Did Howard Dean order KS gov to lie about FEMA’s response to the Greensburg tornado? Update: Flat denials from the DNC, Gov Sebelius and Brownback

posted at 6:44 pm on May 10, 2007 by Bryan

Update: Brownback says no, making it 3 for 3.

Update: The DNC just emailed me two documents, one a letter to XM and the other a letter to Free Republic. In both letters, the DNC denies without equivocation that the conversation between Dean and Sebelius ever took place. Both are C&D notices from the DNC’s lawyers.

The statement made by Mr. Quinn is demonstrable, unequivocally, and absolutely false. Governor Dean had no such conversation with Governor Sebelius, ever.

That’s about as flat a denial as one can get, though it’s interesting that they would resort to C&D notices to combat this story and characterize it as “libelous” and “slanderous” and “interfering with the DNC’s operations and ability to solicit support and raise funds.” The Democrats as a party have been libeling and slandering President Bush with impunity for years. Perhaps the RNC should start slapping them with C&Ds.

But getting back to this story, both Gov. Sebelius and the DNC are flatly denying that the conversation between Dean and Sebelius took place as described. So consider this story killed.

***

Update: I’ve placed calls to Sen. Brownback, Gov. Sebelius and the DNC. I left a message with Brownback’s office and Gov. Sebelius’ staff. The DNC spokesman denied that the phone call took place and is working on getting an official denial out to me as soon as he can.

***

XM Radio’s Quinn & Rose made the allegation that DNC Chairman Howard Dean called Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius early Sunday morning and instructed her not to request federal assistance in recovery from the Greensburg tornado, and to lie about the federal response to date, on their show, The War Room, today. After I discussed the story via phone with both Quinn and Rose today, here’s what they sent me.

PLEASE NOTE: The following is information we have received from a reliable source. We have never been misinformed by this person in the past.

It seems that, on Sunday, a few hours after Kansas Governor, Kathleen Sebelius, made her remarks about Bush sending all their National Guard Members and Resources to Iraq, she made a call to Brownback

Sebelius, was calling to apologize to the Senator for making the Political statements that she did. She explained that she did not believe them and that they actually had too many National Guardsmen show up.

Governor Sebelius explained “Sam, you know how political everything is right now and we’re not allowed to let an opportunity like this just pass.” She continued “I made sure not to blame you or Pat (Senator Roberts?) or anybody outside the White House. With his (Bush’s) numbers, you can’t really blame me for usin’ that.”

Then Sebelius explained the path to her comments. After Brownback told her that he was very disappointed in her, She pleaded “You know me Sam, I wouldn’t have said it if I didn’t have to.” She declared “Howard (Dean) called me around 5 o’clock (in the morning) and told me not to ask The White House for any help or make any statements until I heard back. Dick (Durban?) called me an hour or 2 later and that’s when he told me we needed to use this ‘n’ said to talk about the Guard all bein’ at war.”

She then explained the thinking; “Speaker and Harry got so much heat on them from both sides over this damn war, ‘n’ they need to get the press on somethin’ else. I didn’t think it was right to use it like this either, but I didn’t see’s I had much choice in this climate, Sam.”

She the[n] apologized a few more times and promised that she’d try to move away from the comment when she and Brownback were to meet up later and tour the damage, but she had to so it without disappointing Dean and Pelosi.

I asked them to characterize their source, and they replied that she or he would be in a position to have knowledge of the conversation between Sen. Brownback and Gov. Sebelius and has never misinformed them before. Sean Hannity has called Sen. Brownback’s office to either verify or debunk the story, but so far the senator has done neither. There is word that the senator may attempt a “limited hangout” strategy this weekend, in which he acknowledges that the conversation took place but won’t remember the Dean angle. Such a strategy, if that’s what Sen. Brownback does, might be an attempt to maintain comity in what has until now been by all accounts a smooth relationship between the Democratic governor and Republican officials in Kansas. Comity shouldn’t come at the price of truth, however.

