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Libby Live: Cathie Martin, Two


Cathie Martin's up this afternoon. Looks like Ari is up after her–he's in the building, but obviously, Fitz is not ready to put him on until he's done with Martin.

One little tidbit about Martin's testimony (I think Christy will expound on it later). During one point of the testimony, she was staring HARD at her attorneys, notably. Then she nodded. Christy also says that Barbara Comstock and Libby's wife moved on their bench so they had Cathie directly in their line of sight. I'm really looking forward to Christy's update on the thick tension inside the courtroom itself later today. She's taking off right now to go home to her Peanut.

Here we go.


Fitzgerald just paging through his notes waiting for the jury. Boy, Martin doesn't look like she's having a fun time.

Walton: Lunch alright? Good, we try to keep you happy. I'm going to give you another cautionary instruction. You are instructed that there is no dispute between the parties that on July 8 certain portions of the NIE had been declassified, although Ms. Martin had not been made aware of the declassification.

F July 8 were you aware of a meeting between Libby and Miller.

M No.

F A telephone call with Ms. Mitchel, was there discussion as to a news report by Mitchell.

M The next day which was Wednesday, as is typical we talk about breaking news since the previous day. Stephen Hadley raised the evening news report by Mitchell and said that there had been suggestions that WH was pushing blame to CIA and that was not helpful. Hadley said Tenet was unhappy, Hadley said we shouldn't be saying it. About 20-some-odd people, a lot of people were on the trip to Africa. A dozen at the table and a few of us who sit behind–maybe sixteen. Who did Hadley believe was saying this–he turned around and looked at me. 

F Had you spoken with Mitchell.

M Libby sitting directly in front of me. He looked down. Mr. Hadley asked me and others from the press office and Michael Anton had him join us as well, to talk about the story and told us again we should not be pointing fingers, this was not the CIA's fault in any way shape or form. Afterwards I went to see the VP bc I thought the VP should know Hadley thought I had something to do with these reports.  Spoke to VP, Scooter was there, thought we had something to do with this. 

F What happened the rest of the week in terms of your access to comm strategy.

M I was not involved any more with senior people, I was involved with my staff.

F Were you the only press person who was excluded at that part. 

M My understanding was everyone was in the dark.

M On Thursday evening, July 10, I had been monitoring what was going on in the media, I hadn't talked to Scooter, I wanted to make sure he didn't need anything. If you need me I'm here, but if not I'm going to leave. Hang on, I want to talk to you.  We talked about a decision to keep communicators uninvolved.

M There had been a decision not to have communicators involved but wanted the judgment of someone in communication. Tenet is going to give a statement about the 16 words. There's ben a discussion abou twhat he's going to say, Mayfield was in teh room she had papers that seemed to reflect notes back and forth with Tenet. Had been occurring through Hadley. During that Conversation Hadley called, Scooter asked me to leave the room. Going in and out of his office. Returned to his office. 

F Anyone besides Hadley calling at that time?

M I think that Scooter and Hadley and Scooter and VP. I left for conversations with either one of them.  I was writing notes about the strongest statement we could get from Tenet, also thinking about the VP piece of this, to make sure ours was in there was well, what can we do as part of tactics around this statement. 

M She was outside, writing notes, VP and Hadley both called Libby, she left for all of those calls. Wrote notes on what they should do while she was outside.  

[Shit I lost some]

M Things they could do if the Tenet statement wasn't strong enough. We could do the Sunday shows–we often use MTP. I said Cheney could go on MTP. He didn't want to do that. Could give an exclusive. I believe I wrote the word "leak" to reporter in notes.  Suggested an oped. Or we could talk to a columnist. 

M Exlclusive, a reporter would like a story, they're competing with each other, you can give it to them as SAO> 

A new document. 

M A typed document from Mayfield and my notes that I wrote on it on the back of each page about the statement and the press strategy.  And other side.


