The Washington Times carries two interesting articles based on a 90-minute interview of Karl Rove by Times reporters and editors yesterday. The Times devotes one article to Rove’s humble denial that he was able to induce Dan Rather into disgracing himself by means of the forged documents he used on the CBS/60 Minutes report: “Rove scoffs at charge he was CBS source.”
Regarding the source of this theory, Rove referred to DNC chairman Terry McAuliffe as “a wild-man ranter and raver.” Regarding Dan Rather, Rove said: “He’s probably the only person in America that still thinks there’s a possibility these are true and accurate documents.” Rove also had a few notes and queries on the scandal:
“What did Mary Mapes tell Lockhart? We haven’t heard from her on this. Who did Lockhart tell what to in the campaign? What other contacts were there between CBS and people in the campaign?” he said.
He then said Mr. McAuliffe and the DNC must answer questions about their own series of attacks on Mr. Bush’s National Guard record, which he said “broke coincidentally with the CBS story.”
“I mean, they’d have to be awful nimble to have prepared all those ads and materials without foreknowledge. And the question is: Did they have foreknowledge, and if so from who, and why?”
The Times devotes a second article to Rove’s assessment of the political landscape today: “Rove touts Bush headway in key areas.” Rove sees the battleground states trending in the direction of President Bush and expresses particular confidence that Ohio is moving in his direction:
[H]e insisted that the campaign there is now “strong as an acre of garlic.” He added that although Mr. Kerry would have to win Ohio in order to become president, Mr. Bush could find another way to electoral victory.
“They can never say that Ohio moves out of contention, because they can’t win unless they break into Ohio,” he said. “We’ve got New Mexico, Iowa and Wisconsin, where the polls are showing us ahead, and that equals Ohio.”