At this point, I have no way of verifying whether DNC Chairman Howard Dean called Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius and instructed her to lie about the federal response to Friday’s devastating tornado. But I will make some calls and see what I can find out. Quinn & Rose’s story does fit the timeline and does fit the Democrat M.O. of late, in which they find a way to blame every single thing under the sun on Bush and on the war in Iraq. Other Democrat governors have pre-emptively blamed the lack of response to disasters that haven’t even happened yet on Bush and the war in Iraq. So on its face the story strikes me as very plausible.

More: Here’s the original post to catch everyone up on Sebelius’ original statements, the WH and Pentagon and Brownback rebuttals, and then Sebelius’ quick climb down. Obama makes his “10,000 dead” gaffe (has anyone seen video of that gem yet?) and Dingy Harry assails the WH long after Sebelius’ original statements had been debunked. **Here’s the Obama gem. Heh. I’d been off the site and missed it when Ian posted it.


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Yeah Bryan Looks like WFAA channel 8 in Dallas apparently had a story ready to bash Bush. Then the Kansas Gov backed off. But Wfaa went ahead with their story. Seems like the Media failed again why didn’t they bring to light that half our National Guard resources are in Iraq before the Tornado and Hurricane season? If we have a huge disaster like Katrina in Texas we’ll “be on our knees praying for the national guard!” OOPS! Invoking ST again!

Drtuddle on May 11, 2007 at 2:13 AM

If the tables were turned you all know the allegations, unproven, would be made very public 100+ times a day for several days with the obligatory demands for a full investigation. Of course we don’t do that kind of thing and that’s why there will likely be a Democrat in the White House after 2008.

Buzzy on May 11, 2007 at 3:13 AM

cs and many here pointing to why I am here also…..
If it is true HA (Bryan) will not rest until it is blasted all over the MSM. If it is false HA (Bryan) will not rest until the liar is serving fries at MacDonalds. Try that at SadlyNo or Huffpo or DU.

Limerick on May 11, 2007 at 8:52 AM

sorry about the link thingy. I’m still a novice with all the bells and whistles.

JohnnyD on May 11, 2007 at 8:58 AM

“Quinn and Rose” have the story up on their homepage at The War Room.”
I posted it here.
Senator Brownback is the one who could end this all right now if he would talk.

gatewaypundit on May 11, 2007 at 9:16 AM

One of the reasons I called up Quinn & Rose was to hear the story from them myself, to hear about the source from them myself,

Bryan on May 10, 2007 at 11:07 PM

Bryan, I did not hear the original broadcast but am normally a listener to their program on 920 WHJJ-AM in Providence. Hannity had Quinn & Rose on his radio show yesterday, which I did hear. They have a very good talk show and hopefully more celestial stations will pick then up.

Wade on May 11, 2007 at 9:35 AM

Somewhere in DC or Vermont, a cry emits from a nondescript building: YEEEEEEEEEEAAAARRRGH!!!!!!!!

I think it’s good that this kind of thing gets posted even though it has just one confidential source, as long as it is marked that way. Good job with covering that base, Bryan. “A source who has never misled in the past” makes it more likely to be true. The comments from Sebelius about the Guard also somehow didn’t seem authentic enough or forceful enough, and I automatically suspected some monkey business. I actually don’t want it to be true because it would just confirm yet again just how low-life some people who run our country really are.

Maybe Howard “Scream” Dean will realize that our side is now onto his antics like stink on a barnyard and realize that this kind of stupid game won’t fly. That probably gives Dean too much credit, but it’s worth a shot. Obviously, if something comes out to contradict, we know we’ll read a genuine retraction or correction here… unlike CBS with another Guard story.

Let’s reverse the political parties in this situation. Dean’s an R, as is Sebelius. Brownback, Bush, etc. are D. Dean asks Sebelius to make the same statement and asks her not to send out the guard yet. This would be ALL OVER the press for MONTHS until heads are served on platters.

flutejpl on May 11, 2007 at 9:46 AM

I don’t know if this particular story about Dean and Sebelius is true.

However, Sebelius had a chance to really stand up and be counted as a good governor; instead she chose to paint herself as just another bloviating horse-posterior politician.

In times of crises we find out what people are really made of.

