Abrams Responds to Rove by Not Reading Letter or Answering His Questions
On Saturday, NewsBusters reported that former White House advisor Karl Rove recently sent a letter to MSNBC's Dan Abrams asking him to identify exactly what investigative research was done to verify allegations by the network that Rove was involved in the prosecution of former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman.
On Thursday's "Verdict," Abrams told his audience, "Karl Rove has sent me an angry five-page letter," but chose not to share ANY of its contents, or address ANY of the 58 questions posed to him by Rove in the correspondence.
Instead, Abrams continued to point fingers at his target of disaffection (video embedded upper-right):
Now to a “Bush League Justice” update. A big development in a case we have followed closely for months. The case against the former Democratic Governor of Alabama, Don Siegelman. Now, congress is getting involved and Karl Rove has sent me an angry five-page letter.
Siegelman was released from prison on bond after serving nine months. He was convicted on bribery and corruption charges, but says his prosecution was political and claims it was spearheaded by former White House adviser Karl Rove. Rove has denied speaking to anyone in the Justice Department or the White House about the case. But there are many questions yet to be answered based on certain allegations about Rove and his relationship with various people in Alabama involved in the prosecution.
Today the House Judiciary Committee asked Rove to testify under oath about the case. But just last week, we asked Rove‘s attorney, Robert Luskin, in an E-mail whether Rove would testify if subpoenaed by congress. His attorney said, quote, “Sure. Although it seems to me that the question is somewhat offensive. It assumes he has something to hide even though Gov. Siegelman‘s uncorroborated assertions aside, there is literally no credible evidence whatsoever to substantiate his charges.”
Now under pressure from congress, Luskin has completely backtracked, telling roll call, quote, “Whether, when and about what a former White House official will testify is not for me or my client to decide but is part of an ongoing negotiation between the White House and congress over executive privilege issues.”
Since Rove has said he had no conversations with the White House about it, what is the executive privilege here? Rove also sent me angry five-page letter yesterday suggesting all sorts of questions he thinks I could have and should have asked various guests in the program including the former governor himself.
But he only suggested questions, no answers. We‘ll probably talk more about that letter later and I‘ll be responding to Mr. Rove.
Mr. Rove, this is your opportunity to answer under oath many of the questions you suggest I should have asked. Your attorney had said in no uncertain terms you would testify. We have the E-mail. And since you seemed determine to get to the truth, I would think you would embrace this opportunity to testify to congress.
We are not going to let this story die. A jury found Don Siegelman guilty. But if his prosecution was driven by partisans after him because he was a Democrat, in this case needs to be revisited, and an appellate court has ruled it will be.
Mr. Rove, you are invited on this program to debate the governor or talk with me about the case. We‘ll stay on it.
Forgive me, Dan, but as long as you were referring to this letter, wouldn't it have been appropriate to share some of its contents with your viewers? And, as Rove asked you to identify -- with 58 questions, mind you -- what you and your team did to verify the veracity of not just your story, but also those you've interviewed concerning the matter, wasn't the onus upon YOU to answer him?
After all, this is a former White House advisor, and you are just a reporter. Over the course of the past four months, you've done nine separate segments about this issue all of which accused Rove of nefarious activity.
As a former member of the Bush adminstration, he has taken the time to write you a very comprehensive letter asking specific questions pertaining to this matter so as to identify what you and your network have done to properly vet those you've interviewed.
Isn't he entitled to some answers? Are you, as a so-called "journalist," above scrutiny?
Don't you have an obligation -- not just to Rove, but also to your viewers -- to answer such questions posed by folks you're accusing of wrongdoing, especially if they have neither been charged with a crime nor convicted by a court of law?
Or, is that asking too much?
Regardless, readers are advised to not expect any answers from Abrams; apparently, that's not his style.