There was much less dish in the afternoon’s testimony, and lots of the same kind of niggling that has made the defense so unpopular with the audience. A significant portion of the cross examination today dealt with whether it might be POSSIBLE that Matt Cooper meant to type an “n” when he really typed an “r”… and thus, could it be MAYBE true that the sentence in Cooper’s notes (that, as it reads now, is a vague half-thought having to do with “the Wilson thing”) might actually be Libby telling Matt that he “had heard about the Wilson thing” — specifically, said the defense, Wilson’s wife working at the CIA — “but it might not even be true.”
Ta-da! Far from being bent on Wilson’s personal destruction, Libby was a champion of truth, a defender of accuracy, and a hero to all. Through such transmogrifications, one supposes, acquittals are made.
Oh, and there was some slight news. The defense has subpoenaed Jill Abramson, the former Washington bureau chief for the New York Times, to answer to Judy Miller’s testimony that Abramson brushed off Miller’s casual suggestion that the Times “look into” the Wilson wife story. They expect the Times to attempt to quash the request. Even more tantalizing was the post-Cooper argument from the defense that “We’d have to get the Vice President on the stand in order find out what really happened.”
We in the press gallery are in near universal agreement that calling Cheney would be both hugely exciting and a real gamble for the defense. One the one hand, Cheney is less popular with the American people than torture. On the other hand, if he can make torture seem pleasant by comparison, then he should have no trouble making Scooter seem sympathetic. Then, yet a third option — if he’s a hostile witness, can they waterboard him?