Signed, Podesta's Mother

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John Podesta didn't do his homework very well last week. The former Clinton Chief of Staff and current head of Center for American Progress said last Wednesday on NewsHour:

And the underlying facts, could you talk a lot about Mr. Wilson, but Mr. Wilson was right. When he went to Niger, he found there was no yellow cake uranium going to Iraq as the president said in the State of the Union. CIA directors admitted that was wrong; Condi Rice admitted that was wrong and it turns out Joe Wilson was right.

OK, so Podesta says that Wilson found no yellowcake was going to Iraq, and that Bush said it was, and that Rice and Tenet said that was incorrect. Fast forward to a few days later on Meet the Press:

And Mr. Wilson never said [Tenet's memo was conclusive on whether Niger was trying to sell uranium to Iraq]. Mr. Wilson said that he was asked to go to Niger by CIA officials, that he went to Niger. He found that the allegations that Niger supplying Iraq with yellow cake uranium was not credible. In fact, George Tenet apologized for having that phrase put into the president's State of the Union address. Condoleezza Rice apologized. Ari Fleischer, on behalf of the White House, apologized.

So now Podesta says that Wilson did not find there was no yellowcake going to Iraq, only that he could not conclude there was. And no longer are Bush's words wrong, but they merely should not have been included in the speech.

At least Podesta did his homework before Sunday, but it was several days late. And he still incorrectly implies a connection between the Wilson trip (which were about the flawed U.S. intelligence) and the 16 words (which were based on separate British intelligence). I give him a D+.

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"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

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