M [describing the note] At top of backside her notes. Black is what the press strategy options were. Describing it:

  • MTP (putting VP on MTP), plus a pro and con of putting VP on MTP Pros: best format, we control the message, Cons: too weedy [Hey Jane!! I'm not the only one!] Too defensive, Raises the bar, meant I thought it raises the bar on the story.
  • Leak to Sanger/Pincus/Newsmag: Sanger was working on what he thought was a definitive piece, we could go to Sanger and tell him our version of this. Reporter with NYT. Pincus, WaPo, must have been writing story about his particular story. Newsmags, bc it was the end of the week, Time, Newsweek, deadlines are on Saturday.
  • Press conference with Condi or Rummy.
  • Op-ed. In my vernacular, it also can mean having a third party write one [you want to name those third parties, Cathie?]

M I beleive Jennie Mayfield asked for a copy, and I made a copy. I'm pretty sure I gave her the original.

F On July 11, did you have contact with a reporter for a newsmagazine. 

M Matt Cooper, Time magazine. He was writing about the story of the week, 16 words, by this point we had said they shouldn't have been in the SOTU.

F Did you get back to him with sufficient answers.

M No, I said I would try to get him answers.

F Statement from Tenet?

M Friday evening.

F SIgnificance on Friday evening.

M Fewer people paying attenion on Friday evening, and fewer people paying attention on Saturday was when it was reported. My view of the statement was that it was helpful, but didn't end the story. I wasn't at the office when it came out. I thought it had some helpful things, but I didn't believe it'd end the story. Refers to trip the next day, we discussed it. To my recollection, I didnt' talk to Cheney on Satuday. I'm pretty sure I expressed my opinion of it to Libby.

M Christening of Ronald Reagan (not sure if used the right term). He was going to give remarks on the ship.

F Who was on the trip.

M Scooter, Addington, Clare O'Donnell (D COS, Office Manager), some people who were old Reagan staffers. The normal people. Me,  The VP aid.

F Mr Libby, Accompanied by family?

M He was.

M I reminded Scooter I needed to get back to some reporters. On the return trip I was sitting on the back of the plane, Scooter's family and the VP family was up front. Scooter came back to see me and asked what we had to do. Cooper, Kessler WaPo. We talked about the Cooper questions first. We talked about what the story was going to be. 

F introduces new exhibit.


M Exhibit is Email from Cooper.

Who in VP communicated to CIA interest in Niger. How and when

Did VP discuss this in personal visits to Langley

Did they play a role with inclusion in SOTU?

What other briefings did VP get. He regularly gets own CIA briefing?

How may people employed by VP Nat Security staff.

VP has voracious appetite for raw intelligence–still true? 

(Some "no's" in questions)

Scooter's notes on email: 

How it unfolded

Fall out

Large story,

Not attribute. 

 Scooter goes up to front of AF2, then comes back, has a card in hand. It says

He wants us to give statement on the recrod. He wants me to do it.

M He is VP and Me is Scooter Libby. 

F introduces card.  

M I asked for the card, I wanted to type up the quote, to make sure the reporter got the quote right.


F introduces new exhibit  which is the card.

M describes the notes, identifies Scooters handwriting

F introduces Martin's typed up version of that.

M typed up cleaned up version of card.

On the Record.  

Deep background


M We landed after Libby said he wanted to make a statement. It's hard to call from the plane. Thought we should call from Edwards AFB. Lounge area. used one of back offices, Scooter, Jenny Mayfield. 

F What type of phone.

M Could hear Libby's side of conversation, not the other side.  He hadn't spoken with Cooper before; I hadn't spoken to him before. A little chitchat at the beginning. Scooter holding the card, I have a quote for you. 

F Any discussion about Wilson's wife, about other reporters saying at that time?

M No

F What happened after Libby spoke to Cooper

M Should we call Newsweek to be fair to them, since we don't normally give an on the record conversation. Scrambled for Evan Thomas' number. I had … I don't think we yet had the number. Called my press secretary for the number. Need to get back to Kessler. It was late, it was Scooter's son's birthday. We'll ride home with you in the Van so you can get home sooner and be with your child. 

