It's coming on for the 12:00 repeat here on the East Coast, so I will try to transcribe it the best I can. News accounts simply haven't done this justice. Mind you, I didn't even catch this on a reread of the liveblogging that was going on earlier, but this definitely deserves as wide an audience as possible. Scott Jennings could only have done worse by just coming out and saying, "Fuck you, America! Wooooo!" and shooting up both middle fingers. This isn't an exact transcript, but it's the functional equivalent. It's the sound bite everyone should hear. The video ought to be available later at MSNBC.com.
LEAHY: I'm just asking you what role you have. I'm just asking you what you do. Let's not be too contemptuous of this committee. The American taxpayers pay your salary. You work for the American people. I'm just asking you what you DO.
JENNINGS: (leans over to consult with Mark Paoletta, his attorney) This falls under the terms of executive privilege, and respectfully I must decline to answer that question at this time.
We're paying his salary, and he can't even tell us what he DOES?
Defies analysis. Ties up the brain in such a pretzel that it's hard to formulate a response.
Even a Bush supporter watching this would have to say, "OK, this is over the top." These are your heroes, the guys who are spending $1 trillion – of your money – to not catch Osama bin Laden or defeat the Taliban. On the heels of the Minneapolis bridge disaster, it seems hard to believe that anyone when polled could respond that the country is "on the right track". If it's a Third-World country you want, I guess we're moving your way.
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