There was a rumor swirling around Washington last week that Abbe Lowell might be out as Rep. Gary Condit's attorney. I mention it now because nothing seems to have come of it. And presumably the rumor was unfounded.
But if it had been true it would have had some obvious implications quite apart from Mr. Lowell's professional prospects. Sometimes when a defense attorney bows out of a case it is because he or she has either come to know too much, has said too much, or has committed him or herself to too much to effectively defend the client.
No, don't worry. This isn't another Gary Condit post.
But the logic suggests a connection to Talking Points' other big obsession: Social Security.
I've wondered for a while why Mitch Daniels has been out front and center on the administration's efforts to justify dipping into the Social Security surplus funds. After all Larry Lindsey is the big privatization guru and he's the one who penned the tax cut bill. So why not Larry?
Could it be because he'd already committed himself too squarely and fulsomely to keeping those funds off-limits (the promise Daniels has now said the administration will break)?
Here's a clip from a Jules Witcover column of March 14th:
some Democrats argue that as the Bush administration spends more for defense, education and other programs, it may have to dip into Social Security surpluses to give Mr. Bush's cuts to income tax payers. Larry Lindsey, Mr. Bush's presidential assistant for economic policy, denies it, saying Social Security money will "never" have to be touched for this purpose.Ask not for whom the box locks, Larry. It locks for thee!