F did he reach out to Thomas at Newsweek.

M Called and left a message

F Call from Kessler

M Scooter called Kessler. He was waiting for a response to me. Not specifically related to 16 words.

F Any discussion about Wilson's wife?

M None. 

F July 14. Proir to that newspaper article, had any reporters contacted you and told you that they had heard Wilson's wife worked at CIA. ANd prior to that date had LIbby told you that Russert had told him that Mrs. Wilson worked at CIA.  

M No

F July 14, Time

M Hard copy on Monday, we get a copy on Sunday. I paid attention to check Scooter's quote. They had substantially shortened it and taken it out of context. At some point I had a discussion that we needed to fix it. It was also going to be what I was going to point other reporters to about our OTR discussion. I had conversations with Matt Cooper about my displeasure that I put Scooter on the phone with him OTR which we didn't do very often, I thought it was taken out of context and I wanted them to correct. At some point Cooper came back to me, couldn't fix the printed magazine.  Cooper: We're going to put the quote in a web story. People don't read the website same as htey do the magazine.

M Luncheon with conservative columnists at VP house. Myself and Scooter and VP. Not really frequent–I recall four or five. It's the 18th, we're still talking about the story. All this sort is part of the background. Bartlett and Hadley going to do a briefing. Our clearance process, how that whole process works. As part of that as a tactic should we also do these conservative columnist luncheons to tell the larger story to taht audience. Communicators asked me to do it, to amplify a press briefing. 

F Press briefing–OTR or background.

M Can't remember. Reported as coming from the WH.

F Who invited the conservative columnists. Scooter invited most, I invited a couple.

F When you say invited. how?

M It was late, we called them. Would you like to come. Had to get clearance info to get them cleared in.

F Did there come a time when you learned investigation? Rove as part of the investigation?

M Yes. 

F Did you ever discuss the investigation with Libby.

M Yes, WH being questioned, being asked about specific staffers. Asked about Karl, Scooter, Abrams. At some point I had a conversation with Scooter McClellan made a statement about Karl, Scooter said, why don't they say the same thing about me. I said, "You need to talk to Scott." Just that conversation. Not invlved in any further discussions about what the WH should say. 


Wells up 

W: do you recall the statement, "whether all the reporters know." [Wells is asking a different question than the one Fitz asked] 


W Fitz asked you whether you heard anything about what "other reporters are saying."

W You were not there for the whole conversation

M received a phone call from my press ecretary, did have it on beach, she could go back to the house.

W you were not present to overhear the entire conversation bc Millerwise called you during the call

M I was physically present, but on the phone for part of it

W You did not hear the entire conversation. You've been very clear about that.  You made clear to the FBI that you did not overhear the entire call and you went to talk to Millerwise. 

M I don't specifically recall making that clear to FBI.

W when you say you did not hear Mr Libby that is just wrt the portion of his conversation with Cooper that you were present for.  Common practice wrt what you should have been doing while Libby was having that call you would have been on a speaker phone or on another extension.

M if we were in Wh, yes.

W that wasn't possible bc you were on a phone at Edwards AFB Just pure happenstance at very moment that you were listening to Libby's conversation with Cooper but for that happenstance, you woul dhave been able to tell the jury what he said, you know he had never spoken to Cooper and you know that Libby was trying to get hom. Mrs. libby and the two kids in the next room. Libby wanted to get home bc son's birthday. Only reason calls got made is because you were nagging Libby and VP bc Cooper had sent you questions

M I nagged Scooter we needed to decide whether we should be in the story. I didn't talking the VP that day. I wasn't nagging him, only Scooter.  

W Fitz also asked questions whether you had recollection of discussions about what reporters were saying about Mrs. Valerie Wilson.

