Thursday, April 06, 2006

Goood Morning to the Mainland!

Slate says:

The Washington Post and Los Angeles Times leads with government documents showing that indicted former White House aide Scooter Libby testified it was President Bush who authorized Scooter to leak (cherry-picked) pre-war intel about Iraq in an effort to rebut Joe Wilson's criticisms. The New York Times, Wall Street Journal's world-wide newsbox and USA Today lead with the compromise immigration Senate billdetailed in TP yesterday—being nearly wrapped up last night before some hitting snags in the wee hours. (USAT doesn't seem to catch the last-minute problems.)

Libby testified that Vice President Cheney told him Bush "specifically had authorized" him to "disclose certain information" from the classified National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq. The newly disclosed documents, which came from the special prosecutor's office, don't assert that Bush told Libby to out former CIA agent Valerie Plame (whose name was not in the NIE) and in fact says Bush was "unaware of the role" Libby played in the outing.

In any case, Libby said a White House lawyer had assured him before he leaked that the leak wasn't really one, since if the president ordered it that amounted to declassification, a notion legal experts backed up. But Bush has long portrayed himself as an anti-leak purist. "I've constantly expressed my displeasure with leaks, particularly leaks of classified information," he once said regarding Plame. "If there's a leak out of the administration, I want to know who it is."

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