05/07/2009 02:47 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Cheney's Faulty Memory

Today's New York Times exclusive, which reports that Vice President Dick Cheney was the one who first told his chief of staff Scooter Libber that Joseph Wilson's wife Valerie Plame worked at the CIA, contains this passage about a June 12, 2003, meeting between the two men:

"The notes do not show that Mr. Cheney knew the name of Mr. Wilson's wife. But they do show that Mr. Cheney did know and told Mr. Libby that Ms. Wilson was employed by the Central Intelligence Agency and that she may have helped arrange her husband's trip [to Niger]."

Appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sept. 14, 2003, and asked about Wilson's fact-finding trip to check out the White House's pre-war suggestion that Saddam purchased uranium from Niger for his alleged nuclear weapons program, Cheney told a much different tale. He insisted, "I don't know Joe Wilson... I don't [know] who sent Joe Wilson." Asked again, Cheney emphasized, "Who in the CIA [sent him], I don't know."

So, in June 2003, Cheney told Libby that Plame, working inside the CIA, may have sent Wilson to Niger. But in Sept. 2003, Cheney told Russert he had no idea who inside the CIA sent Wilson to Niger.

UPDATE: See Josh Marshall as well.