Yep, I’m going to use the “H” word again, that word that all the right-wingers hate so much because it applies so perfectly to so many of them. Remember back on April 5, 1999 when Sean Hannity on FOX News said about the war in Kosovo, “No goal, no objective, not until we have those things and a compelling case is made, then I say, back out of it, because innocent people are going to die for nothing. That’s why I’m against it.” That’s the kind of thing I’m talking about.
The latest comes from Republican Texas Senator, Kay Bailey Hutchinson. Check out this post on the Daily Kos, which quotes Hutchinson’s thoughts from this week’s Meet The Press about how she doesn’t think it would be really good to indict someone based upon a “perjury technicality.” Gotta love that one. Here’s her entire quote:
Ms. Hutchison said she hoped ?that if there is going to be an indictment that says something happened, that it is an indictment on a crime and not some perjury technicality where they couldn?t indict on the crime and so they go to something just to show that their two years of investigation was not a waste of time and taxpayer dollars.?
If you follow the link above to KOS, you’ll see all the legions of Republicans who felt that, at least for Bill Clinton, spending $50 million on an investigation, and only coming up with perjury was just fine with them and was also a serious, serious crime that did severe damage to the country. So what did Hutchinson herself say back then? Surely she had similar thoughts about Bill Clinton’s perjury? That maybe Ken Starr couldn’t indict any crime, so he just went with a perjury technicality just to show that his years of investigation wasn’t a waste of time and taxpayer dollars? Well, let’s just take a look, shall we? Here’s what she said, from Think Progress:
[S]omething needs to be said that is a clear message that our rule of law is intact and the standards for perjury and obstruction of justice are not gray. And I think it is most important that we make that statement and that it be on the record for history.
I very much worry that with the evidence that we have seen that grand juries across America are going to start asking questions about what is obstruction of justice, what is perjury. And I don?t want there to be any lessening of the standard. Because our system of criminal justice depends on people telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. That is the lynch pin of our criminal justice system and I don?t want it to be faded in any way.
Wow! At the time, she was concerned about all the grey areas, and didn’t want any lessening of a standard because our criminal justice system depends on people telling the truth!
I guess it’s just because this whole thing revolves around merely the leaking of a covert CIA operative’s name to the press — you know, something as insignificant as that — that she’s changed her tune so drastically. Do these people think there’s no record of their inconsistencies?
It is the very nature of a cover-up that indictments made will be of the nature of obstruction of justice, perjury, etc.
It is almost a complete certainty that the leaking of Valerie Plame’s name to the press was in retaliation to Joseph Wilson’s article in the NY Times that claimed Saddam never tried to purchase “yellow cake” from Niger. And just to show that the GOP has not yet learned its lesson from this whole situation, its plans in the wake of the upcoming indictments is to smear, smear, smear and smear some more. The prosecutor is a Democratic hack. Democrats want to criminalize those who do not agree with their ideology. When you hear these talking points over the next few weeks, just remember that only a few weeks ago, George Bush said that the prosecutor was handling things “in a very dignified way.”
This NY Times piece ties the leak to Cheney, but the article also claims that, “Disclosing a covert agent?s identity can be a crime, but only if the person who discloses it knows the agent?s undercover status.
It would not be illegal for either Mr. Cheney or Mr. Libby, both of whom are presumably cleared to know the government?s deepest secrets, to discuss a C.I.A. officer or her link to a critic of the administration.” This is contrary to the statement of confidentiality that all government officials must sign in regard to security of classified information. If a government official is not sure whether or not someone is working in a covert role, they are supposed to verify this information before disclosing it. Claiming they “didn’t know” isn’t good enough. It’s an ethical breach, one of the type for which this administration is well known.