"Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please." (Mark Twain)
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
Congress will conduct a series of hearings on national security and espionage issues raised by the CIA-leak controversy surrounding senior Bush adviser Karl Rove, officials said on Monday.
The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence plans hearings on potential national security threats posed by leaks, including leaks to the media, and will aim to toughen legislation barring the unauthorized disclosure of classified information.
But, as noted by kos (with an assist from the Cosmic Iguana), here's the important part of the story:
[Sen. Pat Roberts' spokesweasel Sarah] Little said the Senate committee would also review the probe of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, who has been investigating the Plame case for nearly two years.
So, of course, they're not investigating the crime; they're investigating the prosecutor. Nice. And why would they want to do that? Two possibilities come immediately to mind: First, and this is the point that kos and Cosmic I raise, is the intimidation factor. Let Fitzgerald know that he's being watched. That's problematic enough, but I think that the commentors at kos are getting closer to the heart of the matter as several of them explore the likelihood that, by calling an investigation and "compelling" the guilty parties to testify, they can be granted immunity that would then shield them from prosecution. Yes, any such immunity would likely be limited (so-called "use immunity," rather than "transactional immunity"), but as happened in the case of Ollie North and his Iran-Contra crimes, the congressional testimony would so poison the well as to make future prosecution untenable.
You gotta hand it to them - they're shameless, but they're not dumb. Not too dumb, anyway.
Wishful thinking, I'm sure, but Hope was in the bottom of Pandora's box