Novak Clobbers Colmes on McClellan Claims

If Alan Colmes turns up at your Thanksgiving get-together sporting a couple shiners and a re-arranged smile, don't press the poor guy if he claims to have walked into a door. The FNC host just got clobbered by a certified DC heavyweight -- Bob Novak.

Novak was a guest on this evening's Hannity & Colmes. Colmes first questioned the venerable reporter about the item he published this week regarding the Clinton campaign's claim to have a scandalous story about Barack Obama. For the record, Novak stated this evening that since first reporting the story, "I've had substantiation from another source, another very, very good source, who with his own ears heard Clinton people putting out" allegations about Obama.

That's when Colmes decided to press his luck. Mistake.

View video here.

ALAN COLMES: I want to ask you for a second here about Scott McClellan whose book is coming out. And as you know some news broke in the last day or so. He said he unknowingly passed along false information. And then he said five of the highest-ranking officials in the administration were involved in his doing so. And he named Rove, Libby, the Vice-President, the Vice-President's chief of staff and the president himself. Is Scott McClellan basically saying they set him up?

ROBERT NOVAK: I have no idea what that's about. I never used Scott McClellan as a source and so I don't even know what he's talking about.

COLMES: I mean, isn't he really saying basically the White House put him out there, hung him out to dry? Knowingly let him say things that were false?

NOVAK: I have no idea. I don't know. I don't think you called me in to talk about something I don't know anything about, did you?

COLMES: I'm just curious because you were part of that story.

NOVAK: I don't know what you're talking about. I mean, are you talking about the Valerie Plame story?

COLMES: Yes!

NOVAK: That didn't come from any of those people. It came from the Deputy Secretary of State.

COLMES: I'm just telling you what he said.

NOVAK: Well I'm talking -- you're asking me the question.

COLMES: Yes.

NOVAK: And it came from Richard Armitage, the Deputy Secretary of State. Don't you read the papers?

COLMES: We've talked about this Mr. Novak. I'm aware of where it came from. I'm getting your reaction to some breaking news --

NOVAK: I gave you my reaction. I don't know anything about that. I didn't get any information from any of those people.

COLMES: I understand.
He sure does now.

At the close of the segment, National Review editor Rich Lowry, sitting in for Sean Hannity, observed regarding another subject that Novak had been in a generous mood. Colmes can be heard off camera plaintively clamoring for some of that generosity.
Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.