Lawrence on May 11, 2007 at 10:13 AM

I just called Brownback’s office and the person I spoke with said that the Senator and Governor haven’t had a phone conversation since before the tornado. And they tried contacting Quinn and Rose, who showed no interest in discussing the matter with them.

pistolero on May 11, 2007 at 10:49 AM

i don’t think that a conversation between Dean and Sebelius would be necessary for her comments to be in line with the established Liberal narrative; that’s it’s all Bush’s fault. Even when it’s a natural disaster, it’s Bush’s fault. All she has to do is consult the Huffpost or DKos for the latest copy points.

This time it didn’t work.

stevezilla on May 11, 2007 at 10:56 AM

Bryan: I just want it clear for the record that I’m not suggesting you or anyone did anything irresponsible. In fact, I think you did quite a good job with it. If I had rec’d such a thing, I’d have posted it too.

j.d. on May 11, 2007 at 12:19 PM

Bryan: I just want it clear for the record that I’m not suggesting you or anyone did anything irresponsible. In fact, I think you did quite a good job with it. If I had rec’d such a thing, I’d have posted it too.

j.d. on May 11, 2007 at 12:19 PM

Then why did you bring it up?

Wade on May 11, 2007 at 12:27 PM

from the freep thread:

Alrighty then! Lets start issuing subpoenas!

which is about right. if the parties were reversed, this is precisely the point at which the democratics would press forward with an indictment.

jummy on May 11, 2007 at 12:28 PM

Listen to The War Room with Quinn & Rose Show breaking the story! 05/10/2007

How often does the DNC send C&D orders to kill news stories?

TheBigOldDog on May 11, 2007 at 12:30 PM

A little good PI work could get the phone records…if they haven’t been destroyed yet.

Wag the dog

lsutiger on May 10, 2007 at 7:24 PM

Either that or pressure them to release the records. Turnabout on the National Guard thingy.

- The Cat

P.S. Time to fight as hard as they do. (past it really)

MirCat on May 11, 2007 at 12:45 PM

Here’s another case where Mr Sandler tried to intimidate media outlets:

Marc Elias, General Counsel for Kerry-Edwards 2000, and Joseph Sandler, General Counsel for the Democratic National Committee sent a hurried and semi-hysterical letter warning television stations not to run Swift Boat Vets ads setting out their definition of “the source” It is well worth reading as a reductio of Kerry campaign logic.

John Kerry’s Bodyguard of Lies
By Thomas Lipscomb
Published 8/12/2004 12:08:38 AM

TheBigOldDog on May 11, 2007 at 12:48 PM

Look, all I said was that I didn’t believe it, and I laid out my reasons why. Take it or leave it, if I don’t measure up to your ideological standards.

j.d. on May 11, 2007 at 12:53 PM

I’m not buying the denials, I’m sorry. I feel like this is one of those cases of bipartisan ass covering.

For starters, the quotes from the supposed conversation are pretty damn specific, to the point I feel like someone has a recording. And does anyone know anything about these Quinn & Rose people? Would they risk their reputations on this?

This seems very par for the course for the Democrats, and I have trouble not buying. It’s like the situation of Sandy Berger, this guy should have had the book thrown at him, especially under a GOP president, but he didn’t. I feel like Brownback is helping cover for Sebelius.

RightWinged on May 11, 2007 at 1:09 PM

How often does the DNC send C&D orders to kill news stories?

I wonder how often the RNC does? Do they at all?

Could this be the DNC displaying a little media savvy. Or the DNC doth protest too much, methinks.

BohicaTwentyTwo on May 11, 2007 at 1:15 PM

How often does the DNC send C&D orders to kill news stories?

Screw the DNC. Use some left wing tactics for a change. Make them prove Dean didn’t do it rather than anyone prove he did. Just tell them to release the phone records and it will clear everything up very quickly.

BacaDog on May 11, 2007 at 1:23 PM

What a bitter situation, the seed of which is a single source who had been reliable in the past.

Quinn, Rose, and Bryan stuck their necks out to get ahead of a potentially explosive story, and that took courage. j.d., thanks for your gentle braking.

I’m with RW – suspicious that somebody got to Brownback – and most like the source.

