Sent Tuesday, February 21, 2006 10:53 pm
To +NBC News Meet the Press Questions
Subject Correct Matalin's Lies
Dear Meet The Press,
Mary Matalin lied on your show Sunday February 19.
In reference to the hunting accident in which Vice President Dick Cheney shot Harry Whittington, Matalin said: "this tragedy is conveyed as 'Vice president'--she [New York Times colunnist Maureen Dowd] just characterized it--'The vice president sent people out for four days to blame the victim.' No such thing occurred."
In fact that's precisely what occurred. And Matalin should know because she was involved. First, Katherine Armstrong told the Associated Press on Sunday February 12 that Whittington "came up from behind the vice president and the other hunter and didn't signal them or indicate to them or announce himself." Then at a White House press briefing the next day, Scott McClellan referred to Armstrong's statement, saying "she pointed out that the protocol was not followed by Mr. Whittington, when it came to notifying the others that he was there." Finally, that same day, Matalin herself told Washington Post reporters about a conversation she had with Cheney the day before: "He felt badly, obviously. On the other hand, he was not careless or incautious or violate any of the [rules]. He didn't do anything he wasn't supposed to do."
Matalin lied her way through the rest of her repsonse as well: "In the first story it was clear from his spokesman and Katharine Armstrong that he took responsibility and he was apologetic. [untrue] He did not send anybody out to take the blame. [untrue] I’ve explained how these stories go from putting out facts to issuing denials. He wasn’t out—he wasn’t out—and he wasn’t not out for four days. If you go through those four days, the first day the story was out there in as complete a fashion as we could humanly do. [untrue]"
Since Tim Russert did not correct her lies at the time, will Meet The Press issue a correction of Ms. Matalin's lies on the program this Sunday? I'll be listening for one.