The pressure keeps building...
Jason Leopold reveals the meeting that started it all:
In early June 2003, Vice President Dick Cheney met with President Bush and told him that CIA officer Valerie Plame Wilson was the wife of Iraq war critic Joseph Wilson and that she was responsible for sending him on a fact-finding mission to Niger to check out reports about Iraq's attempt to purchase uranium from the African country, according to current and former White House officials and attorneys close to the investigation to determine who revealed Plame-Wilson's undercover status to the media.Meanwhile, the Chicago Tribune editorial board is leading the charge calling for some public accountability:
Other White House officials who also attended the meeting with Cheney and President Bush included former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card, then-National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, her former deputy Stephen Hadley, and Deputy White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove.
In an editorial on Tuesday it declared that Vice President Dick Cheney had "been in his bunker long enough. It's time for him to answer some questions--and not in the friendly venue of Fox News."It's now obvious that Bush lied, and lied repeatedly, while obstructing a time-and-money-wasting judicial enquiry that he himself put in place.
Instead, he should appear at "an unscripted news conference" where he would take all questions from reporters...
"So someone is lying. It could be that Libby acted on his own in leaking the information. It could be that Cheney told him to do so without the president's approval. Or it could be that Bush was behind the leak. Those are questions that the Cheney ought to step forward and answer, along with questions about the unmasking of Plame....
"Bush was well within his authority to declassify the report. But for anyone in the administration to misrepresent its conclusions, particularly if the motive was to punish a critic, is an abuse of the public trust on a subject of the gravest urgency--the decision to go to war.
"Who was responsible for that apparent misconduct? We don't know. But the American people deserve an answer. And a no-holds-barred news conference with the vice president would go a long way toward providing one."
Bush's only real hope is to blame Cheney for concocting the whole Plame-smearing scheme, then apologise for having foolishly allowed himself to be dragged along.
He also has to fire Cheney.
Then hope the US public buys it.