RushBaby on May 11, 2007 at 1:23 PM

most *likely* the source

o pimf

RushBaby on May 11, 2007 at 1:24 PM

BohicaTwentyTwo on May 11, 2007 at 1:15 PM

Look at the other time THIS lawyer was known to have done this. What do they have in common?

BacaDog on May 11, 2007 at 1:23 PM

Note there is no denial of calls. No denial of speaking. The denial is of content.

TheBigOldDog on May 11, 2007 at 1:25 PM

I feel like Brownback is helping cover for Sebelius.

RightWinged on May 11, 2007 at 1:09 PM

I truly like Sam — but my first instinct is to agree with you on this. Where would a motive be for a Republican to cover this up though?

wytammic on May 11, 2007 at 1:26 PM

Are the letters to XM and Free Republic real or a forged hoax? Did Hot Air receive copies directly from the DNC attorney? Is this confirmed? FReepers want to know.

Mandrake on May 11, 2007 at 1:28 PM

Where would a motive be for a Republican to cover this up though?

1) He’s running for president and can’t afford having the Governor of his State undermining him at home?

2) Who knows what she has on him?

3) He has some integrity and the call was confidential and he’s not about to betray they confidence?

TheBigOldDog on May 11, 2007 at 1:28 PM

Bring the source forward.

Wade on May 11, 2007 at 1:30 PM

This is interesting:

I just received an email from Jim Quinn of the Quinn & Rose show. He write of the DNC response, “FUNNY. THEY HAVEN’T CONTACTED US.”
299 posted on 05/11/2007 9:43:55 AM PDT by coffee260 (coffee)

Now why wouldn’t they try to stop Quinn & Rose? If you wanted to kill a “false and defamatory [and] libelous and slanderous” story, wouldn’t you go right after the original source?

TheBigOldDog on May 11, 2007 at 1:45 PM

I think vigorously pursuing this story with Governor Sebelius would be advisable at this point. The jackbooted DNC can’t stop people from investigating and asking questions.

JinxMcHue on May 11, 2007 at 1:45 PM

Bring the source forward.

Wade on May 11, 2007 at 1:30 PM

I did NOT just read this on a conservative blog. Wade, what is the difference between this source and the clerk who turned in the Dix film to the FBI?

RushBaby on May 11, 2007 at 2:54 PM

I question the timing :)

William Teach on May 11, 2007 at 3:42 PM

Noone seemed to have noticed something about the press conference with Tony Snow about this response.

Everything went fine. They had everything they needed.

The press was digging FRANTICALLY for something to slam FEMA and Bush.

They “found” that the complaint about response referred to FUTURE disasters, but just applied it to this one.

Now, something else… Has anyone noticed that they are trying to pick apart the Bush Admin one person at a time? Why not also start on the “new” FEMA?

Mazztek on May 11, 2007 at 3:59 PM

I did NOT just read this on a conservative blog. Wade, what is the difference between this source and the clerk who turned in the Dix film to the FBI?

Ha. Like this is going to get the same play in the media as all those supposed “John Does” leaking information on the Bush administration.

FWIW, I’ve been against those people and I’ll be against this person hiding (if in fact it was a true allegation). Civilian John Does? Not so much — they may actually be putting their lives on the line; not just political careers.

I’ll grant that there’s always the potential for abuse in the private sector; just as there obviously is in the public one.

eforhan on May 11, 2007 at 4:02 PM

I did NOT just read this on a conservative blog. Wade, what is the difference between this source and the clerk who turned in the Dix film to the FBI?

RushBaby on May 11, 2007 at 2:54 PM

I am not sure what this has to do with my post as I did not refer to anything you said. Anyway, I would like to see the source come forward so we can pursue this further.

Wade on May 11, 2007 at 4:42 PM

“Governor Dean” ??

He isn’t the governor of Vermont. Was, yes. Now? No. I’m sure “governor Dean” didn’t talk with the Governor of Kansas on getting her to lie misspoke because Dean wasn’t the governor at that time periold. But the C&D story produced a different tact by calling dean as the Governor giving it more credibility.

What say you, guys?

Kokonut on May 11, 2007 at 4:48 PM

Huffington gets all huffy about the Quinn and Rose thing.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/taylor-marsh/cease-desist-to-xm-over_b_48250.html

Kokonut on May 11, 2007 at 4:59 PM

Brownback says no, making it 3 for 3.

