On the October 11 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, nationally syndicated radio host Laura Ingraham misleadlingly suggested that White House senior adviser Karl Rove could not have “outed” CIA operative Valerie Plame as an undercover agent because her identity was already known after she appeared “in Vanity Fair with her scarf and her sunglasses on.” In fact, syndicated columnist Robert D. Novak -- citing two “senior administration officials,” one of whom reportedly was Rove -- publicly broke Plame's cover in his July 14, 2003, column. But as Media Matters for America has noted, Plame appeared in the January 2004 edition of Vanity Fair. The photograph of Plame “with her scarf and her sunglasses on” was taken on November 18, 2003.
After Novak's column was published, multiple press accounts reported that Plame was an undercover CIA operative.
From the October 11 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes:
SEAN HANNITY (co-host): You know what it seems to me -- this is how I see your [Democratic] party. I see your party -- if anyone in our country stubs their toe, it's George Bush's fault. If there's a bee sting, you know, it's George Bush's fault. If you get a hangover, it's George Bush's fault. You have no vision for national security, homeland security, for the economy. All you guys want to do is bash Republicans. Good luck, if that's all you got.
KIRSTEN POWERS (Fox News contributor and Democratic strategist): Well, Sean, you know, your party is the party of personal responsibility.
POWERS: Karl Rove is personally responsible for what he did.
HANNITY: What did he do?
POWERS: Which is that he outed Valerie Plame. Now, you're going to argue --
HANNITY: That's an allegation. That is a false allegation.
ALAN COLMES (co-host): I want to know why Karl Rove, it was said by his attorney, [Robert] Luskin, back in July, “has shared everything he knows with a special prosecutor,” and why he is now, then, testifying again? Why did [White House press secretary] Scott McClellan say, “If anybody was involved in this, they'd no longer be in the administration”? And then the next day, [President] Bush said, “If anybody leaked classified information,” and then they said, “If anybody committed a crime.” They keep changing the goal posts here. Why is that, Laura?
INGRAHAM: I don't necessarily think they're changing the goal posts. But I can probably talk about why [special prosecutor] Patrick Fitzgerald might be calling him back. I mean, he might be calling Karl Rove back because Fitzgerald has learned more information that might either conflict with something that Rove said to him earlier or might add to something Rove said, and he wants to ask him about it.
That's how grand juries operate. And I don't think it's necessarily good news for Karl Rove that he's been called back for a fourth time. But I don't think you conclude anything from that, either.
I think for Kirsten to say he's outed Valerie Plame -- Valerie Plame, the last time I checked out with her, she was on the -- in Valerie -- in Vanity Fair with her scarf and her sunglasses on.
HANNITY: All right, Laura, by the way --
INGRAHAM: That was a great picture.
HANNITY: -- welcome back. We're glad you're feeling better.