As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Flipping Libby?

I see that David Shuster is reporting that if Scooter Libby is convicted (closing arguments are today), prosecutors will try to get him to roll on the Vice President in exchange for a more lenient sentence. I think there's little chance that this loyal footsoldier, who's already lied repeatedly in service of the Vice President, would willingly testify against him, even if his own neck were on the line. Libby's got a year and eleven months to play defense until the President could potentially pardon him.

If I had to bet I would say he'll be convicted. The prosecution made the case in the closing arguments today that nine people would have to have misremembered in exactly the same way to believe Libby's defense. Anything can happen, of course; all it takes it one juror to make a hung jury. And clearly this case showed that Cheney was intimately involved in the outing of a CIA agent to get back at an Administration critic. I'd just say that getting Libby to flip would be like getting a bear to balance on a bicycle (it's happened, but you need the right bear).

That's not to say that the prosecution shouldn't go for it, as Christy Hardin Smith helpfully explains:

This was wrong. It was fundamentally wrong, for our nation, for our national security, and for the way business ought to be done by the supposed adults who are charged with keeping our nation safe, and not just with saving their own political bacon and trafficking in gossip and innuendo and carefully crafted leaks when it suits their political payback purposes. And for political operatives and craven power junkies like Karl Rove and Dick Cheney, who have made their lives and their business running over top of anyone who got in their way because they could, this was, truly, the last straw. That this was done by the highest reaches of power in the Bush Administration — the very people who should be guarding our nation's national security secrets the closest — was truly the last straw.

It is time that people in Washington took a good, long, hard look at themselves — and asked a fundamental question: am I here to serve myself or the public's interest? Because if the answer is (a), you are now on notice — we are not backing down or going away quietly once this one trial has concluded. If you will not provide oversight and accountability on behalf of all of the public and not just your cronies, we will do so. If you will not stand up for what is right, we will.

This is our nation, our government, our values that you are supposed to represent. All of ours.

9 people in this government leaked a CIA agent's name for no other reason than to rebut a critic. These are facts that played out in the trial and not even the defense is trying to impeach the claims; in fact, in some cases the defense is using them to try and nullify the jury.

Ask yourself if this is the government you want.

Firedoglake has the latest from the courthouse. They've done an amazing job, and without them this trial would not have the attention it deserves.

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