ISIKOFF: But the problem that people in the White House, Rove among them, may have is how did they know that Valerie Plame, or Wilson's wife worked at the CIA? What we do know is there was a classified State Department report that said this, that was taken by Secretary of State Powell with him on the trip to Africa that President Bush was then on, and many senior White House aides were on.
That classified State Department report appears to have been -- or may well have been the source for the information that Rove and others were then dishing out to reporters. And if that's the case, there still may be -- we don't know yet, but there still may be an instance where classified information was provided to reporters.
CROWLEY: There's -- we have got less than a minute left, but I want to ask you about the political versus the legal. The legal we're going to have to let the special prosecutor work out. But politically, there already seems to be -- the dynamic is already in place that we see, that this is somewhat of a snowball. We mentioned that there was sort of a contentious White House briefing. Politically, how badly do you think this story...
ISIKOFF: Hard to say. I think the problem that the White House has is the public statements that they made at the time in which they completely dismissed the notion that Rove or anybody else in the White House had anything to do with the outing of Valerie Plame, totally ridiculous I think was Scott McClellan's line that he gave to reporters.
Now, since, McClellan is refusing to answer any questions, saying we can't talk about it, it's an ongoing criminal investigation. The problem is they already had talked about it, and the question that is being asked is, are those previous statements still operative?
Monday, July 11, 2005
Inside Politics today:
by Atrios at 18:35