- Jul 31, 2005
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
WASHINGTON - The Senate Democratic leader said Sunday that presidential adviser Karl Rove should resign because of his role in exposing an undercover
CIA officer, and a veteran Republican senator said
President Bush needs "new blood" in his White House.
Rove has not been charged, but he continues to be investigated in the CIA leaks case that brought the indictment and resignation Friday of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, an adviser to Bush and the top aide to Vice President
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid said he is disappointed that Bush and Cheney responded to the indictment by lauding Libby and suggested they should apologize for the leak that revealed the identity of covert CIA officer Valerie Plame.
"First of all, the vice president issues this very terse statement praising Libby for all the great things he's done," Reid said. "Then we have the president come on camera a few minutes later calling him Scooter and what a great patriot he is. There has not been an apology to the American people for this obvious problem in the White House," Reid, D-Nev., told ABC's "This Week."
Meanwhile, Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., said Cheney should "come clean" about his involvement and why he discussed Plame with Libby before Libby spoke to reporters about her.
"What did the vice president know? What were his intentions?" Dodd asked on "Fox News Sunday."
"Now, there's no suggestion the vice president is guilty of any crime here whatsoever. But if our standard is just criminality, then we're never going to get to the bottom of this," Dodd said.
Public opinion appears to be running against Bush. Almost half the public, 46 percent, say the level of ethics and honesty in the federal government has fallen with Bush as president, according to an ABC News-Washington Post poll. That's three times the number who say ethics and honesty have risen during that time.
Republican Sen. Trent Lott (news, bio, voting record) of Mississippi said Bush should be on the lookout for "new blood, new energy, qualified staff, new people in administration." He said poor advice may have even contributed to the failed nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court.
Reid said Rove should resign or be fired for even discussing Plame. He recalled that Bush once said he would fire anyone involved in the leak, although Bush later amended that standard to say he would fire anyone convicted of a crime.
"If he's a man of his word, Rove should be history," Reid said on CNN's "Late Edition."
Sen. Arlen Specter (news, bio, voting record), R-Pa., said Rove has not been charged with any crime and that any talk of him stepping down is politically motivated.
"Senator Reid is entitled to his opinion, but he's not the president of the United States, and he doesn't administer justice in this country," Specter said.
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham (news, bio, voting record) of South Carolina said there "absolutely" should be an internal White House investigation. But he said allegations of illegal activity appeared to be focused only on Libby.
"I think the likelihood of Karl Rove being indicted in the future is virtually zero," Graham said on CBS' "Face the Nation."
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., urged an internal investigation and that Bush, "if need be, take the vice president to the wood shed."
"The real question for President Bush is going to be: is he going to be like Nixon — hunker down, get into the bunker, admit no mistakes," Schumer said, "or like Reagan, who actually admitted mistakes, did a midcourse correction and brought in new people, bipartisan people, people above ethical reproach, into the White House."
I know he would never think of apologizing or firing Rove, but if he has any sense at all he will bring some fresh blood into the Whitehouse. Hopefully he would choose real conservatives rather than neo-cons this time around.