There is a certain poetic justice in the Karl Rove scandal. A political operative who has made his reputation on dirty tricks is hoist on his own petard as one of his schemes ends up triggering a criminal investigation that could result in his being indicted. The vast sound and fury now reverberating in cyberspace and on the airwaves about the scandal will not amount to much in the end if Rove does not face criminal prosecution. I predict this will only become a truly major Washington scandal when and if indictments are handed down. I assume, however, that Rove will fall on his sword (much like John Poindexter did during Iran-Contra) to protect Bush. In any case, there is as yet no suggestion that Bush has any involvement - beyond the usual lies and hypocrisy.
The announcement of the Supreme Court Justice nominee coming so quickly in the wake of the eruptions caused by the Rove revelations suggests that the scandal is doing real current damage to the White House. Although I think the Supreme Court fight will be successful in deflecting attention from the Rove affair, it may only be temporary. In the interim there are many worthwhile blog postings on this affair. Two that I highly recommend are the Frank Rich article, ‘Follow the Uranium’ in the New York Times and an excellent summary of the whole affair by ex-Clinton White House advisor Sid Blumenthal on Salon.
I also liked the comment by Jon Stewart, quoted on Kos:
It seems to me that whether or not this is a crime is a moot point. It seems to me that whether or not what Karl Rove was doing is a moot point. What seems like the real issue to this is simple: when it first came out that her name was released and people started wondering, 'was that a leak of a CIA operative?' the White House pretended they didn't know anything about it. And Karl Rove pretended he didn't know anything about it. To me that is so far, the only issue.
And don’t miss this Paul Krugman column from the July 15 New York Times.