There is a Monica in President Bush's future, and her presence may be even more toxic to him than Monica Lewinski's was to President Bill Clinton. Even without a blue dress or cigar.
This Monica is Attorney General Gonzales' deputy and liaison to the White House from the Department of Justice, Monica Goodling.
Why is her testimony -- which she is now withholding by invoking her 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination -- so important?
Others from the DOJ who have testified before Congressional committees have been shown to have given misleading, incomplete and perhaps false answers to questions posed them. And they are saying that they were prepped for their testimony by Monica Goodling, who assured them the White House was not closely involved in the firing of the US Attorneys.
Now she doesn't want to talk about it.
Meanwhile, ANOTHER BOMBSHELL whose import is only beginning to be made clear is that it turns out White House employees, from Karl Rove on down, in executing their OFFICIAL duties, used email accounts housed on GOP email servers (both the Republican National Committee and the Bush-Cheney campaign committee). One source says that about 80% of Karl Rove's communications -- across the board -- are done via such a GOP email account.
On the face of it, such a practice raises the question of whether it was engaged in to circumvent the 1978 Presidential Records Act, which requires the preservation of communications by White House staffers acting in their official capacity as government records.
Fears have been aroused that the emails may be mishandled or destroyed. That is the dark side of the discovery.
The 'bright' side is that any emails using non-governmental email addresses, and housed on non-governmental servers, CANNOT CLAIM EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE to block Congressional inquiries.
In PT's humble opinion, the import of all this hullaballoo is that Karl Rove was planning to politicize the US Attorneys and use them as partisan shock troops in the 2008 presidential election campaign to advance the GOP's candidate's chances.
If you think that is farfetched, check out this MSM story ("GSA Chief Is Accused of Playing Politics in 'Improper' Use of Agency for GOP").
Links to stories are listed below --
- Goodling Testimony:
- NYT: "Aide to Attorney General Refuses to Testify About Dismissals"
- WP: "Citing Fifth Amendment Right, Aide to Gonzales Won't Testify"
- MSNBC: "Gonzales aide to invoke Fifth Amendment"
- Emails on GOP servers:
- Truthout: "White House Use of Outside Email Accounts Questioned" -- Congressional doc here.
- WP: "GOP Groups Told to Keep Bush Officials' E-Mails"
-- Dan Damon
View today's CLIPS here. Not getting your own CLIPS email daily? Click here to subscribe.
ARCHIVED POSTS OF PLAINFIELD TODAY FROM 11/03/2005 THROUGH 12/31/2006 ARE AT