Karl Rove had only a few minutes before his Hannity and Colmes appearance last night to read the Politico story on Scott McClellan’s new book, What Happened, McClellan’s memoir of his time as Bush administration press secretary. Rove gives an effective rebuttal to McClellan’s allegation that he and Scooter Libby held “secret” meetings about the Plame affair, noting that he met regularly with Libby, and that they had both been advised not to talk about the issue:

Rove makes a pretty good point about these meetings. If they were so secret, how did McClellan discover the topics discussed? He apparently jumps to at least a few conclusions, if the excerpts prove correct. Rove also questions whether McClellan was even present for some of the meetings he describes in the book.

The Libby-Rove colloquy is especially devastating. If McClellan had never noticed Rove and Libby spending any time together before the Plame controversy, then how much access did McClellan really have? Rove’s explanation of all their joint efforts seems a lot more plausible than McClellan’s assertion that they had little noticeable contact with each other, which led him to the conclusion that they must have held secret strategizing sessions rather than the normal conduct of business.

Rove says that what he read in Politico doesn’t sound much like the man he knew for several years. Take a listen at the end to hear the comparison Rove makes, which won’t make our friends on the port side of the blogosphere very happy.