Home Store In Memoriam Deborah Newsletter Forum Topics Blogfeed Blogroll Facebook MySpace Contact Us About

Fox Sends Shepard Smith To Washington And He Asks "Is The Vice President's Dude Going Down?"

Reported by Donna - October 25, 2005

Fox sent Studio B with Shepard Smith to Washington D.C. with hardly a word about it. Are they expecting big news there or something?

Of course Smith spoke with Brit Hume regarding traitorgate, the leak of Valerie Plame, a covert CIA operative. Brit Hume came through with a long, rambling, excuse ridden explanation of what he thought was going on.

The following is my transcript between Smith and Hume: (Paraphrased, but pretty much verbatim)

Shepard Smith: A new report from today's New York Times mentioning Dick Cheney's reported involvement... at least the discussion around the CIA scandal. The Times citing lawyers involved in the case citing notes taken by Cheney's Chief of Staff, Louis Scooter Libby. They suggested, according to the NY Times, that Libby learned of the identity of the CIA officer from Cheney before passing that information onto reporters.

Brit, what does this mean?

Brit Hume: Well, apparently it doesn't mean anything in terms of who might be charged as far as we know. We don't have any reason to believe that Cheney is the focus of the investigation. Um..we know a little bit about this...um..we know that at the time the Wilson mission came to light and he wrote his op/ed for the New York Times criticizing the administration (Comment: Would that be criticizing or proving this administration wrong?) on this issue of it's intelligence regarding Iraq and attempts to acquire nuclear materials in Africa and so forth.

Well, Cheney never heard of the guy (Smith laughs in background) and wondered who he was. And said he didn't find out about the mission until he read it in the press. He's told people that. So, one person who was....remember George Tenet was still CIA Chief at the time. The CIA Chief was over at the White House every day. He was the one who did a briefing for the president and presumably was in touch with the vice president. (Comment: So? What is he saying, that it's Tenet's fault?)

So, we can kind of picture what happens there. He says to Tenet, I didn't know about this. He knew it wasn't done at his behest as Wilson's report seemed to suggest. (Comment: So, Fox has changed from Joe Wilson lying to Joe Wilson's report 'seemed to suggest'?)

SS: Hmmmm....

BH: Tenet (Comment: I think he meant Cheney) said, 'Who is this guy?' One would imagine that Tenet would say, 'Well, this is the guy who got sent, his wife works for the agency and humma, humma, humma......'. Now look, that's what it sounds like happened. Not all of us in Washington, despite our pretenses to the contrary, are like people with their eyes closed who have been marched up to something and given the chance to touch it... (Smith laughs over Hume's words) ....have to tell what it was.

We know a little bit about what we could feel. But we don't know whether we're touching a chihuahua or a rhinoceros. So, we don't really know. (Comment: Is he losing it?)

SS: When do you think we'll know? Is it a tomorrow thing? And what happens....(talk over each other). Cause, you know what everyone wants to know. Is the Vice President's dude going down? Is the President's office in trouble? That's what everyone wants to know.

BH: (Comment: Looking pained but hard to tell) That is what everbody wants to know and of course the two names that you hear often that have been the focus of the coverage are Karl Rove and the Vice President's Chief of Staff, Scooter Libby. Nobody really knows what's going to happen to either one of them...whether either one of them...nobody but the prosecutor and presumably those closest to him.

He hasn't been leaky as far as we can tell. When you hear about lawyers close to the case it would be quite shocking if it turned out to be the prosecutor. There is no indication of that. In fact if you called a spokesman over there and you could ask the guy if his nectkie was ablaze and the spokesman over there and the sense of it would be 'no comment'. So..um..that's sort of where all of this stands.

SS: (laughing) Alright. So at some point, somebody may be indicted. Some somebodies might be. If there's somebody within the administration, a Scooter Libby or a Karl Rove or someone like them, does that person step aside? (Comment: This is how Shepard Smith talks)

BH: I think it's sort of unimaginable that someone who is fighting criminal charges could continue to function at that level. Um....obviiously an allegation of indictment is mearly an allegation and it's not proof of guilt (Comment: That argument, already?!) and the president has said that, you know, that if anybody is guilty of a crime in this, you know, they'll be gone. (Comment: After he first said 'anyone who was involved in the leak would be gone' - I think that's a definate flip flop)

But it would be awfully hard to imagine anybody staying around and being effective while they're fighting a criminal indictment so I think we can prety well assume that whoever was named in an indictment would be gone.

SS: You have a pretty good sense of what goes on around here. Are they in chaos over in the White House? Is there some degree of agenda sprawl as a result of this?

BH: Well, I think there's considerable heartburn over there because these are two very central players, particularly Karl Rove. But, within the Vice President's operation, and it's a very important operation in this administration, Scooter Libby is an important player, too. He's been kind of a point man in the efforts of this administration to get the CIA back under some kind of effective control. The belief has been that the CIA has been acting as a kind of fifth column within the administration. Fighting on a policy level with what the administration is trying to do so if he was decommissioned by an indictment that would be a blow. (Comment: So Libby is trying to bring the CIA under some kind of 'effective control'? Interesting statement)

And it would obviously be a blow if Karl Rove was indicted. A huge blow to the president. This man is a master stategist, on more than one level. He's not just a polictical strategist he's also a policy strategist.

SS: ...Bush's brain.....

BH: Well, it's been said, that. I wouldn't go that far but it's....he's an important player, make no mistake about it. And if he was forced to step aside (Comment: Forced? By whose actions?) it would be a huge blow, it would be very demoralizing to a White House which hasn't had a lot of good news lately. Obviously events in Iraq last week constituted a form of good news the administration had hoped for. The sizeable turnout in the election and the enactment of the constitution. That's a big deal the administration takes heart from that. But this is not...these are dark days at the White House because of this sort of cloud that has dominated the coverage in Washington lately and so on.

It hurts morale. This would hurt morale further.

Hume and Smith had a brief discussion regarding Harriet Miers and that was the end of this segment.

Comments: I had to print the transcript so you could get the feeling for the ramblings of Brit Hume. My comments can be found throughout the transcript. I also found it interesting that Shepard Smith was 'sent to Washington' as they usually send him to places where disasters happen.

Post a comment

Remember Me?

We welcome your opinions and viewpoints. Comments must remain civil, on-topic and must not violate any copyright or other laws. We reserve the right to delete any comments we deem inappropriate or non-constructive to the discussion for any reason, and to block any commenter for repeated violations.

Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.