Ah, nuts!

It was much more fun when it a possibility.

TwinkietheKid on May 11, 2007 at 5:21 PM

They “found” that the complaint about response referred to FUTURE disasters, but just applied it to this one.

She complained about this one on CNN.

MayBee on May 11, 2007 at 5:49 PM

So what if the call didn’t take place? It is fake but accurate. LOL

Resolute on May 11, 2007 at 6:12 PM

I’d love to leave a comment over at the Hufftard Post, but, yet again, they have deleted my account. Figures.

William Teach on May 11, 2007 at 7:11 PM

I’d love to leave a comment over at the Hufftard Post, but, yet again, they have deleted my account. Figures.

William Teach on May 11, 2007 at 7:11 PM

I don’t know if they’d deleted my account because I stopped attempting to post because every time I did it would be removed in short order… and it was always just something simple like a sarcastic “Yeah, because the Dems didn’t spend 13 years making the WMD case” in response to some “Bush lied” crap. It would have any language for or name calling for them to take issue with (because I didn’t want to give them an excuse, like that stuff matters to them anyway), but no matter what, comments always removed… I guess I wasn’t hating America or wishing for Tony Snow or Dick Cheney’s death’s fast enough so they couldn’t tolerate my presence.

RightWinged on May 11, 2007 at 8:28 PM

How the Left Media aids and abets the Democrats:
Today, (days after Kansas Gov was caught fudging and politicking the tornado response) a Virginia local paper:
Front Page, huge letters, courtesy of Associate Press wire,
GOVERNORS WONDER IF STRETCHED GUARD WILL HOLD UP
Iraq Afghanistan missions strain tasks on US soil
Most deployed National Guard overseas : A headline designed to mislead the quick reader by implying that all Guard Units are overseas, when only a percentage of NG troops have been deployed overseas.
80,345 National Guard and Reserve Members called to active duty. Yeh, but accompanying pie chart shows percentage of Marine Corps, Army, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard. Gee, where are the National Guard troops in that mix? The Headline did say 80,345 National Guard AND Reserve. Perhaps National Guard is a very small % of the 80,345? So small, it would look stupid to note the actual number?
Associated Press: by a certain Mitch Stacey
“With repeated deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan leaving state National Guards wihtout nearly HALF of their required exquipment, some governors are questioning whether they will be able to handle the next hurricane, wildfire or terrorist attack at home.”
“We are not going to be able to continue to rely on the National Guard as a full-time operational force,” quote from North Carolina Gov Mike Easley.
Gov Easley would have trouble with a pandemic “or something like that.”
Still morbidly hoping for that avian flu, one supposes.

Associated Press – giving the free press a bad name.

naliaka on May 11, 2007 at 8:55 PM

Re: HuffPo
None of my attempts to post a comment there have ever even made it out of moderation. I’m pretty mild, but I almost always disagree.
That’s why I found their attempts to defend themselves about the Cheney posts hilarious.

MayBee on May 11, 2007 at 10:26 PM

Piffle. They wouldn’t have spent so much energy denying it if there weren’t some fire under that blown smoke.

They didn’t bother to deny all those Hillary = Satan rumors, did they? That’s clearly untrue. Soros is Satan.

Claire on May 11, 2007 at 11:14 PM

Re: HuffPo
None of my attempts to post a comment there have ever even made it out of moderation. I’m pretty mild, but I almost always disagree.
That’s why I found their attempts to defend themselves about the Cheney posts hilarious.

MayBee on May 11, 2007 at 10:26 PM

Precisely. The real issue there was that they were embarrassed because the public almost got a glimpse in to the world of liberals, and what modern active Democrats are all about. The hate and venom is the rule, not the exception there. HuffPo specifically blocked comments all together on certain posts where these comments would come up again after their brief and barely covered scandal. The public isn’t aware of that (well, they’re likely unaware of the Dick Cheney death wishes too unless they watch FNC, read blogs, or listen to talk radio). A lot of people don’t think it’s important, but it is… If these were a small fraction of commenters it would be one thing, but these are the people that site attracts and it’s a reflection of what they do there.

