NEW YORK — Congressman Maurice Hinchey believes he knows the source of the forged docs CBS used to in a story about President Bush’s National Guard service: Karl Rove.
The theory that Bush master strategist Rove planted the docs to discredit CBS and Dan Rather has been bandied by Bush foes since the beginning of the scan-dal.
But Rep. Hinchey, a Democrat from upstate New York, gave fresh oxygen to the theory over the weekend during a meeting in his district when the question came up during a Q&A session.
Hinchey told the audience he believed Rove was behind the docs, and that he leaked them to the press so they could be discredited — effectively taking the is-sue off the table.
Local media reported on the subject of the meeting — Social Security reform — but a recording and a transcript showed up on a conservative blog, LittleGreen-Footballs.com.
Hinchey’s phone hasn’t stopped ringing since. “There are people who come to these town meetings with little recorders,” Hinchey told Daily Variety. “I never thought this part of it would get so much attention.”
On Tuesday, Hinchey appeared on CNN to posit his theory and call for an investigation. He said he planned to appear later on MSNBC and Fox News Chan-nel to defend his remarks.
For all the media hand-wringing over CBS’ journalistic missteps, the source of the forged documents is still a mystery.
“We need to get to the bottom of this,” Hinchey said. “If this is allowed to continue, it won’t be long before confidence in American media is undermined — and that will be extremely injurious to the democratic republic.”