The record shows that Scooter Libby did not leak Mrs. Wilson’s name to the press, nor did he direct others to do so. The record shows he openly acknowledged that Mr. Cheney had told him Mrs. Wilson’s status (although not her name) - so he wasn’t, as theorized, trying to cover up for his boss. The record also shows, curiously enough, that when Russert was first interviewed by the FBI, even he said it was possible that Mr. Libby’s description of events could have been correct. The FBI report reads: “Mr. Russert acknowledged that he speaks to many people on a daily basis and it is difficult to remember some specific conversations, particularly one which occurred several months ago.”
That, of course, was the exact substance of Mr. Libby’s defense.
In one ironically accurate line in “Fair Game” (albeit it a different context), Sean Penn/Joe Wilson says, “[T]hey served up Scooter Libby” to take the fall. Or, as Mrs. Wilson wrote in a different context in her memoirs, the entire prosecution of Mr. Libby “felt like a setup. In retrospect, it was clear they weren’t seeking information, but simply confirming their already closed conclusions.”
Quin Hillyer is a senior editorial writer for The Washington Times.