Several sources I have read that commented on the Comey testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee seem to take it as a given that he is talking about the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program. A careful listen to the actual testimony – at least the clip that Crooks and Liars has posted – makes it clear that Comey is going to great pains not to identify the specific nature of what he and Ashcroft were analyzing and objecting to. Now, it is possible, even probable, that the gentlemen in question were talking about the warrantless wiretapping program. The apparent timing of the conversation and the events Comey spoke of certainly makes that a possibility.
I want to raise another possibility for your consideration, my dear non-existent readers – one that I have not yet seen mentioned in the blogosphere: perhaps they were talking about some other program or activity then under consideration by the current administration – something we, as members of the general public, are not yet aware of. After all, if they were talking about the warrantless wiretapping program, why the careful dancing around the specifics of the discussion? The alleged president has already admitted that it is happening, so there would be no real need for so much reticence on Comey’s part.
6/7/07 Addendum: Well, it appears that subsequent Comey testimony makes it clear that he really was talking about the warrantless surveillance program when he talked about the race to Ashcroft’s bedside, which is something of a relief. I mean, really, do we need another White House/Justice Department scandal right now? We have enough of those on our plate at the moment. –jd