July 11, 2005

No (Sensible) Comment

So, the president said (way back when the Plame investigation first heated up) that he was going to fire whoever leaked information to the press.

Now it looks like Rove leaked to the press.

Of course, the White House is going to have to comment on this right? Wrong.

Scott McClellan: […]The criminal investigation that you reference is something that continues at this point. And as I’ve previously stated, while that investigation is ongoing, the White House is not going to comment on it.[…]

Q Excuse me, but I wasn’t actually talking about any investigation. But in June of 2004, the President said that he would fire anybody who was involved in this leak, to press of information. And I just want to know, is that still his position?

MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, but this question is coming up in the context of this ongoing investigation, and that’s why I said that our policy continues to be that we’re not going to get into commenting on an ongoing criminal investigation from this podium. […]

Q Scott, if I could — if I could point out, contradictory to that statement, on September 29th, 2003, while the investigation was ongoing, you clearly commented on it.

It goes on like that for quite a while. If you are a student of baldface bullshit, you owe it to yourself to read the entire transcript.

You will be amazed at the contradiction and the paper-thin reason McClellan gives for not setting the record straight. The Bush administration expects us to believe that a comment on whether Bush really meant what he said back then disrupts the investigation.

Posted by James at July 11, 2005 11:35 PM
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That was breathtaking.

I wonder how much longer McClellan will be able to tolerate this job.

Posted by: Julie at July 12, 2005 9:17 AM

Ah, yes, the accuse/deflect/denial attitude, reminiscent of the Nixon years (thought McClellan is not nearly as nasty as Nixon's Press Secretary Ron Ziegler who acted like he owned the place).

More bits from the same press conference:

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, John, I appreciate the question....Now, I remember very well what was previously said. And at some point, I will be glad to talk about it, but not until after the investigation is complete.

Q So could I just ask, when did you change your mind to say that it was okay to comment during the course of an investigation before, but now it's not?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think maybe you missed what I was saying in reference to Terry's question at the beginning...

Posted by: Patti M. at July 12, 2005 9:59 AM

LOL! Wow. That's some impressive stuff. They've got to be working behind the scenes to come up with something to distract us. Wonder what it will be.

Posted by: briwei at July 12, 2005 11:46 AM

Perhaps a big homeland security alert.

Posted by: Julie at July 12, 2005 11:59 AM

It gets better. At this part:

--------
Q So you're not going to respond as to whether or not the President
has confidence in his Deputy Chief of Staff?

MR. McCLELLAN: Carl, you're asking this question in the context of an
ongoing investigation. And I would not read anything into it other
than I'm simply not going to comment on an ongoing investigation.
--------

I am told (by someone who watched it on Cspan or something) that this "Carl" is Carl Cameron from Fox Nooz. He actually covered the Bush campaign... his wife was a campaign worker.

This thing must be even worse than it looks if Fox people are asking questions that McClellan can't answer.

Posted by: Julie at July 12, 2005 12:19 PM

Good ole Puffy McMoonface, as he is called by Air America Radio's Stephanie Miller.

Hearing him say the first names back reminds me of everyone's favorite Scientologist speaking to Matt Lauer: "Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt..." (This is the interview where he asks Matt Lauer, "Do you know Ritalin?")

(see http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8343367/page/2/)

Posted by: Patti M. at July 12, 2005 12:25 PM

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