RightWinged on May 12, 2007 at 12:06 AM

Re HuffPo – Hmmmm. Maybe we should have an open thread for a day or so where trusted HA people can post a copy of their comments to HuffPo before they get eaten by the moderator.

It would be interesting to see what gets through and what doesn’t.

I haven’t posted over there since it was a brand new start up. A few comments got through, but an awful lot were deleted. It didn’t take long for me to not bother going back there and wasting my time.

Buy Danish on May 12, 2007 at 12:55 AM

When you are elected or appointed to office in the United States, you, essentially, get to retain use of the title of the highest office for life.

Howard Dean’s proper address is “Governor Howard Dean,” or “the Honorable Howard Dean,” even though he is not the current governor.

I know that some people insert the word “former” when referring to out of office persons (i.e., “Former President Clinton”) to avoid confusion.

Of course, I think Howie OUGHT to be called by a title he truly earned, as in: “Mr. Clenched-Fart Moron Howard Dean, Flaming Idiot.” But that’s just me.

georgej on May 12, 2007 at 3:21 AM

Then Sebelius explained the path to her comments. After Brownback told her that he was very disappointed in her, She pleaded “You know me Sam, I wouldn’t have said it if I didn’t have to.” She declared “Howard (Dean) called me around 5 o’clock (in the morning) and told me not to ask The White House for any help or make any statements until I heard back. Dick (Durban?) called me an hour or 2 later and that’s when he told me we needed to use this ‘n’ said to talk about the Guard all bein’ at war.”
She then explained the thinking; “Speaker and Harry got so much heat on them from both sides over this damn war, ‘n’ they need to get the press on somethin’ else. I didn’t think it was right to use it like this either, but I didn’t see’s I had much choice in this climate, Sam.” (Emphases added.)

Remarkable exceptions can be found, of course: Elizabeth, Catharine, Victoria, Golda Meir, Margaret Thatcher, and others perhaps not so exceptional as to have found a place in my memory. But the plausibility of the account quoted in this post is a reminder that the voters take good order and safety in their hands when they give a woman this much state.

It’s probably good for most legislatures to have some female members, and it’s probably very good that women hold a large portion of the offices directly concerned with the wellbeing of children, especially girls. But in times of fear, it seems women revert instinctively to taking orders from men they respect. And when is a nation or an American State exempt from times of fear? If a woman becomes Governor, let alone President, it’s altogether too plausible to imagine her taking orders by telephone from two men, following their orders, calling a third man to apologize, and using those other two men, their orders, and the times as her excuse. It’s altogether too plausible to imagine her suddenly retreating from political responsibility and sacrificing the welfare of the citizens, in order to maintain her own felt safety among the men she’s suddenly come to feel she needs.

Kralizec on May 12, 2007 at 8:58 AM

I have a feeling the original story is true. The C&D’s instantly reminded me of tactics used by the Klinton smear machine… grab some slimy liars lawyers and threaten to sue for every thin dime… anyway, just my thoughts.

Zorro on May 12, 2007 at 9:01 AM

So, they are still trying to sell the lie as the truth. This little statement was in a DNC email I got yesterday 5-11-07 from Tom McMahon.

“And just this week, his (Ref Bush) overextension of military resources failed the people of Greensburg, Kansas.”

Part of my reply to this his (the DNC) email:

“By the way Tom, you know damn well that this is an outright lie. “And just this week, his overextension of military resources failed the people of Greensburg, Kansas.”

Of course, you are a Democrat and it is hard for you to tell the difference.”

BobK on May 12, 2007 at 11:19 AM

I wasn’t sure what to believe, but I just heard the interview with the dynamic duo of Quinn and Rose that broke the story on Sean Hannity’s Best of radio program.

They sounded extremely credible. Add that to knowing what I know about how Democrats operate, I’m sure it happened as reported.

It’s also possible that it wasn’t Dean himself but one of his proxies (Leahy?) who had the original conversation with Sibelius which would give them plausible deniability when they say Governor Dean had no such conversation with Governor Sebelius, ever.

Buy Danish on May 13, 2007 at 4:02 PM

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