Karl Rove Not Testifying for Libby: CNN

CNN's Ed Henry just reported that fallen White House political guru Karl Rove now will likely not be called to testify after all on behalf of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby in the latter's perjury and obstruction of justice trial. Libby's defense begins this morning. There are just a few things worth noting about this "development"-- if you can call it that.

First, it is a reminder that the "witness lists" that attorneys offer to the court and to each other prior to trial almost always are longer than are the list of witnesses who actually make it to the stand to testify at trial. Lawyers want to keep their options open, pre-trial, so they put onto their lists the names of people who could conceivably help their cause, either by providing affirmative testimony or by offering testimony that undercuts one or more of the witnesses on the other side of the case. Perhaps if the prosecution's case against Libby had gone differently, Rove indeed would have been called.

Second, there is no way to tell, and there never may be, why Libby's attorneys chose not to bring Rove before the jury. Maybe it's because they believe that they can get similar testimony from another less polemic witness. Maybe it's because they believe that Rove's testimony would open a can of worms the defense doesn't want opened. Maybe they figure that the less the jury hears now about White House intrigue the better chance their client will have of gaining acquittal. Maybe it's one of another ten possible things.

Third, be careful about reading too much into this maneuver. Rove's absence at the trial is not nearly as significant as Vice President Dick Cheney's absence would be. And it certainly is not as significant as would be a decision by the defense not to call their own client, Libby himself, to testify that he simply couldn't remember the truth when questioned by federal investigators and prosecutors before the grand jury.

Fourth, if you are following this trial like a junkie, don't worry. There will be plenty of exciting days ahead in this case with or without "Turd Blossom," the President's nickname for Rove.

By Andrew Cohen |  February 12, 2007; 9:00 AM ET
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"Turd Blossom"? Turd Blossom!? Dubya calls Rove Turd Blossom?!?

Dubya, Scooter,Turd Blossom and a guy named Dick are running our country. Is it just me, or does anyone else see the problem here, or at least the joke?

Posted by: chuckterzella | February 12, 2007 09:05 PM

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