Tuesday, March 30, 2004
Now We Just Sit Back and Wait for the Punchline

I knew they'd do it... they had to eventually. Condi's gonna testify, under oath, in public. Good! It's nice to see the Bush administration finally doing something not because they look guiltier than Nixon if they don't, but because it's Good for the American People (wink, wink).

Of course, it's not without a couple of strings attached... this IS still the Bush administration. The White House has traded Condi's testimony (under oath, remember... I particularly like that bit, and I'll explain why in a moment) for an agreement that Congress will not take it to set a precedent, and for an exemption from having any other White House officials testify.

The "precedent" thing, like the separation-of-powers argument that heralded it, is pure bullshit. Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo explains better than I can... read his latest few entries while you're there. This isn't about not setting precedents, this is about continuing to pretend that the arguments the White House proffered against Condi testifying ever had any merit at all. And as Mr. Marshall also points out, what good does it do us to have her testify and contradict everything Clarke said, if we can no longer ask anyone else from the administration for clarification?

But there may yet be hope: Condi is a well-documented liar, prone to self-contradiction and, as we saw on the last edition of 60 Minutes, not always good at coping with the glare of television lights. If she buggers up just once, we've got at least a month's worth of pester-ammunition.

Addendum: Elsewhere, several people have suggested that perhaps this is really a case of the Bush administration expecting Condi to fall on her sword. Thinking back to a recent hint that Condi might have already been intending/expecting to leave her post at the end of the year, this is certainly a real possibility. Stay tuned.
4:02 PM ::
Amy :: permalink