M No recollection

W Except for 10-20 seconds when you recollect you told Libby and Cheney about Mrs. Wilson's wife working at CIA

M My recollection was the only conversation is when I learned of his name and his wife worked there.

W and you never had any discussions about Mrs. Wilson. 

W During this week when you were part of the team at no time did you say anything to Libby about Mrs. Wilson.  Your job, get whole story out, get whole story out, Libby wanted to get the whole story out. You did not view "the wife" as part of the story

M it seemed not helpful to us. It explained something to me about why he got sent.

W when you were on a mission, you did not view "the wife" as part of that story. When you listen to VP Cheney, at no time did you understand that to have anything to do with the wife.




W [Wells walking away from mike] Vice President says you should be completely accurage, lay it all out. WRTresponding to Wilson's allegations.

M VP wanted whole story about trip, report, made public.  

W Wanted the WHOLE story out.


W Is it correct that at no time did VP indicate to you that he viewed Mrs. Wilson or her job status as part of the story?

M I did not have the conversatoin with the VP about that.

W VP Never uttered a WORD to you IN HIS LIFE.

M Not that I recall but I uttered words to him about. 

W You have had no recollectoin

M I can't be sure it lasted 20-30 seconds. I remember my portion of the conversation.

W Conversation also involved other information about Wilson. Mr Fitzgerald asked you about what took place during week of July 7. Conversations with Hadely, Mitchell, Tenet, reporters, conversations with VP and Mr. Libby. Is it correct that you have no knowledge of Scooter Libby EVER discussing any information concerning Mrs. Wilson or her employment status. And the conversations that you were asked questions about involving Mitchell and Hadley. Those conversation had nothing to do with the wife, Mrs. Wilson. 

M Correct.

Maritin drinking water.

W Miss Martin, when you testified that its your recollection that you had a conversation with Libby and the VP concerning Mrs. Wilson sometime between May 6 and July 6, correct?  You said you recollected having two conversations with Hadley.

M Not Hadley, Mr. Harlow.

W I apologize. One of the conversations was on or about July 8. If we just put Harlow, two conversations. The conversation where you discussed Mrs. Wilson was prior to July 8. We've got to try to date the conversation with Mr. Harlow and that would tell us when you had the conversation with Libby and VP.

She looks away, behind her.  I think she's looking at screen. Wells is doing timeline.

W There are some notes concerning that conversation but they're not dated.

Wells admits some of the notes hands it to her. Putting it up on screen. Her notes, on lined paper. He highlights:

Charge in Baghdad.

Married to a CIA agent. 

W When you said "married to a CIA agent" that is not what Harlow said to you, you referred to anyone who worked at CIA as agent. You have no knowledge that Mrs. Wilson's job status was classified.  

W Remember being interviewed by FBI and they said there were phone records of conversations with 6/10 or 6/11

M I don't remember them saying that. But I do remember them saying "just look at the phone records."

W enters phone records into evidence.


Table of calls to 202 456-9042.

M My office, can't remember whether it was my direct or my office.

W Harlow called on 6/10 for 5:30 and  

M It says 30 seconds.

W I'm sorry.

6/10 call 4:24

6/11 call 5:18 

W This says you had a call on 6/10 and 6/11. 

M Correct.

W You were preparing for Pincus's article.

M I don't recollect how it happened.

W do you recollect Pincus came out on June 12.

W Do you recollect that you had the conversatoin before the article came out?

M I don't think I can recollect that. I can't place it there in my memory. 

W brings her FBI interview. I think he's trying to discount the Grenier conversation entirely, by saying she was JUST responding to Pincus.

M reads the FBI interview. It refreshes my recollection of what was going on at the time. But my memory doesn't place it there. It makes sense to me. I've never been able to date it other than those two dates. 

W The call was around the time of the Pincus article.

M It makes sense that it could have happened that way.

10 minute recess. I'll start a new thread. 

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Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel is an American journalist whose reporting specializes in security and civil liberties.