Friday, September 26, 2003

Niger-Gate?

This is fresh news via Talkingpointsmemo.com: MSNBC is reporting that the CIA has asked the Justice Department to investigate the White House for allegedly leaking the identity of a CIA agent, a violation of federal law. The agent in question is the wife of Joseph Wilson, former Ambassador to Iraq and envoy sent to Niger to investigate reports or speculation that Iraq was seeking uranium from the African country. Wilson “discredited” those reports, but Bush still used the claim in his state of the Union address.

This story hitting on a Friday night is not a shock, burying news is the standard MO for this administration top to bottom. The timing may not matter, assuming the press does not ignore it. No one in the Bush camp can escape the power of the subpoena. This will be a test of life after the Independent Council Statute. Will John Ashcroft conduct a fair and impartial investigation? Will Congress hold hearings? Will Congress at least keep tabs on the thoroughness of the DOJ investigation?

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