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On Those Letters

My mother is in town, so I’ll be visiting rather than writing. I’ll start catching up to my blogging on Saturday. But I did want to make an initial comment on the letters written in favor of leniency for Scooter. Sidney Blumenthal has a superb column at Salon on the letters in general:

One after another, the letter writers declare that Libby’s "character"is "inconsistent" with the jury’s verdict. These same words –"character" and "inconsistent" — appear dozens of times.

[snip]

The act of procuring these letters is further evidence of Libby’sstove-piping of disinformation. Libby could not reasonably haveexpected to sway the judge, but there is a higher authority to which heis appealing. These letters constitute the beginnings of the LibbyLobby’s pardon campaign.

Blumenthal is right. The letters weren’t going to win Libby the Probation that his supporters were seeking. And judging from the look on Judge Walton’s face as Ted Wells read the Wolfowitz letter (which, incidentally, was submitted after it became clear that these letters would be released publicly), the letters were too saccharine to do the job.

But I’d like to poach from my Guardian column of today, addressing much of the same ground Blumenthal did, to point out the glaring conflicts some of these letter-writers had.

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