I’m going to type this very slowly so that Byron York can comprehend it: when Patrick Fitzgerald says that whether or not Valerie Plame Wilson was a CIA NOC is irrelevent to the case at bar against Scooter Libby — he means only for the case at bar.
You know, the indictment wherein Libby was charged with perjury, false statements and obstruction. Where Valerie Wilson’s job description truly has no relevence to the fact that Scooter Libby is a big liar. And a serial liar at that.
Or that he has acted as the firewall to Dick Cheney and others in the Administration, by throwing a wrench into the investigation.
From York’s own article in the National Review online:
"We’re trying a perjury case," Fitzgerald told Judge Reggie Walton. Even if Plame had never worked for the CIA at all, Fitzgerald continued — even if she had been simply mistaken for a CIA agent — the charges against Libby would still stand. In addition, Fitzgerald said, he does not intend to offer "any proof of actual damage" caused by the disclosure of Wilson’s identity.
Could that be any more clear, in terms of exactly what Fitzgerald was saying? Could Byron York be any more deliberately disingenuous in his manipulative ride on the spin-mobile describing the proceedings?
What part of the seriousness of being charged with mutiple felonies does not adequately register with Byron York? Perjury is serious business — I know the National Review sure thought so when Bill Clinton was facing potential charges of perjury, has that somehow changed in their minds now that a Republican is facing a jury of his peers? And what part of "there is an ongoing, continuing investigation" is so freaking difficult to understand — or does that not sell well to your readers?
Let me explain this very carefully, as though I were speaking to someone who is thick or dull-witted: Pat Fitzgerald charged Scooter Libby with lying. He will present evidence which shows why he thinks Scooter is a liar. If, at some point, he has enough evidence to also charge Scooter with more criminal charges, then he will present evidence regarding those charges.
Prosecutors present the evidence required by the charges within the four corners of the indictment — they don’t throw in extra bits just for fun, or because pundits have their hair net in a twist. The judicial process is not a political game — and Fitzgerald is not going to treat it as such — so take Barbara Comstock off your speed dial, Byron, she’s feeding you tripe and you oughtn’t swallow it whole.
Shorter Byron York: They pay me a salary to write this crap, even though I have no real understanding of the criminal legal process.
Or, in the alternative, I know exactly how the legal process works, I just choose to write inaccurate spin instead, lying to my readers to gain political traction with the kool-aid impaired. Mock me.
NOTE: I’ve been asked to be a guest on the Al Franken Show on Air America this afternoon. Sam Seder is guest hosting for Al. You can listen live to Air America at this link. I’ll be on the show a little after 2 pm ET.
UPDATE: From reader anon_1 in the comments:
The most interesting thing about the York piece is he admits (finally) that Plame was covert. Of course, he whines about it and tries to qualify that fact – hilariously complaining now that she wasn’t "covert enough". But you know his last few columns? Where he was darkly proclaiming she probably wasn’t covert? Turns out he was wrong and those columns were bullsh**. Shocker. No wonder it took him the whole weekend to write that tripe. He should of titled that column, "Okay I was wrong, so what."
Some days, I just love reading the comments here.