MSNBC Scarborough Country - Transcript
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SCARBOROUGH: Let's bring in right now Congressman Peter King. He's from New York.
Peter, I just-you somehow have been brought into the middle of this. I understand Joe Wilson, who is very involved in this case, called you a whore, and another word that I can't repeat because my mother watches every night. I take it that you don't think a whole lot of this investigation.
REP. PETER KING (R), NEW YORK: Well, I have a lot of respect for Patrick Fitzgerald. I think Joe Wilson is a liar and a fraud.
I can't believe that you people in the media have given him such credibility over the last two years.
SCARBOROUGH: "You people." You know, that hurts me.
SCARBOROUGH: We were running buddies. And now I'm "you people in the media." But it's not what...
KING: Joe, you went over to the other side. You went to the other side.
SCARBOROUGH: I did. I am on the dark side now, exactly.
SCARBOROUGH: But, you know, the thing is, and what I have said about Joe Wilson is, it doesn't matter. OK, listen, Joe Wilson lied about a lot of things. He misled a lot of people, but that doesn't justify anybody outing his wife if she is an undercover CIA agent.
KING: And I will tell you why.
First of all, if they knew she was undercover, she shouldn't have been outed. But when you have a guy portraying himself as being an agent of the CIA, going over there for the vice president, implying that, and coming back with a report which really said nothing, and you have the president of the United States being attacked worldwide for this, because basically Wilson said he was a liar, and you find out, first of all, who sent him?
Cheney didn't send him. Tenet didn't send him. How did he go over there? Well, his wife. To me, it would be logical for you say, well, his wife works there, and she recommended him. What is wrong with saying that? Now, if they knew she was undercover, that's one thing. But, if not, the's just laying out the facts. And the people should know that.
SCARBOROUGH: Do we still not know after all these years whether she is undercover or not? Was she an undercover CIA operative?
KING: They don't know, because she was at one time, but she hadn't been-there's a question if she was overseas in the five years previous to that.
There's also a question whether or not when Hanssen was turned in 1994, that he had actually already given her name to the Russians, so she was taken back from undercover operations. We don't know.
But the thing is, to me, you have a group of CIA people trying to undermine the president of the United States. You have Joe Wilson passing himself off as some honest observer, who was sent over at a high level, when he wasn't. And you go to the president, and you go to the vice president, you go to whoever it was in the administration, I don't know what they said, but, to me, it would be very logical to say, we didn't send him, Tenet didn't send him, but his wife recommended him.
SCARBOROUGH: Let's say she is undercover. And we all agree that she was undercover, certainly, for some time.
Again, what I have been saying is, even if that's the case, imagine if James Carville had outed a CIA operative at a time of war while Bill Clinton was president. We would have built the scaffolding to hang them from the highest point in Washington, D.C.
SCARBOROUGH: So, should we...
KING: What is the answer to that, then? What is the alternative?
If you have a guy like Wilson setting this up, his wife recommending him, how do you answer the charges, who this guy and why he was sent over there? Don't the American people have the right to know that, working in the CIA, his wife is working with other operatives to send over Joe Wilson to cover themselves against the president?
SCARBOROUGH: The American people do not have a right to know the identity of undercover CIA agents.
KING: Do people in the CIA have the right to work against the president of the United States, then? Send a guy over.
SCARBOROUGH: They do it all the time.
KING: Well, they shouldn't. In a free society, they shouldn't. They should not have it.
SCARBOROUGH: But who decides when we are going to reveal the secret identity of CIA agents?
KING: Well, if she is not an undercover operative...
SCARBOROUGH: If you get ticked off at Joe Wilson, does that allow you
if you don't like his spouse, who works in the CIA, are you able to go out and decide that I am going to reveal her identity?
KING: His wife was involved in this. She was the one who recommended him for the job. And he denied that and the Senate intelligence said he was a liar.
SCARBOROUGH: Right. Joe Wilson is-again, we all agree, Joe Wilson can't tell the truth.
SCARBOROUGH: It's not in him.
But, again, all I am saying is, that doesn't justify releasing Valerie Plame's name, does it?
KING: Well, she was involved in it. She was the one who recommended him and sat there silently while all these lies are being propagated by Joe Wilson.
And, also, we still don't know if she was undercover or not at the time or for the previous five years.
SCARBOROUGH: And that's still-you have got the special prosecutor going through Washington neighborhoods, probably went to Tucker Carlson's old haunt.
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You know, Peter, I want to talk about all these inconsistent statements that are out there.
KING: Well, I don't know if they are inconsistent, but we can go into that.
SCARBOROUGH: Oh, yes. Yes. There's a Web site. Media Research Center said that I was NBC type of Republican, because I said that the vice president lied. Katie trying to be polite. And I said, well, in Middle America, we call that lying.
He went on "Tim Russert." He said one thing that appears to be in complete contradiction with what's said, said he didn't know about Joe Wilson, or Valerie Plame, and the leak and all that other stuff.
It certainly hurts the credibility of the administration and Scott McClellan and all these other people to come out and say one thing and then we find out later on it just wasn't the truth.
KING: Really, I mean, first of all, the only reason that we know that Scooter Libby heard from Dick Cheney about Valerie Plame was because of the notes that Scooter Libby turned over to the prosecutor. These were his personal notes that he turned over. If he was trying to hide something, he wouldn't give the guy his notes. He would have destroyed them..
But, in those notes, though, we find out that the vice president actually did know what was going on when he was telling Tim Russert and others that he didn't.
KING: He told, I think, Russert in September that he didn't know this was going on until after the fact. I mean, he had nothing to do with Wilson going over there. Wilson went over in 2002. And he wrote his op-ed in June, I guess, of 2003, and I think Cheney was on, the vice president was on with Russert in September of 2003.
KING: Obviously, by then, he knew who Wilson was, because the whole world knew who he was, the world's greatest self-promoter.
SCARBOROUGH: So, what happens if Karl Rove is indicted, a big if? I mean, how-that really is the worst-case scenario for the White House, isn't it?
KING: And, by the way, I am consistent. I was against Ken Starr as special prosecutor. I think he was a bad special prosecutor.
I think Fitzgerald does a good job. I think it's dangerous having special prosecutors, unless they are absolutely necessary. This case doesn't rise to that. Having said that, now, if Karl Rove is indicted, sure it is. It's a personal tragedy for him. And it is, going to have a real devastating impact on the administration, absolutely.
SCARBOROUGH: All right. Thanks so much, Congressman Peter King, Lawrence O'Donnell, Norah O'Donnell, and, Tucker Carlson, especially for giving us the insight that everybody in Washington, D.C., is either married or sleeping with somebody else.
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