Sestak story mutates from scandalous to depressing 

Sestak: (Inaudible)                         (reuters photo)

We've been all hot and bothered over Rep. Joe Sestak's claim he was offered a job by the White House to drop out of the primary race against Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter. But after last weekend, we were thinking "overkill," and now after tonight's interview with CNN's John King, we just feel bummed out and sad.

KING:  -- in these conversations.  You're one of the parties who knows.
 

SESTAK: Someone, as I said, was asked.  I answered the question --and I did -- forthrightly -- for my personal accountability in that matter.

KING: But what is the harm...

SESTAK: But if (INAUDIBLE)...

KING: What is the harm of you saying this is the person who called me and this is what they offered me so that we can go to that person and get the other end of the conversation?

SESTAK  I'll tell you what the harm actually appears to be.  You and I should be talking right now about how people were slammed in this economy, John.

Oh, right. If the Obama administration broke the law, that's not really the issue. Well you brought it up, Sestak. We're going to keep asking. And then White House senior adviser David Axelrod sat down with John King USA, and continued the White House line about how they can't tell us what happened, but trust -- it was all totally cool.

AXELROD: All I know is -- well, I -- I've been briefed, as Robert has -- that they looked into it.  And their conclusion was that it was perfect -- the conversations were perfectly appropriate.

KING: So then why can't we understand what those conversations were?

......

AXELROD: We're only talking in circles because I wasn't part of those conversations, so I can't relate to you what the conversations were.

KING: Can you make available the people who had the conversations?

AXELROD:  I'm sure that all of this will be -- you know, I don't think that any questions will be left unanswered on this.

Actually, so far there are a lot of questions left unanswered on this. To a lesser extent, to our practiced ears it sounds a lot like former Bush administration spokesman Scott McClellan's assurances that nothing at all was amiss with regard to Karl Rove and Scooter Libby's assertions about their involvement in the Valerie Plame matter.

Then, like now, the message from the podium was: We can't tell you what happened, exactly, but it was all cool. And anyone who suggests otherwise is just playing politics.

Politico reports that the Justice Department has brushed off Republican requests for a special counsel to investigate the Sestak allegations.

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Julie Mason

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