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Bullying CBS Didn’t Work Out So Well This Time, Did It Turdblossom?

I noted that the two most important bits of 60 Minutes’ Siegelman piece that magically didn’t show when they were scheduled in Northern Alabama pertained to Bill Canary’s invocation of "his girls" and Karl Rove’s past work with Dana Jill Simpson on oppo research.

Karl Rove took to Fox today, channeling his best good ol’ boy, to defend his honor [my transcription throughout].

Ah did not ask her or anyone to dig up dirty photographs of the Governor.


But she has never worked on any campaign in Alabama I’ve ever work on and I’ve never asked her to do a darn thing.

I found his answer to this question very interesting.

Did CBS News or 60 Minutes ever call you for comment? [inaudible]

Well, they called me five months ago about this and uh, my sense was it was an off the record conversation and I want to honor that but it seemed to me they were looking at the story. When they decided to go with the story CBS I would a thought would have called back and said "we decided to go with the story, would like to be, you know, would you like to have a comment?"and the first I heard about it is when they put out the news release on Thursday.


They didn’t bother to call me after five months and the first I heard about it is when I read it on the AP news wire.

There are two things that are interesting about this. First, as a friend of the blog noted in an email, five months ago was maybe a month after Karl took time off to spend time with his son who had gone away to school.

And this "off the record" conversation that Karl tried to honor sure sounds a lot more like Karl Rove, trying once again to convince 60 Minutes to spike an embarrassing story than it sounds like an interview (otherwise, why would Karl have to protect its off the record status?).

I guess it sucks to be Karl Rove, slowly waking up to the fact that a guy who, before he was canned, managed to take a President from 50% approval ratings to 25% approval ratings doesn’t carry the same weight with CBS as a guy supporting a somewhat-popular guy at a time when the country remained jingoistic. It’s not so easy to convince CBS to spike a story as it was in 2004, huh Karl?

In fact, Karl, you might want to get used to the fact that most private citizens don’t have the media call and ask permission before they publish a story about you.

Update: Dan Abrams will interview Dana Jill Simpson tonight. I wonder whether they asked Karl for permission to do so?

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