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Say it ain't so, Bob

Bob Woodward is caught up in the Plame case, and knew about her ID — in mid-June 2003 — before Jailbird Judy. Even worse, he didn’t tell his boss at the WaPo that he was deeply involved in the case until now. We’re only learning about this at the present time because Woodward was slapped with a subpoena to testify after one of those “unnamed senior administration officials” squealed on him. (WaPo):

Woodward never mentioned this contact — which was at the center of a criminal investigation and a high-stakes First Amendment legal battle between the prosecutor and two news organizations — to his supervisors until last month. [Washington Post Executive Editor Leonard] Downie said in an interview yesterday that Woodward told him about the contact to alert him to a possible story. He declined to say whether he was upset that Woodward withheld the information from him.

It gets sleazier, because the formerly-straight-shooting Woodward has been slagging prosecutor Fitzgerald and downplaying the significance of the leak all this time as a talking head, which amounts to propaganda for the Bush Administration. Now we know why he did it – it clearly wasn’t in his best interest to spin it truthfully.

Woodward, who is preparing a third book on the Bush administration, has called Fitzgerald “a junkyard-dog prosecutor” who turns over every rock looking for evidence. The night before Fitzgerald announced Libby’s indictment, Woodward said he did not see evidence of criminal intent or of a major crime behind the leak.

“When the story comes out, I’m quite confident we’re going to find out that it started kind of as gossip, as chatter,” he told CNN’s Larry King.

Woodward also said in interviews this summer and fall that the damage done by Plame’s name being revealed in the media was “quite minimal.”

“When I think all of the facts come out in this case, it’s going to be laughable because the consequences are not that great,” he told National Public Radio this summer.

Is there something in the water up there inside the Beltway that robs folks of ethical principles?


How the mighty have fallen…

* Text of his statement, via Raw Story

* Excellent DKos diary by Glenn Greenwald, The Woodward Bombshell is a Disaster for the White House

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding