PlameGate: Will the Final Phase be a Pardon for Scooter?

For a moment, I thought the National Review’s Andrew McCarthy had a major change of heart on this matter:

The claim that Libby is being smeared with the allegation that he leaked classified information even though he hasn’t been charged with it, and that because he has not been charged he has no way to get his good name back from the said smearing, is specious. This is not a case where a person has not been charged with any crimes at all, where the government doesn’t have the nerve to put its money where its mouth is, or where the government itself is leaking out damaging innuendo. The government has not filed a bare-bones indictment, as it could legally have done. Instead, the special prosecutor has given Libby elaborate notice, extensively describing his alleged conduct.

Josh Marshall notices others at the Corner actually saying Fitzgerald is doing a fine job. It’s amazing that this Borg-like group of Bush cheerleaders has flipped from attacking the efforts of the prosecutor and saying what the White House culprits did was no biggie to what seems to be a principled position for the first time in the NRO-Borg existence. But read more carefully – they seem to be piling it on Scooter all by his lonesome.

Then I recalled something James Wolcott said. That must be it – the White House attack squad is now using Scooter as shark bait – hoping the investigation stops with him falling on the sword.

But wait – couldn’t this play into Fitzgerald’s hands as he tries to pressure Scooter to flip? UNLESS – the White House has already promised Scooter a pardon. No way I said until something Brad DeLong said. Let’s see – these traitors in the White House have already outed CIA operatives. Heck – they even started a war that made us worse off in the GWOT to win the 2002 and 2004 elections. So what’s to stop President Bush from issuing a pardon to cover up this crime? Maybe the 2006 elections? No, Scooter will serve a little jail time. But recall the 1974 pardon of Nixon contributed to Gerald Ford’s loss in 1976. Scooter – you’ll have to wait until late November 2008 to get your pardon. Or you could put country ahead of your partisan buddies for the first time in your life.