the world within the White House) that he has the goods, and that he won’t hesitate to drop the dime on some additional malefactors, particularly, Cheney. Let’s face it: Libby is only the consigliere to Cheney’s don. Even though the threat of spending 30 years in the pokey will be a powerful incentive for Libby to cut some kind of deal that might include turning on his boss, the possibility of the additional charges of revealing classified information, particularly against Cheney, is even more powerful since, presumably, Cheney does’t appear to be at risk of a truth-telling-related indictment.
Let’s agree on something else right now: Libby’s case will never get to trial, primarily because Bush and Cheney will never allow such a trial to become precisely the kind of exposé of the administration’s motives and actions in the run-up to the war they were worried the indictments would constitute. It would be their worst nightmare to have their war machinations presented to a jury of 12 ordinary citizens in the District of Columbia (read: predominantly African Americans) who would be sitting as proxies for the families of 2,000 plus military fatalities in Iraq and the plurality of the country that opposes the war. The risk there is not just exposure to the possibility of conviction in Washington, D.C., but a subsequent prosecution in The Hague as well.
Yes, my friends, Fitz is about to grab the pine tar rag, choose another, very special, piece of lumber and step back into the on-deck circle for the home run that is sure to follow. Batter up!