Lest anyone forget, today is the deadline for the House Republican caucus to sign off on continued efforts to cover up what happened to Valerie Plame.
On January 21st, Congressman Rush Holt (D-NJ) introduced
what's called a 'resolution of inquiry' (H-Res 499) requesting that the Justice Department, the State Department and the Department of Defense turn over to the Congress all relevant information or documents relating to how and why covert CIA operative Valerie Plame's name was leaked to the public.
Basically, this legislative tactic forced the House majority to go on record as to whether they were willing to allow any investigation of the Plame matter. It gave the Intelligence, Judiciary, Armed Services and International Relations Committees fourteen legislative days to decide whether to authorize the request for records from the three executive branch departments or refuse to do so.
Pretty quickly, the Intelligence Committee convened and voted 'no'. Presumably it was a party line vote but we actually don't know since the majority insisted that the vote and the debate over that vote be held in secret session.
Then this morning the Judiciary Committee met and voted it down on a straight party-line vote. And this afternoon or this evening Armed Services and International Relations are scheduled to vote too, and presumably they'll do the same.
The proffered excuse from the Republicans has been that they don't want to interfere with the on-going criminal investigation -- though that excuse is somewhat belied by the fact that countless congressional investigations have been carried out simultaneous with criminal probes.
Word is that the Republican members are under orders from their leadership and
the White House to vote 'no'. Earlier this month, Holt told The Hill
that Republican members of the relevant committees had told him that he is "doing the right thing." But, he said, they dare not say so publicly.