Filed by David Edwards and Ron Brynaert
For eight years, Fox News Channel served as the go-to place for former President George W. Bush, and other administration members, any time there was a breaking scandal or controversy that they wanted to get out in front of. Almost always, the practically open quid pro quo arrangement resulted in friendly, even helpful interviews, which allowed the administration to turn the page to something new. But now that there is a new sheriff in town, the gang that could only "shoot straight" on Fox might be in need of more elaborate and protective cover. Cue Bill O'Reilly.
On Wednesday's The O'Reilly Factor, former White House deputy chief of staff Karl Rove (and Fox News contributor) said that he didn't plan to testify in front of the House Judiciary Committee, despite being served with a subpoena requiring him to do so last week. The subpoena, approved by an earlier vote of the House, was issued pursuant to "authority granted in H.R. 5 (111th Congress), and calls for Mr. Rove to appear at deposition on Monday, February 2, 2009," to testify about his alleged involvement in the political prosecution of an Alabama governor and the firings of nine US Attorneys.
One day after the subpoena, Rove's lawyer told the press, "It's generally agreed that former presidents retain executive privilege as to matters occurring during their term. We'll solicit the views of the new White House counsel and, if there is a disagreement, assume that the matter will be resolved among the courts, the president and the former president."
Rove told O'Reilly that the only reason why he wouldn't call Conyers' investigation a "witch hunt" was because he didn't consider himself a "witch."
"He's sort of like Captain Ahab, and I'm the whale," the portly Rove said of Conyers.
O'Reilly offered that Conyers was only out to embarrass Rove, and said that he could hide from a Congressional subpoena at Fox News. "Now, if you need a place to hide out, we have it here at the Factor. We have all kinds of tunnels and places we can put you," O'Reilly said.
"I don't need to hide," Rove said. "I don't need to hide."
O'Reilly didn't really think so either, and ended the segment by calling him a "stand-up guy."
This video is from Fox's O'Reilly Factor, broadcast Jan. 28, 2009.