Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Rove, Rove, Rove your boat, gently up the creek...

We still do not know the truth about the "outing" of CIA operative Valerie Plame. President Bush said some time ago that anyone in his administration who had "leaked" her name would be fired. Or words to that effect.

Now there is mounting evidence that his chief of staff, Karl Rove, was involved. It may have been "payback" for Plame's husband telling the truth about Saddam not buying enriched uranium from Africa, as Bush had contended in his State of the Union Address as another step in the run-up to war. We do not know yet, but we know that Bush has changed his story. He now says anyone "convicted of a crime" involving the "leak" will no longer work in his administration.

I am not sure what to call that. But if it had been Senator Kerry who changed his story like that, the entire Bush League would be chanting "flip-flop" to every reporter inside the beltway.

There has, therefore, been much speculation about whether or not Bush will fire Rove, or anybody. Karl may get past the turmoil, depending on the meanings of "leak," "name," and "crime," I suppose. But there is also cynical speculation that Bush will not fire Rove because the President doesn't have the authority to do that.

All right, so that may be an exaggeration. Or not. Still, you have to remember that Charlie McCarthy couldn't fire Edgar Bergen, either.


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