THIS IS NOT THE FIRST REVELATION OF WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN THE GW BUSH WHITE HOUSE AND IT WILL NOT BE THE LAST. EVENTUALLY IT WILL EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF AND DEVIL SAVE THE HINDMOST AS THE HOUSE OF CARDS COLLAPSES .
McClellan points finger at Bush, Rove
By: Mike Allen and Michael Calderone
November 21, 2007
Ex-White House press secretary says he was misled over Plame – and so was the press and public.
Former White House press secretary Scott McClellan names names in a caustic passage from a forthcoming memoir that accuses President Bush, Karl Rove and Vice President Cheney of being “involved” in his giving the press false information about the CIA leak case.
McClellan’s publisher released three paragraphs from the book “WHAT HAPPENED: Inside the Bush White House and What’s Wrong With Washington.”
The excerpts give no details about the alleged involvement of the president or vice president.
But McClellan lists five top officials as having allowed him inadvertently to mislead the public.
“I stood at the White house briefing room podium in front of the glare of the klieg lights for the better part of two weeks and publicly exonerated two of the seniormost aides in the White House: Karl Rove and Scooter Libby,” McClellan wrote.
“There was one problem. It was not true.”
McClellan then absolves himself and makes an inflammatory — and potentially lucrative for his publisher — charge.
“I had unknowingly passed along false information,” McClellan wrote.
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“And five of the highest ranking officials in the administration were involved in my doing so: Rove, Libby, the vice president, the president’s chief of staff and the president himself.”
McClellan says he was in that position because he trusted the president: “The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.”
Shortly after news of the McClellan excerpt broke, Politico caught up with Judith Miller and Matthew Cooper, two reporters who received information about Valerie Plame’s identity and were caught up in the subsequent legal proceedings.
“You’re only as good as your sources,” Miller, who was a reporter at the New York Times when the imbroglio broke, said with a mischievous laugh.
Miller, now an adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute, spent 85 days in jail by not revealing her source. “Nothing surprises me about Washington during this administration anymore,” she said.
Cooper, who was a White House correspondent for Time magazine and is now the Washington bureau chief of Portfolio magazine, said he “was always frustrated that Rove and Libby misled McClellan.”
“I’m glad McClellan is, too,” Cooper said.
McClellan, who is still writing the book, declined to comment further.
In recent conversations and in his many public speaking engagements, McClellan has made it clear he retains great affection for the president.
But White House sources have long said that Rove and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, the vice president’s chief of staff, allowed McClellan to suggest day after day that they had no involvement in the publication of the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame.
Later testimony showed that they did, although neither was the original source of the leak.
A federal jury found Libby guilty of on perjury and obstruction charges, and Bush later commuted his 30-month sentence.
In an appearance on CNN’s “Larry King Live” in March, the day Libby was found guilty, McClellan said Bush did not originally know about the involvement by his aides.
McClellan told King: “I spoke with those individuals, … and those individuals assured me they were not involved in this. … said what I believed to be true at the time. It was also what the president believed to be true at the time based on assurances that we were both given. Knowing what I know today, I would have never said that back then.”
Friends say McClellan was privately bitter and hurt.
He and Rove had come to Washington from Texas together.
“Scottie,” as Bush called him, had worked in the Texas governor’s office, making him one of the president’s longest serving aides.
McClellan, an Austin native, was White House press secretary from 2003 to 2006. Before that, he was traveling press secretary for the Bush-Cheney campaign of 2000.
When McClellan announced his resignation in April 2006, he and the president embraced during a tearful appearance on the South Lawn.
Bush said: “I thought he handled his assignment with class, integrity. … One of these days he and I are going to be rocking on chairs in Texas, talking about the good old days and his time as the press secretary. And I can assure you I will feel the same way then that I feel now, that I can say to Scott, ‘Job well done.’”
Now they’ll have even more to talk about.