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Lights, Camera…

judybennett.jpg

(Bob Bennett, Judy Miller, and friends enter the Prettyman Courthouse, pending Judy's testimony today.  Note that Judy has a "fidget with her hair" tell when she's nervous.  Great quick shot grabbed by Kevin Wolf of the AP.   The photographers have been stationing themselves at various entrances at the courthouse and have gotten some fantastic snapshots of the comings and goings of the witnesses and folks involved in the proceedings.  I see we have another quilted jacket on today — this one looks like it is a nice, warm down one, doesn't it?)

Whew, what a morning of testimony already.  And all of the mess with Judy Miller about to hit the fan. 

I wanted to hit a couple of highlights from David Addington's testimony this morning — especially when you look back at the pieces that Ari Fleischer and Cathie Martin added yesterday to the puzzle — it's looking not so good for Scooter at this point in the government's case.  From Addington today via Marcy's fantastic liveblogging:

Fitz: When we broke, published one exhibit, I'd like to publish one additional exhibit. Can you tell the jury what that is?

A: Subpoena from this court dated 1/22/2004, return date 2/6/2004.

Fitz: Attachment A describes all documents relating to discussion of the following (Addington to read).

A: 1) Wilson or his wife, 2) Valerie Plame Wilson or Plame, 3) stuff related to Wilson's trip including long list of reporters. [reading list of names into the record–it's the long list of journalists listed in subpoenas at the beginning of the investigation (including Jeff Gannon, which elicited some laughs here)

Fitz: Coversation about paperwork related to CIA employee spouse trip. Did you ever have a later occasion to discuss this.

A: Yes, right before investigation started. Fitz: Describe what you recall. A Larger office in OEOB, I knew it would have to do with the case. I reminded them that I was employee for the govt, our conversation wouldn't be privileged. He said, I just want to tell you I didn't do it.

F: What else was said?

A: He asked me how you would know if you met someone from CIA if they were undercover. I responded when I worked out there, you'd ask if someone if they were undercover. He asked if they introduced themselves how you'd know. I told him you wouldn't know unless you asked or saw a piece of paper that said it was classified. I volunteered to him I could get him a copy of IIPA that makes it a crime to reveal identity of covert agent. I took it to his office and gave it to him. (Emphasis mine.)

Ouch. That had to hurt. I find myself wondering if that vein that pops out on Scooter's left temple when he's peevish or stressed has made an appearance this morning, and whether the hand wringing has been going on in earnest just under the lip of the table and out of sight of the jurors.  Two questions leap to mind here:  (1) Libby just voluntarily and out of the blue said "I didn't do it."  Does that smack of guilty conscience to anyone else?  and (2) Why would Addington feel the need to go through all of the privilege mantra with Libby, unless he feared that Libby was about to reveal something to him that Addington did not want to have to later repeat to investigators?  (Or was this a warning to Libby not to say anything about Cheney?  Okay, that's three questions.) 

And then there was this further point from Addington this morning (again, via Marcy's exceptional liveblogging):

W You don't have personal understanding of what was meant, one way or the other.

[Again, I wonder if Wells is trying to introduce this through Addington to avoid VP getting on stand.]

A verifies Scooter's note, but notes that "Tenet Wilson memo" is in VP handwriting.

A Explains that "The Vice President Has Seen" stamp is standard practice.

W reads though Libby's sonnet. You have no personal knowledge wrt what was meant by the words.

A When you put it that way, yes, I have no idea how they came to be written, but I can recall that Press Office had made some statement about Karl and I know this bc staff gets transcripts of statements. It would lead hearer to assume that whatever was bad Karl Rove didn't do it.

W They exonerated Rove publicly.

A Yes, I don't remember the words

W Press Sec had made a statement exonerating Karl Rove.

A Yes, reason it sticks in my mind, I had conversation with Bartlett by this point something had been said that included Libby. I made the comment to Bartlett, I don't know why you're making these statements about this case. He said Your boss is the one who wanted us to do it. There are there things Press Offices shouldn't do–intell, You can't talk about sources and methods. 2nd Rules of engagement. 3rd, what's going on in a criminal investigation, because you don't know, you haven't conducted the investigation. Those three subjects are not fit subjects for a press office to be talking about.

W When Bartlett said, Your boss, that's VP Cheney.

W WH went out and exonerated Karl Rove, just Karl Rove. They did not exonerate Libby. By exonerating Karl Rove in the media and the public it created a clear impression that Scooter Libby had done someting.

A I can't reach that conclusion. Not to me, what bothered me is that press offices should not be discussing what's going on in criminal investigations, they don't know.

W He said the VP instructed him to clear Libby in the same way that WH cleared Rove.

A Let me repeat. Staff table in WH, he happened to be at the table. So was I. I didn't ask question why did you, I said you ought not be out there saying you did or didn't do something. He said, your boss is the one who wanted us to.  (Emphasis mine.)

Double ouch.  Somehow, and maybe it's just me, but I don't think this Ted Wells fishing expedition with David Addington is working out like he had planned.  And, it seems to me, Wells is drawing out more damning information about Libby on cross-examination than Fitzgerald brought out on direct, and Fitz pulled out some great information yesterday.  That has to hurt for Jeffress and Cline sitting back at defense counsel table.  (Can't wait to get Jeralyn's perspective on this from her perch inside the courtroom.  Yeeeowch.)

What is striking you this morning in the testimony?  Any particular facts or testimony or phrasing that jump out at you as significant?  Information you can't quite square with what we knew up to today?  Any guesses on La Diva Judy's testimony?

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com

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