It was a holiday weekend, so you probably missed it (like we did), but Sunday's Oregonian included a letter to the editor from Senator Ron Wyden's chief of staff, Josh Kardon.
Kardon was responding to the editorial attack by right-wing Oregonian columnist David Reinhard - suggesting that Wyden criticized CIA nominee General Michael Hayden to get some media attention, rather than because of substantial concerns over Hayden's credibility. Previously covered here.
Here's the relevant excerpt from Kardon's smackdown:
While I was not involved in the classified, full intelligence committee briefing on the NSA domestic spying program, which took place one day before Hayden's confirmation hearing (nor could Wyden discuss that briefing with me), I believe the logical answer to the Reinhard question is that the senator learned in that briefing that USA Today got the story right.
If I'm correct, the evidence strongly suggests that Hayden knowingly engaged in an effort to mislead Congress and the public.
Knowing the senator as I do, if the classified intelligence briefing had repudiated the premise of the USA Today story, I cannot imagine he would have asked tough questions about the story in the public confirmation hearing.
Instead of attempting some independent analysis, my old friend Dave recycles the same, lame saw that critics have now used for decades to impugn the motives of scores of legislators: Wyden did it for the media attention.
Allow me to update that old saw: The most dangerous place for a life-threatening paper cut is to get between David Reinhard and the Republican National Committee's talking points.
And as long as we're talking about the Intelligence Committee, ponder this: If Wyden was in it for the media attention, why would he be on a committee whose hearings are in secret - and whose work he can't talk about?
Read the whole thing. Discuss.