Rich Galen

"We were all clearly trying to get at the broader question of whether you knew about waterboarding at all," Bash said. "And the idea that we got from you was that you were never told that waterboarding was being used. But now we know that later, in February, you were told."

That last line has to do with the fact that Pelosi's aide on Intel was also briefed and said that he had told his boss about the waterboarding. She tried to maintain that telling an aide was not the same thing as telling her and so she couldn't have known what she didn't know.

I have been an aide to senior House officials. If I had told, say, Newt Gingrich, about something I had been briefed on and he (a) didn't believe me, or (b) discounted what I'd told him because he didn't think my telling him counted … I would have quit.

Gerry Seib - not known as a mouthpiece for GOP sources in Washington - wrote of Pelosi in his Wall Street Journal "Capital Journal" column:

By taking the lead on this issue, and identifying the CIA as her opponent, she is reinforcing the stereotype of her that Republicans want to keep alive. The image they want to present of Ms. Pelosi, of course, is that she is an unadulterated "San Francisco liberal."

And, finally, came Leon Panetta. Former Democratic Member of Congress. Former White House Chief of Staff under Bill Clinton. Now, CIA Director.

He wrote a memo to the CIA staff which pretty clearly states that either Pelosi was taking a little beauty nap during the briefing in question or she is being less than truthful:

Our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, describing the enhanced techniques [waterboarding] that had been employed.

Leon Panetta is not a holdover from the Bush Administration. He was appointed by Barack Obama. He is a Democrat. He is a Californian. He has called the Speaker of the House (also a Democrat from California) a liar.

Pelosi v the CIA. Who do you think is going to win this one?

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at