Brit Hume: Current WH Leak Much Worse Than Valerie Plame


BRIT HUME: This, I think, in political terms is damaging to the administration because it feeds into the question of whether the administration can in fact administer. We had first the fiasco with the rollout of the health care program. Now we've got the troubles at the VA. now this blunder by the White House press office.

Think about this, this is an administration that is fond of telling us -- that the president is fond of telling us that he finds out about these things in the press. In this case, this was something that his press office put out and the mistake wasn't noted until somebody in the press told him about it. So they found about this from the press all right, after they put it out. That's a high level of bungling, I think it's fair to say.

It's going to feed into this whole question about whether the administration can run anything. Look, it's certainly fair to say that given the size of the government that every administration is going to have some trouble in some agency somewhere. I mean, think George W. Bush and his problems with FEMA and Hurricane Katrina. That was kind of epic at the time. And this administration, I think, it's getting to a certain critical mass, where you wonder whether people are going to say these people don't know what they are doing and they are not finding out.

BRET BAIER: Put aside the security concerns for this person and his job. What about here at home, the politics of how this and the size of the blunder?

HUME: Well, first of all, the comparisons I think to the Valerie Plame case which we all remember in which Karl Rove was remorselessly pursued by the special prosecutor. Scooter Libby, he wasn't the person who leaked the name was successfully prosecuted for what he said in a grand jury and so on.

This was a woman, even though her status was supposed to be classified, she was working at a desk in Virginia; this is a guy on the front lines in Afghanistan. It's a very different matter and I think it's fair to say much more serious and I think the public will recognize that and as I say, I think it feeds into this question whether these are people who can run anything.

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