Byron York of the definitely pro-administration National Review spoke with Mark Corallo, the spokesman for Rove's defense who said,
Did Patrick Fitzgerald come to Patton Boggs for 15 hours Friday?
Did he come to Patton Boggs for any period of time Friday?
Did he meet anywhere else with Karl Rove's representatives?
Did he communicate in any way with Karl Rove's representatives?
Did he inform Rove or Rove's representatives that Rove had been indicted?
So, either Corallo's lying or Leopold's sources were. I think we'll know which soon.
The question I guess would be, who would benefit by lying on either side. If the story is true, how much benefit does Rove's side gain in delaying the announcement 24 hours until after the President's speech? Would they be going back on Monday attempting to reopen plea negotiations? An effort to try to release the story on their terms? (As far as I can think, there is no punishment for Rove's defense team if they are lying. What, they're going to lose credibility?)
And on the other side, why would the sources lie to Leopold? Maybe to set up a situation where the administration can go after irresponsible reporting as an effort to spin this thing as political or the Rove indictment as not a big deal to the base? If you were going to pull a media operation, wouldn't you go bigger than Leopold at truthout? I mean, if Rove wasn't indicted, why would you want a false story out there that he was?
Maybe it was some rogue group working against Rove or the White House? Leopold's sourcing for the Patton Boggs meeting is "high level sources with direct knowledge of the meeting," so it's possible. But again, if you were trying to run a media operation, why do it in such a relatively small place?
Looking at it briefly, it looks to me like the Rove defense team and administration has more to lie for, but as we don't know the all details that's just pure supposition.
I wish I had solid answers for you, but I don't. Just have to wait a couple of days I guess.UPDATE: TalkLeft spoke with Leopold
who stands by his story. Also, Larry Johnson repeated that Joe Wilson had received very similar information. I gave a short version of my interpretation in the comments for now. Short version, Corallo/Rove's side is lying, seeking out two extremely friendly journalists to get their side out. More later, I'm sure. (Thanks to Reality Based Educator
for the pointer, obviously the earlier bird. If you're tracking the arcania of all this, that blog is a pretty good one to watch
What these Corallo denials also mean though, is that if Leopold's story is true, it's going to take a lot of heavy sourcing for anyone else to go to print supporting his version. Effectively, this denial by Rove's team just seriously raised the bar on this story, making it more unlikely, I think, that we will get a second news source confirmation.