THE BLOG
08/09/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Rove Deposed By Conyers Under Cloud of Secrecy and Harriet Meiers Was Deposed Last Month

Under a cloud of secrecy, Karl Rove was deposed by John Conyer's House Judiciary committee, a few weeks after Harriet Miers' under-the-radar June 15th deposition.

Tuesday, Karl Rove faced John Conyers and the House Judiciary Committee behind closed doors. The NY Times reports he was interviewed. AP reports that he was deposed.

Politico reports "Roves deposition began at 10 a.m. and ended around 6:30 p.m, with several breaks, Conyers said."

So, apparently, it was a deposition, not an interview.

The goal of the deposition was to probe further into the firing of nine US attorneys. Previously, the Bush White House, claiming executive privilege, had blocked any questioning.

Politico also reported,

Rove's attorney, Robert Luskin, declined to confirm or deny that his client had appeared before the committee. Luskin said there was an agreement that the depositions would remain confidential until they were completed. However, in a court filing Monday, the Justice Department indicated that the deposition set for this week would be the committee's last.

That gibes with this reporters efforts. Several months ago, I spoke with one of John Conyer's Judiciary Committee legal team members who was supposed to be on the Rove questioning team. When I spoke to him today, he said he was not involved and gave me the name of another senior Conyers staffer. I spoke to this senior staffer who was con-committal, not even confirming that there had been an interview or deposition. He did say that when the process was finished, we'd get more information.

Then I noticed, in the Politico report, that Harriet Miers had been deposed in June. Checking Google News, there was surprisingly little to be found on what should have been major news. The Miers deposition flew almost totally under the radar, with brief mentions from Fox News, Alternet and Law.com. In an interview on my radio show later in the day, even Glen Greenwald was surprised to learn of the Miers deposition in June.

I called back to the House Judiciary committee senior spokesperson. Again, no confirmation. Apparently, the two depositions of Miers and Rove, with the possible addition of former White House lawyer William Kelley, are part of a deal, which includes terms that the depositions will not be discussed, not even confirmation that they occurred, until they are finished. When will they be finished? No answer there either.

One has to ask some additional questions that won't be easily answered. Now that Rahm Emanuel is White House chief of staff, and we're seeing his rough and tough, hard-ass approach to the job, clearly more aggressive than Rove's softer touch, could it be that behind the scenes, Emanuel is protecting his president's executive privilege and for that reason, behind the scenes, protecting Rove and Meiers? Such machinations would not be outside the range of the possible in the land of smoke and mirrors. Or, as one commenter mentioned, we can hope that the Obama administration is diligently working away, building an indefensible case, so when charges are brought, there will be no question of politicization of the judiciary. I hope the latter proves to be true.